Monday, March 29, 2010

A Partnership in Action...Yates Market & Deli

...Focus on Dwayne Hitchcock

My last feature on "Yates Market & Deli" included this promise: "According to The View newspaper and hearing it from Betty as well, the Market will be newly connected through combined services to Dwayne Hitchcock's upholstery store next door, offering caning, for example, another historical connection. They will run the new store as a joint venture. A future blog will delve into the partnership in more depth."

Here, then, with daffodils and tulips in full bloom in Ellicott City Historic District, I decided to keep my promise and visit the transformed Yates store again. Change that respects the historic character of a place is very carefully planned.

I have watched for some time now as Dwayne Hitchcock and Betty Jacobs have added to the exterior through new storefront display items behind glass, as well as what you can buy from the street, such as hats and fruit, fabric and oranges. It is a wonderful "combo platter!"

Then, Dwayne and Betty essentially created a "new" interior, that is, new, but inextricably connected to the past. Some food items have been deleted; others are featured (such as the coffee with the 1900s grinder; and old, restored, furniture has been added. A high-up shelf features lamps and lampshades.) I told Betty last week: "You know, this is just adorable. I want to feature your shop again and interview your business partner, Dwayne!" Photo: Furniture and Chips.

Dwayne's Background & Spirit: Hitchcock told me in a standing, then sitting interview, while customers called asking about his upholstery side of the business and others wanted a sandwich or coffee, that he makes "case goods." I asked him what that meant, because I had never heard the term. He told me that it includes furniture, such as bookcases, tables, and armoires, and added that he has been an upholsterer for 10 years. Photo: Dwayne on the phone

Before he opened his most recent shop next to Yates Market, he had worked for Leslie Lewart's Rugs to Riches "selling design," in his words. I asked him to clarify. He told me he helped people with interior design. Finally, he said he had done "finishes" for Shoemakers, down the hill on Main Street. I asked Dwayne how "the combo platter" (Betty's and Dwayne's vision for an updated market) was working out." His immediate response was an enthusastic "Extremely well!"

While I was waiting to interview Dwayne and photographing the interior, I struck up a conversation with a gentleman sitting at the round wooden table. A long-term resident of the Historic District, John Beck offered up some of his own history, namely that he had lived in the top upstairs apartment above Yates Market for 8 years. He is now retired and resides down the hill a bit, above another local business. John said, "The advantage to Yates Market & Deli is that it is open on Sunday, " adding, "Change is great! The food and sandwiches are always good," then said, "But this is not a typical sit-down place."

As my visit ended, I asked Dwayne for one more thought to give prospective visitors to Ellicott City Historic District to consider when walking up or down Main Street. He said, "Sure! Come in and see how the store has changed and grown!"

To contact Dwayne about Upholstery, Fabrication, Furniture, or Painting and Finishes,
call 410-480-4909 or e-mail:

Blog content and photos: Kay Weeks . Be sure to check out Jeremy Kipp Clark's comprehensive web site on Ellicott City and beyond at

View from just outside Yates Market & Deli on March 28, 2010. You can see Church Road across the street (steep hill) and the restored historic Fire Station to the right. A generous public parking lot is nearby.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My first comment didnt post? These walks into Ellicott City are wonderful. If I am ever able to make the trip from Kansas it will be more of a reunion with old friends than a first visit. Keep it coming....Harve