Crowder Bros. Ace Hardware plans to open its third Manatee County store this fall at Mount Vernon Plaza, 9516 Cortez Road.
The news is creating a buzz among other businesses and customers at the shopping center.
"We are super excited about it," said Lindy Hidri of Judy's Restaurant. "We have been here about six years and have a great following and great customers. We hope to help them create a great following as well."
Wait staff member Karin Wise chimed in: "Our customers ask us every day when is it going in?"
The proposed store would be Ron and Jina Crowder’s third in Manatee County. The others are at 5409 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton, and at 2401 Lakewood Ranch Blvd., Lakewood Ranch. The Crowders also have two hardware stores in Lakeland.
Crowder cites population growth in the area for the planned Cortez Road store.
"The Cortez area continues to grow, especially with the new development happening in the next few years near 75th Street and Cortez Road. We also like that the store will be able to service customers on the south end of Anna Maria Island," the company said in a statement to the Bradenton Herald.
The 1,322-acre Lake Flores community proposed nearby would bring 6,500 residential units and 1 million square feet of commercial space to the area.
"We're excited to expand our Crowder Bros. Ace Hardware stores to provide quality products and top-notch service to the Cortez area," Ron Crowder said. "Expanding into the Cortez area has always been something I've wanted to do and we're excited to have the opportunity present itself to open a new store."
Crowder’s Ace Hardware was founded in 1955 by John and Chester Crowder.
The Cortez Road store will be smaller than the stores in Bradenton and Lakewood Ranch at about 10,000 square feet. It will focus on hardware and will not have a gift department.
Among popular items the store expects to carry are Costa Del Mar sunglasses, Maui Jim Sunglasses, Valspar Paint, Weber Grills, Big Green Eggs, Yeti coolers, and marine and boating supplies.
The Cortez Road store is awaiting permits to start construction. It is expected to have a staff of approximately 15-20.
The company is known for its helpful, knowledgeable staff and Ron Crowder said that will not change at the new store.