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Two long-standing, family-run Tsawwassen businesses on 12th Ave.–Jack's TV & Stereo and Harris Nursery & Florist—are closing.
Almost half a century ago, in 1965, Jack Learmont opened a full service TV and electronics store in Tsawwassen. His son Bill, who took over the business 10 years later, watched TVs evolve from transistor and tube to LED and LCD.
Bill rode the new wave of TV technology—and the business continued to hold its own even when the big box electronics stores arrived.
Jack's TV, which took in $3.5 million in revenue in 2008, had the distinction of being one of the top 10 independent TV retailers in Canada, said Bill.
But sales have slowly dwindled in the last four years to just over $1 million annually. Bill blames the recession and better quality TVs.
"We shut down our service department about five years ago. [Electronics] didn't break as often," he said.
But Jack's TV would continue to include home delivery and setup for its clients, not wanting to break from a tradition of offering personable customer service. Bill figures it's the last standing independent electronics store in the South Delta area.
He will continue to assist his customers, some of whom are third generation, with any service issues or questions about electronics purchased at the store.
They can reach him through the Jack's TV website (jackstv.ca), which Bill said he will continue to monitor.
"I want to thank [my customers] for their support all over the years," added Bill.
Meanwhile, on Sunday (July 22) Harris Nursery & Florist will shutter its Tsawwassen location only.
Vernette and Gerry Harris started out with a lowly bedding plant stand in front of their house in the 1960s, eventually growing the enterprise into two successful South Delta nurseries.
The couple is now retiring, which is the reason behind the closure of the 12th Ave. store, leaving the remaining Ladner location to be overseen by the couple's son, Scott Harris.
"It's just fun, very gratifying," said Scott. "People are happy to be there—it's a pleasure time business. We've been lucky with loyal customers at this [Tsawwassen] location."