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An unlikely strip mall off Two Notch Road houses an eclectic antique mall that’s getting ready to expand its presence across the Midlands.Retro signage, stately statues and a buzzing parking l...
An unlikely strip mall off Two Notch Road houses an eclectic antique mall that’s getting ready to expand its presence across the Midlands.
Retro signage, stately statues and a buzzing parking lot characterize the building that Ivy House has called home for more than a decade in the Pontiac region of Elgin, northeast of Columbia.
Now, the mall of 70 vendors that sell antique, vintage and repurposed goods along with handmade and local art, jewelry and clothing, is crossing Columbia and expanding into Lexington.
After a seven-year search, Ivy House will open a second location this spring in the former Sherwood’s Furniture Barn warehouse. The new location at 4211 Augusta Road, will include 15,000 square feet of space that current and new vendors will fill.
“The concept behind Ivy House is to provide a platform so that our vendors can be prosperous so that the store can make money so that we can support ourselves and local charities,” co-owner Ruth Rauch said.
Rauch and her husband, Pete, are Christian ministers who want to use their business to serve God and the public, Rauch said. They donate proceeds to local charities including Oliver Gospel, Reconciliation Ministries, PETSinc and Fostering Foster. But Ivy House in itself isn’t religiously affiliated.
“At the end of the day, it’s all about taking care of people,” Rauch said. “That’s the background of what motivates us daily.”
Ruth Rauch was a vendor at Ivy House before the couple, who also owns Reliable Signage and Lighting, bought it from its original owner in 2015. When they bought the business, about 30 vendors sold antique or homemade items there. They’ve more than doubled that number and also have a long waiting list for potential vendors, she said.
“It’s gotten to where we have so many people trying to be a vendor with us, that we feel like it’s necessary to expand,” Rauch said.
The new Lexington location is fitting for Ivy House because it was already divided up into small showrooms, Rauch said. It will nearly triple the available space for vendors.
Vendors Rob and Angie Kinkaid quit their corporate jobs and have been making a living from selling at Ivy House since 2019. They began by making custom, farmhouse-style furniture for fun before transitioning into being full-time small business owners.
Even though they live about an hour away from the current Ivy House location — the new location will be slightly closer for the couple — their increasing sales have proved that it’s worth the drive.
“There’s something here for everyone, no matter what your taste is,” Angie Kinkaid said. “That’s what I love about it.”
Mary Rodriguez, another vendor and front desk worker, said the same. Every generation and style is represented in the hodge-podge of antique and vintage items alongside homemade art.
She said she’s known for her “fun, silly” paintings of cows, pigs and chickens, but she also started flipping and repainting furniture, too.
What separates Ivy House from other vendor markets is its staging and presentation, Rodriguez said.
“You’ll see a lot of antique stores where it’s just dusty shelves, but (here) they try to find pretty things and show you how you can set them up in your house,” Rodriguez said. “It’s the attention to detail from each and every one of the vendors.”
Not only is the staging carefully crafted, but the items also frequently change. The Kinkaids restock their store weekly.
Ivy House’s clean, ever-changing displays are what attract customer Deanna Hoyt-Zoeller to keep coming back several times a month since it opened. She said she walks out with a new purchase almost every time she visits.
“Vendors turn things over a lot because people shop here so frequently,” Hoyt-Zoeller said. “You’re always kind of surprised when you come here.”
That’s the goal, Ruth Rauch said. She wants Ivy House to be a place for customers to unwind and save money shopping.
“We want it to be a place where they can relax and let their minds escape the burdens and pressures of their day,” Rauch said. “Many customers come in and say, ‘Oh my goodness, my momma used to have that,’ and their minds go back to treasured memories.”
The new site is undergoing renovations now, and the Rauches are aiming to open it as soon as March.
This story was originally published January 31, 2023, 5:30 AM.
In the fall of 2021, things turned tragic for Random Tap in Elgin.Catherine Cosby, the restaurant and bottle shop’s chef, died in an October car accident on the way to work. She had taken over the kitchen and revolutionized the bar’s food program, drawing in new crowds and becoming a beloved member of the business’s workforce.From a practical standpoint, Cosby had been an answer to the bar’s issue with finding steady and reliable help in the kitchen.“It was devastating, not only for us but f...
In the fall of 2021, things turned tragic for Random Tap in Elgin.
Catherine Cosby, the restaurant and bottle shop’s chef, died in an October car accident on the way to work. She had taken over the kitchen and revolutionized the bar’s food program, drawing in new crowds and becoming a beloved member of the business’s workforce.
From a practical standpoint, Cosby had been an answer to the bar’s issue with finding steady and reliable help in the kitchen.
“It was devastating, not only for us but for the whole Random Tap family,” co-owner Kimberly Gagliardi said. “After that, the kitchen was never really the same and we knew that we had to make a change.”
The owners struggled to find someone to replace Cosby, hiring one chef for a brief stint before realizing it wasn’t the right fit.
That’s where Chatara and Donald Taylor come in.
The couple both had restaurant experience — owning and operating their own spot, Captain Taylor’s BBQ and Seafood from 2017 to 2019, and running a local food truck, Hooked on Sammiches, over the last year. Donald, an Army veteran, also had professional kitchen training, studying at Johnson & Wales.
“This is what he really really always wanted to do because he can do more with his culinary skills than he could,” Chatara said. “You know, with the food truck, you’re confined and restricted. You can’t do but so much on a food truck.”
At the beginning of September, the couple opened their own restaurant, BirdsNest Grille, inside of the taproom just down the road from Ratio, a Peruvian tapas restaurant that’s popular in the area. The Gagliardis said they chose the Taylors after putting an advertisement for a new business to fill the gap and interviewed other candidates before deciding on Chatara and Donald.
The two fill the void left by Cosby’s death.
Cosby had joined the restaurant in spring 2020. At the time, Gagliardi, and her husband and business partner John, said they told Cosby that they didn’t have enough money to pay her what she deserved, but Cosby helped them reorganize their kitchen.
She was officially put on the payroll in May of that year after declining two other higher-paying jobs at other spots, Gagliardi said.
Cosby had worked in a handful of other kitchens — from Cafe Brio in Charleston, learning how to cook upscale Southern fare, to Twisted Spur Brewing in Columbia, which she helped open in 2016.
She completely turned the kitchen around — from offering elevated bar food to offering a menu that the Gagliardi’s referred to as “casually sophisticated” with items like a mozzarella salad, made with cherry tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and a dark balsamic glaze, to her poke salad.
And, now, Random Tap seems to have found a duo who can offer a semblance of Cosby’s work.
Their menu puts an emphasis on English food like shepherd’s pie — a dish traditionally prepared with minced meat and topped with mashed potatoes — and bangers-n-mash. Menu items range in price from around $10 to $15.
Donald grew up in Birdnest, Va. — a small community about 50 miles outside of Norfolk. He said he named the restaurant after his home, where he grew up cooking with his grandparents and learned a love for cooking in his home economics class.
“The guys were more taking (home economics) because the girls were taking it,” Donald joked. “But I had a talent and my teacher, Ms. Hardesty, noticed it and I owe a lot of gratitude to her.”
His teacher began entering him into competitions and taking him on field trips. And after a stint in the military, he fell back on his original love for cooking and attended culinary school.
After spending a few years out of a traditional kitchen, the couple are excited to bring something different to the taproom.
The new restaurant, which is located inside of Random Tap at 117 Spears Creek Church Rd in Elgin, is open Tuesday through Thursday until 9 p.m., weekends until 10 p.m. and Sunday afternoons until 7 p.m.
It's the first earthquake in roughly two weeks in the region.KERSHAW COUNTY, S.C. — While more sporadic, earthquakes continue in Kershaw County as the area quickly approaches the one-year anniversary of when the swarm started.The latest earthquake, with a magnitude of 1.7 according to the U.S. Geological Survey, is the 83rd since rumbles started becoming...
It's the first earthquake in roughly two weeks in the region.
KERSHAW COUNTY, S.C. — While more sporadic, earthquakes continue in Kershaw County as the area quickly approaches the one-year anniversary of when the swarm started.
The latest earthquake, with a magnitude of 1.7 according to the U.S. Geological Survey, is the 83rd since rumbles started becoming somewhat commonplace in the Lugoff and Elgin regions in late December 2021.
According to data from the agency, the quake happened around 7:48 p.m. on Friday and was allegedly felt by at least three people who reported the rattle on its earthquake monitoring website. Earthquakes below a magnitude of 2.5 are typically not felt by the public.
The last earthquake to rumble the region was on Nov. 24 and had a magnitude of 2.0. The earthquakes still vary in size but have become less frequent than they were at different points in 2022 when they were an almost daily occurrence.
More seismic equipment has been installed in the area in recent months but an exact reason for the centralized earthquake activity hasn't yet been determined.
While having the earthquakes focused in Kershaw County as a swarm hasn't been the norm historically, earthquakes are not a new occurrence in South Carolina, which has them occasionally across the state. South Carolina was also the location of the largest earthquake in the history of the southeastern U.S. which happened in the Charleston area in 1886 and was estimated to have a magnitude above 7.0.
Historical records suggest the earthquake, located in what is now known as the Middleton Place-Summerville Seismic Zone, was felt as far away as Chicago, Boston, and even Cuba.
However, the quakes shaking Elgin are in a different location in the state along the Eastern Piedmont Fault System which runs from Alabama to Virginia.
A new restaurant opened and 57 homes were approved to be constructed in just one week.ELGIN, S.C. — New places to live and eat are appearing in Elgin and business owners and town officials alike are seeing the signs of growth."We've been doing over 300 tickets a day," said the general manager of Gyromania Grill, Joseph Cornelius.He said bringing the restaurant to the town was important as they needed more dining options, but what he ...
A new restaurant opened and 57 homes were approved to be constructed in just one week.
ELGIN, S.C. — New places to live and eat are appearing in Elgin and business owners and town officials alike are seeing the signs of growth.
"We've been doing over 300 tickets a day," said the general manager of Gyromania Grill, Joseph Cornelius.
He said bringing the restaurant to the town was important as they needed more dining options, but what he didn't expect was how well business would be.
"We've actually sold a lot of desserts. We try not to run out - we've been prepping," Cornelius added. "I've got my family back there prepping still. We knew we were gonna do good but we didn't know we would be as popular."
Gyromania Grill is not the only restaurant that welcomed a big week as the owner of Tony's Pizza Palace had a rezoning request approved that will allow his business to move down the street while also adding a strip mall.
"We're approved for a re-zoning for commercial. We are planning to relocate Tony's to the south end of that lot and put a strip mall on the opposite end," owner Collin McDonald said. "We would like to bring three to four businesses in the strip mall."
"I'd like to see a diner café, and then an ice cream shop," he added.
Along with new dining options come new homes.
"The growth Elgin has seen has been explosive, just this week alone 57 homes were approved in the Elgin area," said Kershaw County Councilman for District 3, Derek Shoemake.
He said that outside of the homes approved this week, there are currently half a dozen active housing developments. And while he said that's great, Shoemake said he wants to make sure there is responsible growth countywide.
"I think what you're going to see from this council is the next big priority is going to be address zoning because of the growth," Shoemake said.
Kershaw County Council meets again at a rescheduled meeting on April 18.
If you bought a Mega Millions ticket prior to last Friday’s drawing, check your numbers because somebody won a five-digit jackpot, South Carolina Education Lottery officials said.A $10,000 prize-winning ticket was sold in Elgin, lottery officials said in a news release.The winning Mega Millions game was bought at ...
If you bought a Mega Millions ticket prior to last Friday’s drawing, check your numbers because somebody won a five-digit jackpot, South Carolina Education Lottery officials said.
A $10,000 prize-winning ticket was sold in Elgin, lottery officials said in a news release.
The winning Mega Millions game was bought at White Pond Food N Beverage, according to the release. The gas station/convenience store is at 899 White Pond Road, near Exit 87 on Interstate 20.
The ticket sold in Kershaw County matched four of five white ball numbers drawn, and the gold Megaball number, officials said.
The winning numbers from last Friday’s drawing were 12, 20, 37, 41, 64 and Megaball: 1.
The winner has 180 days to claim the prize, according to lottery officials.
The winner will be allowed to retain some privacy, as South Carolina is one of 11 states — along with Arizona, Delaware, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio, Texas and Virginia — that allow lottery winners to remain anonymous.
The odds of matching four white balls and the gold ball for the $10,000 prize are 1-in-931,001, according to the release.
“Sign the back of your ticket and put it in a safe location until you’re ready to come forward to claim the prize,” lottery officials said.
For complete information on claiming prizes, go to sceducationlottery.com.
White Pond Food N Beverage will receive a commission of $100 when the winning ticket is claimed and turned in to lottery officials, according to the release.
In addition to the $10,000 winning game, more than 7,000 other players in South Carolina won prizes in the May 26 drawing, according to the release.
Because nobody won the grand prize on Tuesday night, the Mega Millions jackpot is estimated to be $203 million when the next drawing is held Friday night.