Danielle, Evan and I decided to do some shopping and the Laurel Mall flea market didn't disappoint. D found some sweet new exploration footwear as well as some Spuds McKenzie glasses. Evan scored a Stoney's tray and just wait 'till you see the gnarly purple carpet I'm getting for the Shaggin' Wagon!
Anyway, while we were checking out the Star Wars toys and digging on the vintage vibe of Laurel Mall, we decided to pay homage to a local shopping mecca. A place everyone has memories of, both good and,well.... Eating in the cafeteria was a rite of passage. Feed your family for about $5...really. This was a place where you could buy groceries, shoes, golf clubs, a gun and beer all in one place...way before Wal-Mart!
I'm of course speaking of the legendary Pechin's Shopping Village. Located in Dunbar, Pa. near the Fayette County Fairgrounds, Pechin's was not just a store, it was an adventure! Founded in 1947 as Pechin Grocery by Sullivan "Sully" D'Amico in a former train depot, the place was a staple for Moms and Grandmas in the tri-state area. Pechins was famous for low prices and infamous for being janky as hell! But thats what made it great! There seemed to be no rhyme or reason to the location of goods in the grocery store. I think they just dropped a pallet where there was room. Maybe it was a brilliant way to make shoppers roll the entire wooden floor in search of what they needed, picking up items as they went? Nah, probably not. Evan recalls "old timers" telling how you could see the creek through the holes in the floor. The buggies look as if they were patched together from different stores and you NEVER, I MEAN NEVER, went to Pechins on the first of the month!
Every year, we would head to 7-Springs and stop at Pechins for beer. The challenge was to eat $5 worth of food in the cafeteria. Keep in mind...hamburgers were 20 cents, cheeseburgers 25 cents. I never even came close...The food was actually pretty good. If I remember... those prices lived on until the end of the original plaza.
Following the death of Mr. D'Amico in 2005, Pechins moved to the afore mentioned Laurel Mall. Occupying the former Montgomery Wards. The store lives on, but with much less character. A salvage company moved into the original site not long after and began the process of clearing out the shelves, cases and fixtures. Then, on June 6th, 2006, a fire swept through the former shopping plaza destroying most of the buildings and nearby trucks and equipment. We grabbed some pix of whats left, which isn't much. Share your Pechins story...cuz we know you got one!!
|Found this inside the resturaunt shot online...|