Former Wigwam and Western Summit Gift Shop to reopen as seasonal antique and gift shop


Photo Gallery | Wigwam and Western Summit Gift Shop

NORTH ADAMS -- The former Wigwam and Western Summit Gift Shop property has a new owner, and could have a new tenant in its former gift shop by this summer.

The 4-acre property atop the Western Summit of Route 2 was sold by the Main Street Hospitality Group to Roger Hurst, operating under the name Arrowhead LLC, for $275,000 on May 5, according to state land records. The land includes six rental cabins, a store building, and a single-family home.

Days after the purchase was finalized, Keith Bona, owner of Berkshire Emporium and Antiques on Main Street, submitted a proposal to city Planning Board to lease the gift shop and antique store at the site, titled Western Summit Merchant. The Planning Board approved the proposal unanimously at its meeting on Monday.

"It would be somewhat [similar] to what's been up there in the past," Bona said.

The pre-existing building operated, under two previous owners, as a gift shop for many years.

The approximately 800-square-foot store would be a seasonal business, Bona said, operating from about May to October. Bona will likely carry a largely similar supply of gifts and antiques as his store on Main Street, but with a heavier emphasis on souvenirs and with the purpose of being an "informational hub to direct visitors to downtown North Adams," Bona said.

The Planning Board approved operating hours of 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., but Bona said he is unsure of exact times at this point.

Hurst, as owner, apparently purchased the property mainly for use of the home, which he has rented in the past, acccording to Bona. Attempts to reach Hurst for this story were unsuccessful.

It is unclear, at this point, what plans Hurst may have for the cabins, if any.

Main Street Hospitality Group, which owns the Red Lion Inn, had purchased the property in 2009 with hopes of renovating it. But within four years, the company had decided to move on and sell for the same price -- $275,000 -- it had purchased it for originally, according to public land records. According to Bona's application to the planning board, "new codes and restrictions halted the project from moving forward."

Bona also mentioned that there are plans for a mobile food truck to be at the site seasonally, but that it was not directly related to his business at the store.

Also approved by the planning board on Monday:

n An application of Justin Henderson for a three-building storage unit business at 969 South Church St., which will replace former North Adams Public School bus garage.

n An application of North Adams Tower Co. to replace the two fallen communications towers at 2387 Mohawk Trail with one, 195 foot tower.

To reach Adam Shanks:
or (413) 663-3741, ext. 225.
On Twitter: @EagleAdamShanks


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