Something is wrong with this picture represented in the July 15 Gazette article on why Alley’s Store is closed for the summer. I’ve shopped at Alley’s Store since 1955, and it has been a summer staple for people like us living on the Island. This landmark needs to be open this summer, not next year.

Having (re)constructed over a $100 million worth of buildings, I still don’t understand the decision-making timing. Alley’s closing for the summer could have been easily avoided, although with some inconveniences, such as using tents for sales out back and on the porch out front for newspapers, assorted candies, non-refrigerated items, etc. Instead, I have to travel several more miles just to get a newspaper, a postcard, a kite, and a good pumpkin or Brazilian cup of coffee!

In early June, just before the store’s 50-70 per cent fire sale, I was told by the operators that after July 1, the old Alley’s Store would be back. Unfortunately, as Vineyard citizens, we were lied to. Now, traveling by Alley’s you see a vacant lot where it used to be a hub of business and social gathering strategically located in the middle of up-Island. My grandchildren ask me, “can we go to Alley’s Store”? I say not this year. Like them, can’t go because the owners closed it for the summer.

Simply put, we all don’t understand. I hope we get more than a half dozen explanations on why this was a May decision wiping out the store’s availability until next year when surely this project could have been put off until next fall. I will be kind and say this blunder did not have to happen. If nothing else, then temporary quarters for selling some of its staples could have been erected out back. Please give back to us what’s become our western Island staple store for visitors and Islanders alike.

Charlie Clark