An old adage says that “the only thing constant is change.” A poignant example of this can be found at the newly renamed Poquoson Compounding and Gifts as we prepare for our grand reopening on March ­­­­24, 2018. Located in one of CNBC’s Top 10 Perfect Suburbs (Poquoson, Virginia), the former Poquoson Pharmacy, an icon in the community since 1962, sold our retail prescription operations to Rite-Aid necessitating the name change. The sale was covered in a Daily Press article on February 7, 2018 and only two weeks later, behemoth grocery chain Albertson’s announced that they were buying the bulk of Rite-Aid (with the remaining portion going to another behemoth, Walgreens). These transactions underscore a comment by owner, Dave Creecy that, in these industries, in these times, it’s now all about scale; headlined of course by the likes of Walmart and especially Amazon who themselves recently acquired Whole Foods. With that change, Poquoson Compounding and Gifts will now focus on those things that are unique like drug compounding and, in particular, specialty gifts.

Conventional wisdom among some had been that the pharmacy was what brought in customers who would then also purchase gifts. That may have been true in the beginning; however, over the years, the gift shop developed quite a reputation for offering many unique items such as Simply Southern® T-shirts, Musee bath balms, notes to self® socks, Melissa and Doug toys, and Candleberry candles. These sought-after brands are well known in boutique circles but only selectively distributed. One customer visiting from Kentucky even posted a review on our Facebook page on how excited they were to find Candleberry candles in Poquoson. It seems that many consider Candleberry’s candles to be far more fragrant than that of other notable brands. The brands mentioned are just a few of the many unique lines that retail veterans, Brooke Davis and Sharon Hendrickson, have acquired over the years during their annual trips to the International Gift & Home Furnishings Market held in Atlanta. As a result, the gift shop has established its own notoriety and is well-positioned to flourish on its own; especially now that the shop has acquired nearly a dozen more new and unique brands that can’t easily be found anywhere else within Hampton Roads.

Among the new lines is an intriguing jewelry collection known as Dune Jewelry out of Boston. Each silver piece incorporates sand (or stone or shells) from some memorable location that enables one to purchase a keepsake commemorating a special event and the place it happened such as a first date or a first kiss.

Another popular line is Nora Fleming out of Illinois; a collection of serving ware that can be customized for different occasions using miniatures (minis) that interchange with platters, trays, or serving boards. They also have a line of pillows with interchangeable panels for different settings.

Shinelife is an emotive line of jewelry out of North Carolina. Inspired by the trials and tribulations experienced by one mother, the jewelry designs provide memorial keepsakes with inspirational messages of hope and love for their owners.

Other new lines include Farmhouse Fresh Goods, Spartina 449, Scout Bags, and Tidewater Sandals. All of these unique brands are sold only by select outlets that have been vetted and approved by the manufacturers, which is quite an endorsement for Poquoson Compounding and Gifts.

In addition to compounding and selling unique, hard-to-find gifts, the store also plans to hold special new events such as the upcoming Paint Night on March 15, 2018 to be guided by local artist Amy Ziglar. In addition to Brooke and Sharon, the gift shop is operated by Danielle Earhart, who also handles marketing, as well as Cyndi Yakshe and Joannie Headrick. When you talk with them about this new venture, you will sense the excitement in their voices. Another old adage says that “change represents opportunity; for where there was one path now there are many.”