Downtown Getting Two New Merchants: 5th and Hall, Take Heart

Downtown Lakeland is getting two more retail businesses: 5th and Hall, a boutique moving from Dixieland, and Take Heart, a non-profit dealer of African fair-trade goods that’s been a fixture at the downtown market. 

The announcement of the new merchants came in a monthly update prepared for Lakeland Downtown Development Authority board members by Executive Director Julie Townsend.

5th and Hall is moving from its current space at 1117 S. Florida Ave. to 117 S. Kentucky Ave., which was vacated by Two Hens and a Hound in December. The boutique, which opened its Dixieland shop in June 2016, sells clothing for men and women that it describes as “the intersection of classic American style and current streetwear.”

Kristy Scott, who co-owns 5th and Hall with husband Abdiel Gonzalez, said they hope to complete the move early next month.

The couple believes the South Kentucky Avenue location will bring more foot traffic, Scott says, noting that their best sales come on Saturdays when pedestrians line the sidewalk near their current store to buy baked goods from nearby Born & Bread Bakehouse.

Hours have not been finalized, but they will probably expand both earlier and later than their current 11-to-6 schedule, Scott said, to benefit from both of downtown’s main audiences: daytime workers and evening restaurant and lounge patrons.

Its location is next to the planned upscale Revival cocktail lounge, which will double as a coffee-and-snack spot during mornings and early afternoons, and it’s two doors down from Urban Appeal hip-hop-oriented clothing store.

The basic 5th and Hall preppy-meets-streetwise aesthetic will remain but the product offerings will shift slightly to reflect an expanded downtown clientele, Scott said.

5th and Hall plans to sublease a portion of the 2,800-square-foot building to one or two businesses that appeal to the same customer base, she said, adding they should be able to announce those businesses soon.

UPDATE: One of the businesses is a two-chair barbershop and three-chair blow-dry bar run by Jason Oliveras in a rebranding of his North Lakeland barbershop, YLakeland reported.

Several blocks to the north, a shift in businesses addresses opened up the space at 248 N. Kentucky Ave. that will house Take Heart, the retail arm of a non-profit organization that benefits widows and orphans in a village near Nairobi, Kenya.

Take Heart, which offers fair-trade goods made by artisans from Africa, has had a presence at the Downtown Farmer’s Curb Market for about three years, Townsend said.

Their new space in the Keslinger Building was occupied until recently by Magnolia Popcorn, which is preparing a new space across the street and down the block that they hope to open next week.

The move will enable Magnolia to expand its offerings to classic candies, sodas and homemade fudge, YLakeland reports.

The new Magnolia Popcorn location, 225 N. Kentucky Ave., until recently housed Amelia Paige Boutique and Embroidery, which moved next door to the storefront at the corner of Kentucky and Pine Street that was occupied for 30 years by Brooke Pottery.

Amelia Paige Boutique’s new location, 223 N. Kentucky Ave.

Townsend’s report to the LDDA board also included:

  • The food truck rallies held along Munn Park the second Thursday each month are now being coordinated by the city Parks and Recreation department. LDDA took over First Friday and some other events once organized by the disbanding Downtown Lakeland Partnership, but officials there concluded the DLP’s contract for the food truck event carried too much financial risk.
  • Lori Long, the former DLP executive director who worked briefly for the LDDA after the DLP ceased operations, has left to work with Lakeland Business Leaders.