(Editor’s note: This letter was sent to both Pacific Palisades newspapers.)
After almost 35 years in the Palisades, I have decided that Bentons will not reopen and will not be a part of Caruso’s Palisades Village. This has been a very difficult decision, one that I have agonized over for more than two years. I love this town, and I loved being part of the Palisades retail community and owning one of the last family-owned sporting goods stores on the planet.
That said, “Every dog has his day” and mine has come and gone. This is a very emotional letter for me and it has been so hard to say “No” for two reasons:
One. Caruso and his staff have been so accommodating to me. For two years they gave me total respect and have been more than fair in all the lease negotiations. They really wanted me back, and I’m thankful for that but I’m more appreciative of the fact that in the long run they only wanted what was good for me and my family. I am a huge supporter of the Palisades Village, and I wish them well and will be shopping and eating there like most of the Palisades.
Two. And the most important. I will miss being in the sporting goods business and the everyday interaction with all the Palisades, especially the boys and girls who we helped with their sports and summer needs. For the past two years this community, on so many occasions I can’t count, has been so positive about Bentons coming back. Thank you, thank you. I am sorry.
I really hope that everyone understands that this very tough decision was mine alone.
I again want to thank all my customers, my past employees, and most of all I want to thank my manager, Dottie Henkle, who was my sidekick for more than 30 years in this wild ride. Thanks Dottie.
Thanks again Palisades, see you in town or at the Field of Dreams.
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