One of the purposes of the new wider sidewalks on traditional mainstreets is to encourage merchants to display merchandise outside, which enlivens the environment with changing displays. Recently, Preston Hardware has started taking advantage of the very wide sidewalk in front of their store.
Part of the display is pretty ordinary hardware stuff: wheelbarrows, lawnmowers. The BBQ on a stone-faced cabinet is more different, and reflects the trend to “outdoor kitchens”, although a visit to any of the remaining Italian households in the neighborhood will reveal a kitchen in the garage for summer cooking and pickling. There is a house near mine where the Asian residents have a large outdoor grill (perhaps removed from a chip wagon) attached to the window frame and they cook outside by reaching through the window.
In the fall, I expect the hardware store to have wine barrels, crates of grapes, etc on the sidewalk, like Musca’s does now on Somerset Street.
What else would be interesting for a hardware store to put out on the sidewalk? Sledge hammers? shower stalls? waterless toilets? A door knob display? Let me know what you think would be neat on the sidewalk, and I’ll pass the suggestions on to Preston Hardware.