Pace Jewelers closing in Pickens

PICKENS — After 42 years of serving Pickens’ jewelry needs, Pace Jewelers’ Riley Garrick is ready to give retirement a try. Pace is closing its store on Main Street Friday, though the doors will remain open at its Greenville location.
Garrick and and his wife Judy work at the Pickens store. After Friday, Judy will transfer to the Greenville store full-time, while Riley will work two days a week there.
“I just got to the age where I want to retire,” Riley said.
Riley said that though business on Main Street has changed over the years, the Pickens store is still making money.
The difference is that downtown is no longer seen as a shopping venue.
“Used to, people would come downtown and shop at every store on the street,” Riley said. “Now the customers we have come downtown just to see us.”
Riley said that the types of businesses that are now located in Main Street buildings, such as lawyer’s offices and Behavioral Health Services of Pickens County were not the types of business that draw customers for their retail neighbors. But Riley and Judy both agree that those working at neighboring businesses have been very supportive of Pace Jewelry.
“They come and and talk with us, buy certain things,” Joy said.
Riley started at the Greenville store and after a couple of years, began splitting his time with the Pickens location, working there two to three days a week. Eventually he was working full-time in Pickens.
The Garricks have fond memories of the many customers they have served over the years. Often they were able to supply the class ring for two or three generations of Pickens High School graduates.
They have also provided wedding rings to multiple generations of Pickens families.
“We’ve provided rings for the mother, daughter and even the granddaughter often,” Riley said.
“One thing that makes it hard is leaving the friendships developed over the years,” Riley said.
The Garricks live “pretty much in the center of everything,” about nine miles toward Greenville, seven miles from Easley and five miles from Dacusville.
“I plan to stay busy,” Riley said, “doing some hunting and fishing, maybe repairing some clocks and such.”
Riley was very happy to have been able to have worked with Steve Pace, whose family started Pace Jewelers back in the 1940s.
“The Pace family is a good one to work for,” Riley said.