Tribune-Courier News Editor
BENTON — A downtown jeweler plans to move to a larger home in the former CFSB headquarters.
Dave Puckett, owner of Puckett’s Jewelry, said he plans to renovate the building and open for operations by early November. Puckett is buying the building from First Baptist Church. The church bought the building from CFSB.
Jason Jones, of CFSB, said the former bank was built in the early 1960’s as the headquarters of the Bank of Benton. He declined to give a sales price for the building. The building includes a bank vault.
Doug Galyen, chairman of deacons at First Baptist, said he was not prepared to comment on the transaction until a deacons’ meeting on Aug. 12.
Puckett said he planned to use former bank space to increase the scope of his business. He plans to offer more jewelery and other items.
“We’re going to have a gift shop and offer some different items,” Puckett said. “One thing we plan to offer are Vera Bradley purses that are very popular with ladies today.”
Puckett said his shop will also expand to include a bridal department, with gifts, pottery and flatware, with a bridal registry.
A second business will also be a tenant in the building. Puckett said the Kennedy Bookstore, a University of Kentucky vendor is spreading through the Commonwealth as a sports memorabilia purveyor.
“Kennedy will come in as a UK fan shop, and sell things related to Marshall County schools,” Puckett said.
Once the jewelry store is open in the former bank, Puckett hopes to add a salon and spa on the lower level of the building.
“We’re planning to expand our staff as needed,” Puckett said. “Right now, we have six people on our staff, and are planning to include a couple more.”
Puckett also plans to expand business hours, and offer private consultations. The private consultations are especially desirable, Puckett said, for young couples buying engagement rings. He added discretion in a small town is especially desirable.
The new shop will have front and rear entrances, and handicapped accessibility.
“The bank sold the property to First Baptist,” Puckett said. “They found out the main building was unsatisfactory, but are keeping a second building, and one of the parking lots. I’ll have the upper parking lot.”
Puckett said the building would keep more retail Downtown while expanding church parking. His present building at 1022 Main Street would be offered to another retail tenant.
“It’s going to bring more than one awesome place to shop, and that means people have more reason to come Downtown,” Puckett said.