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Bennett’s Military finds new digs

Store to move into building farther south on LR’s Main

By Jack Weatherly

This article was published March 20, 2014 at 3:15 a.m.


Bennett’s Military Supplies is moving from 302 Main St. to 608 Main St. in Little Rock. Bennett’s owner Sheree Meyer said she hopes the store will be in its new quarters by April 1.

Bennett’s Military Supplies has found a new home - farther south on Main Street in Little Rock from where it has operated for 40 years, owner Sheree Meyer said Wednesday.

The new location will be the former Phillips Men’s Store at 608 Main St. Meyer will lease from Bob Oliver, owner of RAO Video across the street. Meyer said she hopes the store will be in its new quarters on April 1.

The relocation comes as the Fulk Building at 302 Main St., where Bennett’s has occupied the ground floor since 1974, undergoes a transformation to become home to the Cranford Johnson Robinson Woods advertising and public relations company.

“We are planning some new and exciting things to add to our product line,” she said, though she declined to explain.

As its name suggests, the store sells military supplies, clothing, guns and other weapons, some dating to the Korean War and World War II, as well as camping supplies.

Meyer and her husband, Doug, own the Fulk Building and scoured downtown for a good spot to relocate Bennett’s before settling on 608 Main.

Oliver said the 3,500-square-foot building until recently was occupied by ReCreation Studios. Studios co-owner Dan Kavanaugh said Wednesday that business was closed so that he and co-owner Camille Rule could further their educations. They will still offer private entertainment bookings, but not at that store location. The studio offered classes in fitness and in “Cirque”-style techniques such as aerial silks.

“Our two businesses will complement each other,” Oliver said of Bennett’s and RAO Video.

He said he bought the 608 Main St. building in February 2003 from Charles and Charlene Phillips.

While many buildings on Main are undergoing restoration, Oliver said he had no such plans for either of his buildings.

“It’s not that I’m totally against it,” Oliver said. But any restoration of a historic property can involve government entanglements, which he said he is wary of.

He said he is keeping an eye on the property just to the south of RAO, the facade of which was recently removed, revealing that the building had once been the location of the Arkansas Democrat.

A crew hired by Moses Tucker Real Estate removed the facade from the 98-yearold building last week, but the developer declined to disclose plans for the structure. Nafez Filat owns the building, according to county land records. Efforts to contact the owner were unsuccessful.

Business, Pages 27 on 03/20/2014

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