Molly DiLena (left) and her husband, David (not pictured), have purchased Union River Book and Toy Co. from Michael Curtis (right), who opened the store in 2010. ELLSWORTH AMERICAN PHOTO BY ZACH LANNING

Main Street toy store is changing hands

ELLSWORTH — Ownership of the Union River Book and Toy Co. is changing hands this summer.

Michael Curtis, who opened the store back in 2010, will retain ownership of the building at 100 Main St., but the store will be run by Ellsworth residents Molly and David DiLena.

“We’re really excited to be a part of the community here on Main Street,” said Molly DiLena, who has been helping Curtis around the store and getting a sense for how the business is run before the planned handover on June 1.

“We think the downtown area is really starting to come up these days. We’re looking forward to getting to know the other owners on the block and we’re also very open to hearing from people on what they want to see in the store.”

Curtis is happy to have the DiLenas come in and keep the business going as he looks to take a step back after 12 years running the place and navigating the store through the pandemic.

If not for the DiLenas the store may have had to close, which is not something Curtis wanted to have happen.

“People are very interested in keeping things open in the downtown area, they’re very interested in keeping things going,” he said.

This won’t be a full retirement for Curtis, as he will still have other responsibilities.

“On top of this store, Michael has several other properties that he manages, which will still be a full-time job for him,” DiLena explained.

“Part-time,” interjected Curtis, who is hoping this sale will allow him to spend some more time on personal pursuits. “Fingers crossed that it’s only part-time.”

On top of expanding the store’s game selection, the biggest change the DiLenas plan to make is to reopen the store’s lower floor and make it available for events such as game nights, book clubs, or even magic shows.

“I know my kids would love a magic show,” DiLena said.

Zachary Lanning

Zachary Lanning

News reporter Zach Lanning covers news and features in the Ellsworth area. He comes to Ellsworth by way of New Jersey, which he hopes you don't hold against him. Email him at [email protected].

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.