BY KATHY GIBBONS
TRAVERSE CITY — The Cherry Stop in downtown Traverse City is changing its name and trading places with the business next door.
Cherry Stop co-owner Jamie Roster said she and husband Nick will close their 211 E. Front location Jan. 6 and expect to reopen by Feb. 1 under the new name, Old Mission Traders, in a smaller store at 215 E. Front.
"We have a little bit of dead space in the store we're in," Roster said.
In the meantime, Momentum, now at 215 E. Front, will go into the current Cherry Stop space.
"They were looking for something bigger and we were looking for something a little smaller, so it worked out perfectly," Roster said.
Momentum Manager Mary Foster said the move will make it possible for her store to nearly double inventory.
"We're going to carry more varieties of T-shirts and sweatshirts, and more name-brand fashion clothing," she said.
Roster said the Cherry Stop brand will continue.
"We've got a pretty good nationwide following on the Cherry Stop (website) and we don't want to do away with it," she said. "Cherry Stop is going away as a store name, but as a brand, it will remain."
Reopening as Old Mission Traders paves the way to expand with their own gourmet food line, and allows the owners to carry other Michigan-made and -related products.
"We do intend to introduce a product line under the Old Mission Traders name to showcase other things grown in Michigan — not just cherries," Roster said.
To start, the Rosters will produce an Old Mission Traders vinaigrette made with local maple syrup and a pear vanilla bean dessert sauce. They'll continue to make their products in the store as they have for the last three years.
Cherry Stop originally opened in another location in 1995, moving downtown in 2002. The Rosters bought the business in 2005.
The Cherry Stop website will remain active, and the Rosters will roll out a new website and logo for Old Mission Traders.
"Our online shop will continue while we are closed," Roster said. "We'll try to accommodate people who want stuff during that time."
Momentum should reopen sometime in mid January, Foster said.