By Dave Crawley

MCKEESPORT (KDKA) — A little store called Bloom’s Cut Rate has been a McKeesport landmark for 68 years.

If you think the merchandise hasn’t changed since then, well, it only seems that way.

It’s a store for all seasons – especially Halloween.

Barb Marinucci manages the shop for owner Kent Bloom, son of the late Ethel and Paul Bloom. The couple opened up shop in 1943.

Regarding Halloween, Barb Marinucci says, “Everybody always comes here for things that are odd.”

It wasn’t difficult to stock the shelves for Halloween because most of these costumes, masks, and games were in the same place last year. Not to mention the year before that, and the year before that.

“I’m not going to lie. I have worn this,” Barb says, holding up a McDonalds French Fries costume, vintage 1970 or earlier.

Regarding a plush bear with a 1989 t-shirt, she adds, “That’s one of the newest ones up there, actually.”

The antique figurines were new when first placed on the shelf. And a sign celebrating the store’s 60th anniversary has remained on the outside wall for eight years.

Like many independent, family-owned businesses, Bloom’s has felt the chain store pinch. Shelves aren’t stocked the way they used to be. But Barb concludes:
“We have a good time and have some laughs and talk about things, you know. I hear stories from the past and it’s real nice to hear that, you know. It’s real nice.”

And Halloween is always in bloom – at Bloom’s.

Watch & Listen LIVE