Archived Story

T&L is the one-stop shop in Belhaven

Published 9:41pm Tuesday, November 13, 2012

BELHAVEN — Twenty dollars goes a long, long way at T&L Variety Store.
Terrance Glasper aimed to fill all of Belhaven’s shopping needs in one place. Since he opened T&L Variety Store in July, he has stocked shelves with everything from men’s coats to candy.
There is nothing that Glasper won’t try to sell in the 254 E. Main St. shop.
High-heel shoes flank the back wall, and a photography studio claims one corner. Colorful beach cruisers take up random floor space.
“It’s a variety store. You’ve gotta have more than one thing to try,” Glasper said. “I’m just trying to do something different.”
And he believes he’s succeeded.
“There’s no place in Belhaven that does what I do. Where are you gonna find an arcade where you can buy a hair weave? In what other store can you get a wig and a pig’s feet?” Glasper asked. “That’s why people keep coming back. They never know what they’ll find.”
Swan Quarter residents Hattie and Jennifer Peterson said they visit T&L as often as they can.
“We try not to miss this store when we come here. This is our type of store, the things that we like. And the clothes are just right,” said Hattie Peterson.
“And the staff — him and his wife — they’re good people,” added Jennifer Peterson.
Glasper said he and his wife also plan weddings. His wife makes wedding cakes; he serves as a DJ and can take photographs.
They also do floral arrangements. Handmade wreaths and flower arrangements are displayed in the store — between the photography studio and the ice-cream counter.
Glasper plans to expand his ice-cream counter, adding a table, chair or two for those who would like to enjoy their cones at the store.
The seating will come in handy Tuesday nights when Glasper holds outreach ministries with his aunt, Josephine O’Neal.
Glasper said the response to the outreach ministries has been wonderful, a real blessing for the community. Attendees formed a task force of volunteers to help local churches with painting and upkeep.
“We try to influence anyone about Jesus and try to uplift them, left them know someone loves them,” Glasper said.
Can’t make it Tuesdays? No worries, a stack of the weekly Bible-study questions and prayer calendars sit on the front counter near displays of jewelry and key chains.
Tuesdays aren’t the only draw. Thanks to a game room, including a pool table, pinball machines, jukebox and arcade games.
Glasper hosts pool tournaments and spades (a card game) tournaments.
“If you get the right two or three around, we end up throwing darts or playing spades. There’s nothing to do here,” Glasper said of Belhaven. “So, you’ve got to make it up as you go.”
The variety store opens at 9 a.m. (except on Saturdays when Glasper tries to catch some of the yard sale crowd at 7 a.m.) The store closes at 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 9 p.m. on Saturdays (or whenever the last tournament ends). The store opens from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.

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