INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. - In its 39th year, Village Ace Hardware continues to provide quality items and a family atmosphere.
Current owner Byrne Falke Jr. took over the reigns from his father in 1986. The store has been family owned and operated since it opened.
"(My dad) made me an offer I couldn't refuse," Falke said laughing, of taking the business over. Falke was working as carpenter and construction supervisor, giving him the background and experience to own a hardware store.
Falke explained that his father bought the old Village Hardware store in 1974, when he simply couldn't find the items he needed in the shop.
"He thought he could do a better job," Falke explained.
The store has been thriving ever since. In 1978, the store moved to its current and larger location in Raley's Shopping Center.
These days, the store has about 25,000 items, including various tools, electrical and plumbing equipment, cleaning supplies, lights, barbecue grills and more. As one would expect, winter items are the most popular now, including ice melter and ice scrapers.
The store also boasts a large paint section, complete with matching experts and a computerized paint matching machine.
"We can help match any color," explained Falke, who added that the store also keeps on file old colors that people have purchased, in case they need any touching up in the future. "We try to be helpful and help people with whatever project they need."
On top of the 25,000 items it currently houses, the store also has access to an additional 75,000 items through its dealers.
"If you want it, we'll get it," he Falke said.
For Falke, experience at Village Ace Hardware is key. Most of the employees at the store have at least five years of experience, and some have been with the store for 20 years.
"We try to be the local, convenient hardware store," Falke said.
But it's not just about hardware supplies and turning a profit for Falke, who lives in Incline Village. Community involvement has become a large part of his business.
Village Ace Hardware hosts an annual customer appreciation day, complete with a free barbecue and live music. The shop also donates to various causes, most recently the Incline public schools' boosters clubs.
"We try to support education in particular," Falke said. "I love the town. The community is great ... Our customers are our friends."
At the end of the day, it all comes back to the customer and helping out the community, Falke said. After nearly four decades of success, Village Ace Hardware looks forward to the future, and continuing to help out whenever needed.
"I love talking with people and helping them solve a problem, or help someone out," he said. "It feels good, it's a worthwhile thing to do."