The Vermont Standard – Singleton’s Is Coming To Quechee
Singleton’s in Proctorsville, a name synonymous with, “If we don’t have it, you don’t need it,” kind of general store, has broken ground for a new store on the south side of Route 4 near the blinker light in Quechee. The 7,000 square foot building being built by Dickinson and Barrows Construction of Woodstock will resemble the store that has been an integral part of the Proctorsville scene since 1971. Sonin- law of patriarch Tom Singleton, Gabriel “Gabe” and wife Jessica Singleton Hathorn will operate the new store, expected to be completed before year-end. Much like the store in Proctorsville, the new store will include a deli, a large produce section, a wide array of smoked meats, frozen heat-and-serve lasagna, soups and other convenience items, canned goods and specialty items, clothing, shoes, boots, honey, maple syrup, and much, much more. Brands like Merrill, Sorrel, and Icelandic are represented. A smoker resembling a maple sugar shack, together with a full-sized replica of a black bull, both trademarks of Singleton’s, will be an integral part of the new store location at Quechee.
Many old timers will remember the original Singleton’s General Store in Reading, opened by Tom’s parents Bud and Mary Singleton, which operated there between 1946 and 1971 before moving to the present location in Proctorsville. Second generation Tom and his wife Linn have carried on an enterprise that expresses their personality. Some walls are festooned with Tom’s vast collection of rifl es, a variety of humorous signs adorntheaisles. Apileofanimal traps decorate a spot beside the gun/ ammo counter. In the back of the store, a bright yellow Harley sits atop a platform, “A remnant of my mid-life crisis,” said Tom. It must have been a short one; the bike has less than 1,200 miles on it.
Smoked meats are a niche market in which Singleton’s excels.
During the winter months, it sells more than 1,000 pounds of smoked pepperoni and bacon a week distributed through Associated Grocers. The store itself regularly carries meats like quail, alligator, bison, elk and venison, items seldom seen in this region. A variety of Vermontmade cheeses are also popular items. It regularly sells about five 40-pound wheels of cheddar a week.
Now, a third generation will carry on the proud tradition of the Singleton family in operating the new general store in Quechee.
Jessica noted that in late spring, they assembled a focus group ofresidentsatthe TrapDoor Bakehouse and Café to gather ideas of community needs and desires. Gabe and Jessica are dedicated to fulfilling those needs.
In concluding the interview, Tom voiced his trademarks, “Singleton’s will soon be smokin’ and that’s no bull.”