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Bayside hardware store shuts its doors after nearly 80 years

Owner Joe Lamel will say goodbye to Posner’s Hardware & Locksmith, which is set to close Nov. 21
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Posner’s Hardware & Locksmith, which has been a mainstay in Bayside since 1939, is closing its doors for good.

On Wednesday, Nov. 21, longtime owner Joe Lamel will say goodbye to his beloved business at 47-28 Bell Blvd. The Bayside native and current Long Island resident started working at the shop as a college student and eventually became the owner.

According to the owner’s son Dana Lamel, they had been trying to find a buyer for the past two years as his then 69-year-old father was preparing for retirement. But they could not find one that suited their needs.

“People were interested, but it’s a very hard business to sell because we give knowledge along with the product,” Dana Lamel said. “It’s hard to find people who have the knowledge to be able to run the store properly.”

Before working at Posner’s, Joe Lamel was a stocker at the now-defunct E.J. Korvette discount department store but was unhappy with the job. In 1964, he saw an ad for the hardware and lock shop and started working for its original owner Ben Posner. Back then the store was located around the corner from its current location.

“I was always handy even though I didn’t know one-tenth of what I know now,” Joe Lamel said. “I’ve been solving people’s problems for the past 54 years.”

Lamel bought the store from Posner’s son Morris in 1974 with his former business partner and moved it to a bigger, cheaper location on Bell Boulevard.

Their key and locksmith services had become a boon to their business, with city agencies, the police and local schools utilizing their services.

But Lamel said that online sellers like Amazon have been a detriment to business over the past few years. He recalls customers showing him items that he sells at the store, which online retailers were selling at competitive prices with next day delivery and free shipping. Lamel noted that the internet age has made it hard to compete.

“It’s sad that we can’t keep the store running for the community,” said Dana Lamel. “There will no longer be any store like us.”

One of Joe Lamel’s best memories from the past 54 years was doing business with “kids of people who were kids when I started.”

He shares that he had second and third generation customers who would frequent Posner’s. Some of his old employees have also called him up to wish him luck and offer their help in the upcoming weeks.

Now Lamel is looking forward to the future. He said that he and his wife plan to put their house up for sale and buy a used RV.

“We’re going to travel the country like we did in ‘72 when we were a couple of hippies,” Joe Lamal said. “Everybody’s gotta do what’s best for them.”

He added that he’s been fortunate to have his wife, son, daughter and two grandkids, most of whom have worked at the shop with him and came from California and Florida to help him out.

“I’ve been very lucky in this life,” Lamel said.

Posted 12:00 am, November 9, 2018
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Reader feedback

JJK from Bayside says:
Best of luck to you Mr. Lamel, and thank you!
Nov. 9, 5:25 am
rob from Bayside says:
I hope it is replaced by a nail salon. Its so hard to find one around here.
Nov. 9, 6:42 am
Joey from Bayside says:
Hear comes a new whore house
Nov. 9, 6:52 am
Goodluck from Queens says:
Oh good luck to them. They were the only ones who knew anything about making keys. They were always so helpful when I went there too. So I'm sorry that this place is closing down but I wish them so much luck. In today's market it is extremely tough to stay in business against big companies. I'm sure the place will just end up to be something useless to the community like a "massage parlor".
Nov. 9, 8:25 am
Jay from Bayside says:
Or a Korean Church tax haven.
Nov. 9, 8:46 am
Man sad from Bayside says:
Nah it will become another dumpling place or Chinese food restaurant.I mean like there isn't 2 on that same block as it is . We will miss u guys always bought things and supplies for projects from you.
Nov. 9, 10:08 am
Roe from Bayside says:
So sad to hear you are closing!! I will always remember the concern and kindness you showed to me and my family over the years. Always helpful with anything I needed, no matter how small. The closing is an end to a generation! We will miss you! & The Bicycle Man! Best of Luck to you and your family on your next adventure. Happy Trails-
Nov. 9, 10:19 am
Joe from Bayside says:
Hope it becomes a place that white people want. You know....like stores that they never really go into but complain when it goes outta business.
Nov. 9, 5:15 pm
To Joe from Bayside says:
See right away you go to the bull about white people .Are you unhappy with everyone but your own kind. Shut your mouth what are u anyway bet u wont tell us you racist prick .
Nov. 9, 7:21 pm
Micky from Queens says:
Look at this buffoon above me who posts under different names pretending to be different people calling someone racist. THere are plenty of bars and pubs on Bell already like local that are like whore houses. Only difference is the ladies in there’s give it up for a drink.
Nov. 11, 10:27 am
Micky from Bayside says:
What dumbass I happen to be angry dad anytime u wanna meet. And I'm not white I'm mixed actually proud native american that lives in bayside my whole life .Joe keeps going at people. If anything I should be most mad at white people.
Nov. 12, 1:02 am
Angry dad to micky from Bayside says:
Screw you dont come at me saying I change my names . Haven't seen u post once left wing moron .
Nov. 12, 1:08 am
Angry dad to micky from Bayside says:
This country doesn't recognize native Americans for anything compared to everyone else .
Nov. 12, 1:13 am
Angry dad to micky from Bayside says:
We are talking about a hardware store on the other side of bell not bars.I guess you are one of the few people that couldn't pick up girls or guys whatever u are into.I am not judging you from those bars.
Nov. 12, 1:30 am
Celtic from Bayside says:
I say a new Asian massage parlor for sure. The 111 pct needs to collect. Useless lowlives.
Nov. 12, 3:28 am

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