Seemingly since the days when Jesus was an apprentice carpenter, the only place in downtown San Diego to get hammers, nails and bathroom fixtures was San Diego Hardware. But it up and left the Gaslamp Quarter a few years ago, leaving downtown denizens wondering where they’d go to get copies of keys made.
The new spot for urban household needs: Ace Hardware (675 Sixth Avenue, between G and Market streets). The only hardware store serving 92101 has been open for a few weeks, and kicks off with a creative grand opening this weekend, running Friday through Sunday.
With Led Zeppelin playing on the store audio system, I perused immaculate aisles filled with drills, coffee makers and an interesting personal hygiene item called Anti Monkey Butt powder. They also have a “Best Of As-Seen-On-TV” shelf, featuring the PedEgg, Snuggies blankets and the ShamWow!.
All weekend, you can buy a 4-pack of Charmin toilette tissue for 50 cents. Ace Hardware also hopes to wipe up the market with several urban-assimilated specials:
--Friday is scheduled to kick off with a chain cutting ceremony by Mayor Jerry Sanders. Look for free coffee from Java Jones and cupcakes from Heavenly Cupcake. There’ll be free Ace caps given out, and members of the Tilted Kilt waitress harem will be on hand.
--Saturday is for the dogs. The first 250 pooches that show up get a free Doggie Poop Bag Dispenser. Breakfast goodies will come courtesy of Sweet Kneads, and the Fern Street Circus performs in the afternoon.
--Sunday participants in the Run For Literacy race get free sports bottles. Get a free reusable shopping bag—and save 20 percent off anything you can fit in it.
Ron Donoho, formerly executive editor of "San Diego Magazine," is a regular contributor to NBCSandiego.com who covers local news, sports, culture and happy hours.