Anybody out there still remember the sidewalk sales downtown in the sixties and seventies? My mom would drag all four kids from Dean’s to Horsley’s clothing to the Main Store to Broeker’s Department Store in search of bargains. Then to Van Ham’s for shoes. In between was all the really neat stuff for the kids. Toys at Soukup’s Hardware, Ben Franklin and Woolworth’s, school supplies at Erlenborn’s, trolls, candles, gifts and knick knacks at Jan’s Gift House. I think just about all the downtown merchants got involved except the Sears catalog store and the taverns. A cheeseburger from Bob’s corner was a great way to cap off the shopping day.
The best part for me though, was being able to hang around my grandpa’s Pharmacy with all the big kids working the drugstore’s sidewalk sale. There were toys, cameras, Zippo lighters, discontinued cosmetics, pen and pencil sets, Christmas leftovers and my personal favorite – the grab bags. I still remember scraping together a dollar for a bag and one of the big surprises inside was a men’s hair brush. Awfully exciting for an eight year old kid with a crew cut!
This July 13th through the 15th Ozzie’s is once again having our very own Sidewalk Sale. We will be dragging all sorts of bargains and deals out to the front of the store. Seasonal items from Valentines to Christmas, gifts, candles, puzzles and toys. We will have a huge display of discontinued and overstock items from our medical equipment department at extremely deep discounts. We will also have our prize wheel out for a chance to win an additional discount! Inside, we will be offering a 10% discount on all Melissa and Doug toys and Michel Design Works, our very popular line of fragranced soaps and lotions. Drop inside to our Post Office for a free gift and a chance to cool off. And don’t forget, Casey’s will have their grill out on Saturday and Sunday for lunch!
Another exciting tradition is our “Christmas in July” ornament display. For over thirty years we have been getting the new ornaments for the coming holidays in, up and displayed. Years ago it was the Carlton ornament line. Now we feature the exclusive “Old World Christmas” line. They are beautiful mouth-blown, silvered and hand painted glass ornaments. The designs range from traditional to whimsical. Come on in and check them out today!
And whatever you do, don’t forget to bring a dollar and a half to the sidewalk sale for a grab bag – hey, it’s inflation.
Bill is the current owner of Oswald’s Pharmacy. A 5th generation member of the Wickel-Oswald-Kester-Anderson family, Bill became general manager in 1979 and bought the business from his father in 1991. In 2004 Bill orchestrated Oswald’s move from Downtown Naperville to Naperville Plaza.
Bill graduated from Knox College in 1978 with a BA in Art, minoring in History.
A graduate of Naperville Central High School in 1974, Bill is a lifelong Naperville resident. Over the years Bill has served as a current member and past president of the Naperville Rotary Club, current member and past chairman of the Downtown Naperville Alliance, and as former Naperville Riverwalk commissioner.
Bill lives in Naperville with his wife, just a few blocks away from their grandchildren (the 7th Oswald’s generation!).