Hometown Mercantile: The new face of LaFayette’s downtown scene

Published 9:00 am Friday, August 4, 2023

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The Greater Valley Area Chamber of Commerce and LaFayette community members welcomed a new business downtown called Hometown Mercantile on the Square on Wednesday with a packed storefront.

Business owners Steve White and Kim Langley, both LaFayette natives, will be offering cultivated local goods such as purses, candles, hats, pillows and custom goods. 

The store held a soft opening on July 15. Since then, the store sold out of the specialty pillows and is back-ordered. 

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White, a designer and florist in Newnan, said the shop will focus on offering unique locally cultivated products. Langley said they also hope to see the city becoming a destination spot for those in Auburn, Opelika and other nearby communities. 

“We hope to offer what people have to drive all the way to Opelika to get,” Langley said. 

Eventually, the business partners plan to open a venue in the storefront next door called The Venue on Alabama Avenue East. 

Mayor Kenneth Vines, Commissioner Doug Jones and LaFayette Main Street Director DeAnna Hand welcomed the business into the community during the ribbon cutting hosted by the GVACC Director Carrie Wood. 

“Anytime we have a new business here in the city of LaFayette, it’s always a pleasure to see each and every one come with your busy schedule,” Vines said.

White said their goal is to support the other local businesses in LaFayette and around the county.

“I wanted to give back to the community,” White said, who has lived in Newnan for many years. “I was ready to come back home.”

“One of my favorite things about this business is the name, ‘Hometown Mercantile,’” Hand said. “I love that that hometown feel is always in LaFayette. I was born and raised here, grew up here, and that’s what we’re about.”

Langley also said though they are here for the long haul, profit is not the most important thing to their business. As LaFayette natives, they hope to bring opportunity and a place for the community to gather.

“It’s not about what’s in here,” White said. “It’s about who’s in here.”

“If we’re nothing more than a gathering place for people to come in and just socialize, that’s good, but we do hope they’ll buy something,” Langley said. “It’s really about the community.” 

The business partners plan to work with and support other local businesses downtown like Blue Button Quilting and Gimme Some Sugar.