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Chet's Video Offers Terry's Ice Cream a Helping Hand

Chet Strout, owner of Chet's Video, has agreed to allow Terry's Ice Cream Shop to sell ice cream from a row of parking spaces reserved for his customers until the ice cream parlor can get back on its feet.

You may call it a case of one local business owner doing another a solid. You may call it a story of the "only in Marblehead" variety.

No matter what you call it, in an age of cut-throat business tactics, a recent gesture made by one local business owner can certainly be considered uncommon.

It was less than two weeks ago when Chet Strout, owner of on Essex Street, received word that had suffered such severe smoke damage in a that it would be forced to close its doors.

The July 13 fire, which local fire officials believe also resulted in the closure of - though Terry's is believed to have suffered the worst of the roughly $50,000 in damage.

Strout said in the days after the fire, he and his wife Carrie discussed finding a way to do something to help Terry's owner Carlos Rocha because they recognized that an unexpected closure during the height of the summer season would deal a major blow to the ice cream parlor.

So, Strout decided to open up a few of his parking spaces to Rocha, who has been parking his business' Ice Cream Truck in a roped off section of the lot from 7 to 10 p.m.

"His truck permit only allows him to sell on the street until 8 p.m.," Strout said, adding that he didn't think the gesture was "that much of a sacrifice for us."

Strout, whose business has thrived on Essex Street for almost two decades, said the decision to pitch in to help was an easy one for him to make. As for his customers, Strout said he has only received positive feedback about donating the spaces.

"We've definitely received some kudos from our customers," Strout said.

So, if you're looking for a way to beat the heat or suddenly have a hankering for that ice cream flavor you've been trying to live without for the last two weeks, consider swinging by the Chet's Video parking lot for your fix.

"So far, he's been doing really well with (the parking spaces)," Strout said. "At times I've looked outside and seen a line stretching down the street."

Bob Humenn July 26, 2011 at 08:07 PM
we've been a loyal customer at Chet's Video for many years, not only because of the videos. Chet and his family are a tremendous part of our community. Thank You Chet! Sincerely, Bob Humenn, United Martial Arts Center

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