Chelsea residents no longer have to drive miles beyond the town line to gas up their vehicles. Restoring gasoline service to Main Street just north of the village center, the Vermont 110 Quick Stop ends an 18-month period that witnessed Chelsea motorists driving as far as Vershire, South Royalton, Washington, and Williamstown in search of fuel.
The store, which is co-owned by Tim Ward and Dennis Clement, opened Memorial Day weekend, announced on June 15 that its gas pumps were open for business.
“It went absolutely viral with the feedback on how excited everyone was in the community to have the convenience of gas back on Main Street,” said Ward last Tuesday afternoon. “Anyone you talk to in Chelsea would agree that the town’s breathing a little easier—there’s a little sigh of relief.” For Strafford resident Barb Richardson, who has been running the register and making sandwiches at the Quick Stop for the past three weeks, the community response has been uniformly positive.
“People are really happy to have gas again,” she said across the counter on Wednesday morning, noting that the freshly-made sandwiches and salads have also been popular since the store’s opening. “They’re really excited for the deli and all the hot foods that we offer too.”
Ward, who also co-owns Chelsea’s Wagon Wheel Bar & Grill with his wife, Kelly, says he plans further growth for the new store including offering both on-road and off-road diesel in the coming weeks, as well as other services.
“We have every intention,” said Ward assuredly, “to be a big game reporting station … things are in the works.”
The familiar Main Street location— which once hosted Sanborn’s Harness Shop, will now be open as late as 9 p.m., Monday through Saturday, and until 7 p.m. on Sundays.
“I think it’s all good, positive energy that’s headed in a really good direction,” said Ward as he busily headed out the door of the Quick Stop on Wednesday. “The community is at rest again.”