Local store helps folks celebrate special occasions of all kind

November 15, 2004|JOHN T. DAVIS

If you have one of those "Big" birthdays - the "Big 5-0," for instance - coming up, you had better hope your friends don't know about the Parties Plus store in Danville's Greenleaf Shopping Center.

Why? Because the store has a whole corner devoted to the kind of gifts that your friends and co-workers might find amusing - even if you don't.

There's the "Old Geezer Lost Your Marbles Replacement Pack," the "Over The Hill Crying Towel," and the "Over the Hill Survival Cane," which includes a magnifying glass, cure-all pills, a horn and false teeth.

"This little corner has done better than the whole store," said co-owner Lisa Ledford. "There are some really cruel people in Danville."


But lest you get the wrong impression, only a small part of the store Ledford and co-owner Alvita Carey opened a year ago is devoted to the torture of those who have passed chronological milestones. Most of the store's merchandise is designed to help people of all ages celebrate birthdays, weddings, retirements, holidays and other events in a wholesome, positive manner.

The two came up with the idea for a party supplies store after learning through personal experience that such items weren't available in Danville. Even now, they said, many local people aren't aware that they can buy those items in Danville.

"We try to get things that no one else in Danville carries and save people the trip to Lexington," Ledford said. "Most people go over there to get stuff because they think you can't get it in Danville. We've been open over a year, and we still have people come in every day who didn't know we were here."

Party items in school colors

Carey and Ledford sell party items, such as plates, cups, napkins, tablecloths, etc., in the colors of area schools. They have big table rolls for such things as wedding receptions, retirement dinners and anniversary celebrations, and they have the kind of stuff kids like for their birthday parties, featuring popular TV-show or movie themes. The store also carries in stock more than 100 different mylar and latex balloons for birthdays and other occasions.

It also can order special items.

"With two weeks' notice, we can get just about anything in that we need," Ledford said.

Ledford, who works part-time as a hairstylist in Nicholasville, also makes a variety of wax and candle items in 64 different scents, which are sold at the store. She makes teddy bears dipped in candlewax that are used as air fresheners and makes whole pie candles that give off the scents of various pie flavors.

Carey, who worked at Matsushita Home Appliance Co. for 18 years before opening the store, said she enjoys helping people celebrate birthdays and other events.

"All of the little kids come with an idea of what they want" and they get excited when the store has the party theme, such as "Strawberry Shortcake," they were hoping for, Carey said.

"It's fun to help people who have an idea of what they want to do but nothing definite and you help them get it all together," Ledford added.

Parties Plus is in Greenleaf Shopping Center on Lexington Road in Danville. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The store may be reached by phone at (859) 936-9107, by fax at (859) 936-9108 or by e-mail at

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