Shop Local Spotlight: Melissa at Catch&Release Merchants

Today marks the return of the Shop Local Spotlight, where we take a moment to introduce all of our wonderful partners and their businesses. We are pleased as can be to introduce Melissa from Catch and Release Merchants on Frankford Avenue. 

Melissa is not only a Shop Local partner and a KCFC member, but one of our newest board members!  Her experience and involvement with her civic organization, greening projects and her new Sustainable Book Club (the first book is "Good Morning Beautiful Business" by Judy Wicks: if you are interested in joining, just swing by the store and get details!), along with her general enthusiasm for this area, all make her a really wonderful choice to start off with! After reading her interview, my only question was, what's a castelvetrano olive?


What is your store all about? What items do you have? What items do you love? What makes you pick the items you pick?

Catch & Release Merchants pays homage to the general store of the past, where things were made close to home and built to last. Our inventory includes quality items for the home and body, American hand-picked goods, vintage and new. We print our artwork on organic tees with eco-friendly inks, create one-of-a-kind housewares and accessories, and refurbish antique items in the shop.

It is important for us to be environmentally responsible when selecting products to carry in our store. We work hard to offer natural and sustainable products, and encourage our patrons to embrace the quality of goods that have already stood the test of time.

We followed these same standards when rehabbing the building. We used recycled materials, soy based insulation and paints, tankless hot water, energy starr HVAC, low flow toilets, a storm water collection system, rooftop garden, low-E triple pane windows, passive solar design, white rubber roofing, and 100% wind powered electricity.

Why did you open your store where you did? How did your store come about?

In 2005 we began building what is now Catch & Release Merchants. At that time, the Frankford Avenue Arts Corridor was in the beginning stage. The energy of the neighborhood was growing and full of potential. Finding a live/work space that needed love and attention became priority. After many years of hard work and determination, our dream is now a reality.

What is your hope for this area? What changes have you seen in the neighborhood that get you excited?

Small businesses recirculate significantly more revenue into a community than big retailers. It would be wonderful if the neighborhood became a destination filled with specialty places one can only experience here. There has been major growth in the area already and it doesn't seem to be slowing down. The vision of a variety of interdependently owned shops coming together and filling the corridor makes us smile.

Why did you become a Shop Local Partner? Why do you think the Co-op is important?

We have been a part of the Sustainable 19125 and 19134 neighborhood initiative since the beginning. Green actions, big and small, make this place that much better. Supporting the local economy strengthens our neighborhood. Catch & Release Merchants are strong advocates of shopping locally and want to thank those who do. Having the Kensington Community Food Co-op in the neighborhood has health, environmental, social, and economic benefits and of course great food! We wish to promote and support this cooperative and look forward to the brick and mortar.

What is the product/item you most hope to see at the KCFC when we open the doors?

The Kensington Food Co-op is working diligently to open the doors; we understand the time and work it takes to bring a vision to fruition. It would be great to see the KCFC offer items that we have never experienced before. Trying and testing new things makes cooking exciting. Maybe we will find our new favorite food items there. We would be thrilled to see castelvetrano olives or even a peanut grinder grace the shelves.


Catch & Release Merchants

"Quality Goods Created Statside"

Hours: Thursday-Monday 12pm-7pm

Address: 1832 Frankford Avenue

Open Late every First Friday with homemade sweets.

$10 off any purchase of $50 or more for KCFC members


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