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Manlius woman opens gift shop in Limestone Plaza

From left to right: Eileen Helmer, JoAnn Purcell, Fayetteville Mayor Mark Olson and shop owner Wendy Lee and her parents, Lynne and Jack Reading, cut the rope during the grand opening of Paola Kay on March 10.

From left to right: Eileen Helmer, JoAnn Purcell, Fayetteville Mayor Mark Olson and shop owner Wendy Lee and her parents, Lynne and Jack Reading, cut the rope during the grand opening of Paola Kay on March 10. Photo by Ned Campbell.

— The ribbon-cutting ceremony for Fayetteville’s newest specialty gift shop, Paola Kay, was missing just one thing — a ribbon.

“It was a boat rope that we cut because Paola Kay was the original boat that my great grandfather named after his wife, my great grandmother,” owner Wendy Lee told the Eagle Bulletin following the ceremony on Saturday, March 10.

Lee, of Manlius, has wanted to open a shop for 20 years. With her one daughter in college and the other about to graduate high school, now was the perfect time.

Paola Kay features great gifts for weddings and anniversaries and for realtors to give to their clients, Lee said.

“There are lots of gifts for girlfriends and hostesses,” she added, “and I’ve worked really hard at finding some great things for men.”

She said about 60 percent of the shop’s items are made in the United States. The shop’s hickory stick candles come from Old Forge, and the barn board shelves are made by local artisan Doug Jarvis.

Lee collected the finely crafted gifts sold at the shop at 105 Brooklea Drive during trips to Atlanta and New York City, where she has perused the work of many artisans.

“It’s just a collection of things that I’ve always loved and could never find in Syracuse, so that’s what’s here,” she said.

Fayetteville Mayor Mark Olson was on hand to congratulate Lee on the opening of the store, which he says is a welcome addition to the village’s Limestone Plaza.

“It’s always exciting to have a new business, and it’s always exciting to see people that are willing to put their time, their talent and their treasure into our village,” he said.

Ned Campbell is editor of the Eagle Bulletin.

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