The social boom and bust of downtown of Vankleek Hill

downtown Vankleek Hill

Sure it’s after 6pm, still, you’d think somebody would be walking around. Surely there’d be someone out who assumed someone else could own a store that was open until 7pm.

Unfortunately, the only reason to be on Main Street, Vankleek Hill, after 6pm — the VKH Dépanneur (convenience store), burned to the ground last week. So no more ice cream, no more gatherings of parents and their kids after soccer games, no more opportunities to meet the future mother of your children.

There is still one convenience store left on Main Street, Lalonde’s Dépanneur, but it’s way off in the distance. And while it’s open until 9pm, it’s closer to being a 50% off $1-Store with milk, and a few chairs for the elderly to check their Nevada Tickets. There are three restaurants on Main Street, two of them fairly high quality, but they’re only open for lunch. Then there’s the Windsor Tavern, which is open until 1am, but that’s mostly where the elderly go with their Nevada winnings from Lalonde’s.

So the only anchors left are the two banks, the post office, the pharmacy and the hardware store. All of them will continue to bring people from all over to Main Street during the day, but none of them can offer the social aspects of taking the kids, or your girlfriend, for a walk to find a movie and snacks for a Friday night in, like a convenience store can. The VKH Dépanneur was an important piece of the local kids’ social lives.

So something has to change quick, because the only thing left for the kids to do on a Friday night is to get drunk, go to to the hardware store to buy a hammer, and wait for us to use the ATM.

Vankleek Hill Photos copyright

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