After nearly all the old town ways and old town shops have disappeared, a few relics of the past remain. One such is the Hurst Pharmacy and Soda Fountain in Bardstown, KY. Bardstown remains strong in it’s old-time flair with the downtown area lined with window displays that remind us of days past. Right at the corner of a turn-about is Hurst, which is first honest to goodness working Soda Fountain I’ve ever seen.
It has a cute little sign above the door reading “Try Hurst’s Famous Chicken Salad” and yes, they just serve a few basic sandwiches and soups. What you see in the picture is literally all there is to the tiny café and kitchen. I think its capacity might be 20 people if they were all very friendly. Maybe.
But the sandwiches are good, the sodas are mixed well and the whole lunch was a trip down the past. Spending time with my mother and my great-aunts there was a very fun adventure as they shared their experiences of times I never got to see in person.
All that to say that Hurst has stuck to it’s roots pretty darn well. It’s got the old fashioned feel going, despite a few modern appliances here and there.
Why hasn’t it died like so many others of it’s kind?
Well, I didn’t get to interview the store’s owners, but I would wager it has to do with the fact it seems to have expanded to take up two shops worth of space (indicated by it having 2 doors and 2 shop windows). Also when you enter you see something that sort of looks like a Cracker Barrel gift shop married a Walgreens. There’s cute little knick knacks and gifts of all sorts (and yes I bought something) but also it’s a working pharmacy with many of the amenities you might expect to find at a drug store. Not an inch is wasted, but it’s not over the top. Hurst has managed to evolve while still keeping true to it’s traditional past.
Bravo to Hurst, can you do the same?