Dale's Jewelry is open for business
Dale Wright is back in business.
After about a four year 'retirement,' the well-known Perham goldsmith and jeweler has set up a cozy little shop in a corner of the Ghost Runner building.
Wright is the former owner of Perham Jewelry - a store he ran for more than 35 years. He sold that shop about four years ago to Tom Gould, and the business stands today as T.A. Gould Jewelry.
With merchandise of his own left over after the sale, Wright never completely left the business. He's continued to sell what was left of his inventory, and has done some jewelry repair work on request. For a short time he had a showcase display of his jewelry set up inside Make Me Wine.
But Wright wasn't ready to venture wholeheartedly back into his craft until recently. He wanted to "let Tom have plenty of time to get established" first, he explained.
Since a few years have gone by, and T.A. Gould Jewelry has built a reputation for itself, Wright said, he felt the time was right to pursue his passion again.
"I love to create; I've been doing it for so many years," he said in an interview. "Everything to me is a piece of art."
Wright has been making jewelry since he was 16 years old. He was introduced to the craft in 1952 while working as a part-time delivery boy for Bramson and Hostetter Jewelry Manufacturing in Omaha, Neb. The boss took Wright under his wing, Wright said, and, "I took to it right away."
After that, he was hooked; through the years, he continued to hone his skills. He worked as a jeweler in Omaha until moving to Perham in 1972, where he established Perham Jewelry - a full-sized shop with several employees and a large selection.
He quickly fell in love with the community, he said, and Perham became "home." He put his roots down, maintaining the business for more than three decades and also joining the Perham Police Reserve, on which he's been an active member for 30-some years.
He can often be found volunteering at different charity events, such as the recent Perham Police Reserve food drive.
"I've always felt it's better to give than receive," he said.
Wright's new shop, called Dale's Jewelry, is much smaller than his last - he has no employees, other than himself, and keeps a limited selection of merchandise in stock. He's back doing what he loves, and he's satisfied with that.
"With my room here, I can't tell you how happy I am," he said of his new space inside Ghost Runner (located on Main Street). "They made me a nice nook. There are three rooms full of beautiful merchandise here - it's not just a jewelry store."
Ghost Runner sells a variety of decorative gift items and other goods. Wright is selling rings, watches, costume jewelry and other pieces, and has been known to do custom work on request.
"It's a little of this and a little of that," he said.
Dale's Jewelry will be open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.