Residents of West Point, Valley, Ala., and Lanett, Ala., came together Thursday to honor a longtime businessman who has been selling records and music supplies to mayors and other important folks since they were in short pants.
“He never tried to run us off, and sometimes we actually did buy something,” said Bob Wilkinson, a member of the local Rotary club who shopped in the store as a youth.
Harris Nader, who opened Nader’s Music with his brother George 64 years ago, was given a special ceremony in honor of his closing and retirement, complete with marching bands, former employees and customers and even his very own platinum record.
Harris Nader will close the store and retire at the end of the month. The Rotarians were on hand to honor him and George, a longtime Rotarian who died three years ago.
“We all have memories of coming here as a child,” said West Point Mayor Drew Ferguson IV, who admits to having his own musical aspirations.
“One of you looked at me with a look that said ‘Maybe you shouldn’t do that,’ and that helped to steer me in the right direction,” joked Ferguson, who is now a dentist.
Marching bands from Valley and Lanett high schools played outside in the cold and rainy weather in Nader’s honor as his years in business were remembered. The city presented Nader with a proclamation backed with a platinum record – the award given to musicians who sell more than 1 million records.
“If anyone deserves a platinum record it’s you,” Ferguson said.
Nader thanked residents from every nearby community who have shopped in his store over the years, along with his former employees.
“We do the best we can and we leave the rest to the Lord,” he said.