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Ruhama's Closing After Five Decades in Bay

Whitefish Bay's yarn and needlepoint store is closing its doors with the retirement of owner Dawn Slugg.

After 52 years in business, Ruhama's Yarn and Needlepoint is closing its doors.

Store owner Dawn Slugg has been planning to retire for several years, but she was hoping to sell the store to one of two potential buyers. With both business deals falling through, Slugg is left with no other option but to close the store she has owned for the last 32 years.

"This decision was not made lightly and without reflecting on you, my wonderful and loyal community. You have enabled me to live my dream and for this I am deeply grateful," Slugg wrote on the Ruhama's Facebook page. "After 32 fun, challenging, rewarding and successful years it is now time for me to close this chapter and begin a new.

"From the bottom of my heart, I thank you for sharing your lives, your friendship and your love and passion for needle art with me. It has been a journey of a lifetime."

  • Feature story: New Friendships Form Around Age-Old Hobbies at Ruhama's

The store's original owner, Ruhama Weiner, opened the store 52 years ago on Port Washington Road, and three years later, moved to its current storefront at 420 E. Silver Spring Drive.

While Ruhama's customers will be able to travel to other yarn stores in the area, Slugg said Ruhama's was the last store in Wisconsin to sell needlepoint equipment.

Customers were sad to hear the news, and shared their memories on the store's Facebook page:

  • "I'm so disappointed. You're one of my favorite yarn stores. I always stock up there when I visit from California, because it's such a great place." - Carol Broome
  • " Wow. A sad moment. For many years I waited for Christmas to come in for my yarns. I live in Florida and loved to visit your shop every time I came home. It was part of my yearly ritual. I will definitely miss your lovely shop. Thank you for turning me on to fabulous textiles at Ruhama's!" - Anna Trelc Blangiardo
  • "So much joy and love emanating from this store into the WFB community and beyond. A salute to Dawn for her spirit, hard work and what she gave to all of us who live here." -Marilyn Merker Goldman

A store closing date has not yet been determined.

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