What happened to and what is that red building on the corner of South and Main Streets?
If you were stuck in , then you probably noticed something strange in the neighborhood as Lord's, the "anchor" of Main Street was in the process of being removed of its traditional, landmark green and covered in a brick-like red.
So what's going on?
Rest easy, Medfielders. The new-look building is still Lord's at 446 Main St. – the same location it has been at for 54 years – and it will continue to be the Medfield business the community has embraced for 71 years and counting. It is simply getting a "fresh look," according to owner Bill Kelly and his son Tom and daughter Nancy.
"It needed to be painted anyway so we decided to spruce it up and change the color," said Bill Kelly, who has owned the store since 1953. "The wood trim will be a cream color ... it is time for change."
Bill Kelly's daughter, Nancy Kelly-Lavin, said everyone in town who has noticed the change has had an opinion about it.
"A lot of people have come in and have asked about it. Of course everyone is telling us what color they think it should be ... at least it's not purple," she said with a laugh.
Bill Kelly's son Tom, who along with Nancy, help run the store, said the paint job is just another way to keep the community interested in Lord's.
"You know why we did it?" Tom asked. "To get people talking about Lord's again and noticing [the store]. People come in, ask about [the new color] and [we] can get their business out of it."
Nancy added: "It's almost like free advertising. Lord's is supposed to be green. We know that, but we decided to do something different."
Bill Kelly said the "makeover" should last a "couple of days" before the store's new-look will be complete.
This is not the first "major change" the department store has undergone, according to the Kellys. About every seven years, Lord's undergoes some type of "major project" – building an addition, renovating interior space, adding parking behind the store – and the customers feel a vested interest in the projects.
Nancy shared a "display window" story in an interview with Medfield Patch reporter Theresa Knapp in the Dec. 10, 2010 article: "." The story goes something like this:
The Kellys decided to eliminate the mannequin display windows and replace them with 'modern' corkboard displays that offered more versatile display options.
"Customers came in, they called, they were upset about the display windows but by the time we stopped, it was too late on one side," said Nancy.
The window was gone, the architect was not happy, but the customers had spoken and the other display window was saved. And that's how a successful small-town family business can survive in today's economy - that and a new paint job once in awhile.
While the new paint color to the building's exterior hardly qualifies as a "major project," it has served its purpose - calling those passing by to attention, similar to you noticing a new haircut on an individual you see regularly.
Lord's is standing out again, just as the Kellys intended - and the beat goes on for the "heartbeat of the community."