Patrick's Store in 1919.
Rico's first store. It was on Mendon Street.

Pictures show the grand opening of Rico’s Food Center after the old store was torn down and the new one opened. On the left is Rico Calarese holding up the first dollar taken in at the opening.

                      Now and Then – Henry Patrick’s Store/Rico’s Food Center

Henry Patrick, whose father, Delano, was a member of the Hopedale Community, started his grocery business in Hopedale in 1867. He eventually had two stores; one in the center of town and one at the corner of Route 16 and Hopedale Street. (Patrick’s Corner) The store in the center, shown in the top several pictures, was bought by Rico Calarese in 1956, and operated under the name, The Food Center. After using the old building for some years, Rico built a new store behind it. When it was completed, the original store was razed to make room for a parking lot. The picture just below the one showing the house demolition was taken by Hopedale historian Winogene Noyes during the brief time when the new building was nearly finished, but before the old one was torn down. Some years later the store closed, and the structure was converted into an office building, as seen in the picture at the bottom.

At the election in November of 1970, breaking with a tradition that went back to the days of the Hopedale Community, the town voted to allow the sale of wine and beer. In March 1971, a package store was added to the Food Center.

Here’s a bit more from Rico’s daughter, Alberta Lachina. “The Food Center was the name of the first store my father initiated after leaving employment at Patrick’s Store on Hopedale Street.  This store was opened for business in a small white building  on Mendon Street, a few doors up from where Patrick’s Corner Store was located.  The year was around 1950.

As time went on, my father purchased the H.L. Patrick store on Hopedale Street, next to the Drug Store.  After several successful years in this location, it was determined that a new, larger building was needed to accommodate the customers of Hopedale, Milford and other surrounding towns.  A barn and cottage located further back on the property were torn down, making way for the new market.  Following completion  of the new building, further back on the property, the original Patrick’s Store (which had continued being called the Food Center) was torn down.  When the new supermarket was opened, it was renamed Rico’s Supermarket.

In 1970, the town voted to allow alcoholic beverages to be sold in Hopedale.  My father applied for the liquor license, which was approved by the town.  A small corner of the new market was designated as the “liquor department”

At one time or another, all members of my family worked in the store… My father, mother, my three brothers and myself.

  Henry Patrick’s Store                Patrick’s by Peter Hackett 

Leola Sterns’s Memories of Patrick’s   

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