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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Wednesday, August 04, 2021
Photo of Pipefitter on State Street.

The Pipefitter, a State Street smoke shop, closes its doors after nearly 50 years

Owners of the state street business The Pipefitter announced last Tuesday that they will be closing their doors permanently, joining several other local businesses who have had to close or relocate in the past year.

The Pipefitter, which initially opened on state street in 1972, was known for selling rolling papers, pipes, bongs and CBD products, as well as other novelty items, such as Halloween costumes, according to Madison.com. 

The owners of The Pipefitter announced its closure through a Facebook post where they state that their decision to close comes in the wake of financial troubles experienced in the past year. 

“Oh, what a long, strange trip it’s been. It’s been a difficult year, and we finally had to make the hard decision to close the doors on the Pipefitter legacy,” the post reads. “The store was lucky enough to serve Madison for almost 50 years. We met three nostalgic generations of shoppers who became a part of the evolution of our industry.” 

Although they referenced recent financial troubles, The Pipefitter did not provide an exact reason for their closure. The store temporarily closed in March 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and they never reopened. The Pipefitter’s storefront was also damaged during protests after George Floyd’s murder, which caused the business to shutter its windows.

The owners of The Pipefitter stated that they will miss being a member of the state street business community. 

“There’s really nowhere else like State Street. We sure will miss the eclectic characters and the progressive politics,” according to the Facebook post.

The Pipefitter’s announcement follows similar news from several other state street businesses, including Community Pharmacy and A Room of One’s Own, announcing plans to close or relocate to elsewhere in Madison. Additionally, a city commission is reviewing proposals to convert State Street into a pedestrian mall during the summer months, according to Madison.com

Although the Madison location is closed, the current owners have two other stores in the state — which they encouraged former patrons to visit in the future.

“If you’re even in the Milwaukee area, be sure to stop through Downtown West Allis and visit our sister store, Blue, at 7223 W Greenfield Ave, or make a special trip up to see our flagship store, Satori Imports, at 411 N Main St, in Oshkosh. It’s worth the drive,” The Pipefitter said on Facebook. 

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