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Party Harty Battles Pop-Up

For 28 years, Party Harty has been a Westport favorite. They’re the go-to place for birthday supplies, graduation balloons, decorations for the holiday du jour: Thanksgiving, New Year’s, Memorial Day — you name it.

The next holiday is Halloween. And Party Harty is worried.

Before Halloween last year, a Party Harty customer posed with the Haunted Tree Man.

A temporary pop-up shop has opened not far away on the Post Road, at the site of a former furniture consignment store. It’s big; it’s bright orange — and it’s temporary.

“We give our heart and soul to the community to help celebrate Halloween,” Party Harty’s owner Susan Marshall — who admits it’s important to her bottom line — says.

She’s concerned about the precedent: that insta-stores will come and go, drawing customers while not contributing to the community in the long run.

Party Harty is part of Westport. They offer discounts to schools, town organizations, the library, non-profits and religious groups. They — like their next door neighbor Mitchells — are always ready to give a donation or buy a program book ad.

“Give us a chance,” Marshall says. “Don’t assume that a ‘Halloween Store’ will offer anything more than we do. We’ll be here year-round — and hope to continue in a community-minded way.”

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