SIOUX FALLS, S.D (KELO) — A downtown staple has been serving the community for 26 years, and now the store is getting recognition from the community.
“It’s like a part of home,” said Denise Ferrie, a customer.
Denise Ferrie has been a regular customer at Mrs. Murphy’s for several years now.
“It has brought joy to people. You talk about going downtown and you have to go to Mrs. Murphy’s,” Ferrie said.
Her mother was born in Ireland. She says it’s that connection that makes shopping here so much more meaningful.
“Being so far away from home, my cousins on my mother’s side, I feel like I’m connected to Ireland still by coming down and visiting with Dick and Sandy. It makes me feel like I’m back in the Glen,” Ferrie said.
Owners Dick and Sandy Murphy say creating connections is one of the goals they have when customers step through the door.
“You can come in and hear stories, but also tell your own stories. That’s what makes it such an experience, such an encounter. You want to keep doing that. The personal connection is is what’s so important,” said Sandy Murphy, co-owner.
“We’re part of a community. We’re part of a greater community with our downtown neighbors. We’ve created this space that people can enjoy when they come down,” said Dick Murphy, co-owner.
Recently, the Murphys were awarded the Spirit of Sioux Falls Award by Downtown Sioux Falls.
“Looking back and seeing the words in the nomination about customer service, and about people feeling really welcome when they come into Mrs. Murphy’s. I think that’s what made it so special,” Sandy said.
Tenley Schwartz with DTSF says it’s places like Mrs. Murphy’s that have shaped Downtown into what it is today.
“This award is really for people who have dedicated themselves to making downtown a better place who have real investment, and who have stuck around for a long time, and the Murphy’s just absolutely are those people,” said Tenley Schwartz, Marketing Director for DTSF.
It was the community within the Downtown area that led the Murphy’s to open the store 26 years ago.
“We’ve always known that this was going to be a focal point for what the city is about, I always used to use the reference of this as the living room of our city,” Dick said.
Dick says his family has a strong sense of Irish pride and heritage, and he wanted to share that with the people of Sioux Falls.
“This was like coming home for me. So in a sense, like returning to the old sod to start our, our pride in what we’ve been doing for all these years,” Dick said.
“The closeness to my mother. You know, and so that’s what it does. It just feels like home when you come here,” Ferrie said.
Now after 26 years, the Murphys say they are ready to retire.
“This is our wish we wanted to make sure that the continuation of our Irish Gift Store goes on and the downtown area so we have put a lot of emphasis on just that,” Dick said.
They hope to pass the business along to a family who cares as much as they do.
“They are leaving a legacy that’s going to stick around for a long time,” Schwartz said.
The Murphys have participated in the Sioux Falls St. Patty’s Day for the last 43 years.