Family patriarch Nordy Rockler opened the doors of his first store in 1954 to supply his fellow craftsmen with knowledge, friendly advice, and a large selection of tools for at-home woodworking projects. Now, the chain of retail outlets brims with more than 20,000 tools and specialized woodworking equipment. Next to a steely rainbow of hinges, casters, and screws, a supply of lumber and exotic hardwoods provides planks for building tree houses or just leaving around as a warning to uncooperative trees. The tenor buzz of power tools operated by newly knowledgeable guests drifts from educational sessions on operating equipment and woodworking.
Cincinnati Habitat for Humanity aims to eliminate substandard housing by building, renovating, and repairing homes in partnership with low-income families. As part of the process of receiving a Habitat home, these partner families commit to 500 hours of sweat equity, helping to build the homes and then making zero-interest monthly mortgage payments. Cincinnati Habitat volunteer crews build about 20 homes a year in the Cincinnati area.
Umber's Do It Best Hardware inspires checklist completion with its massive selection of tools and supplies, ranging from housewares and cleaning products to plumbing and painting materials. Tune up the family car with a fresh oil filter ($6.79) and spark plugs ($2.29 each), then apply Turtle Wax Express Shine ($6.79) to buff the chassis to a driveway-illuminating gleam. Home-care supplies such as pesticide-free flytraps ($5.99 each) politely encourage pesky pests to depart the premises without using harsh chemicals or space-consuming bouncers. For DIY types, tools such as needle-nose pliers ($5.99) facilitate jobs in narrow spaces, and a plethora of painting equipment provides the perfect opportunity to re-tint your domicile or finally finish that fresco depicting the Miracle on Ice.
Indy Nut House aims to help guests spruce up or fix up their houses with the equipment and ideas needed to transform living spaces. The store overflows with hardware and tools, furniture, and lighting fixtures.
If its full name––Two Fat Guys Summerfield Ace Hardware––isn't a clue about this store's unconventional nature, maybe its pet shop is. Or perhaps that distinction belongs to its owners' related endeavor: not only do Rick and Smokey inspire ambitious homeowners with rows of home-improvement implements, but they also encourage handiness by taking to the airwaves with a weekly hardware radio show. Summerfield Ace Hardware also doubles as a U-Haul Center, and animals are welcome, especially if they're able to drive a U-Haul but also if they just want to sniff around the pet shop. Prepping for barbecue season is a cinch on these premises: in the words of Rick and Smokey, "With a name like the Two Fat Guys you might expect that we have a complete grilling center and we offer assembly and delivery." Salespeople are trained to answer nearly any home-improvement question their customers ask, and a wide selection of hardware, paint, plumbing, and electrical supplies shares space with gifts, home decor, and housewares.
Taylor Rental helps create memorable graduations, company picnics, birthdays, weddings, barbeques, and more with a wide array of party supplies. Entertain guests with casino games such as blackjack ($49.50 per day) or carnival games including bingo, which comes with 100 cards, a bingo wheel, and balls ($21.50 per day). Partygoers can mingle and flirt in a forest of balloons sprouted from an assorted package of five-inch inflatables ($8.99) and filled with a tank of helium ($28, fills about 40 balloons) able to sustain squeaky voices for up to five hours.