An Eastport woman celebrated the grand opening of an inspirational and memorial gift shop on Main Street in Center Moriches Friday with the support of family, friends and local officials.
The store is called Gavin’s Treasures, and it’s named in honor of owner Tova Keblish’s son, Gavin Keblish, who died unexpectedly at 23 years old more than two years ago.
“Oh, God this is so crazy. Thank you to everyone,” Keblish told the crowd at the event. “I appreciate you supporting my dream.”
Gavin rode motocross from 5-20 years old, and Keblish’s friends made a mosaic out of the trophies he won. Keblish said she looked at that every day and it helped inspire her to share with others “a place for peace and serenity.”
The former buyer for technology and retail companies said she got tired of the corporate life and left her job in October.
“I said, ‘I guess I have to do something.’”
That led to Gavin’s Treasures, which is filled with many Long Island carvings, art pieces and wooden plaques with inspirational or funny sayings.
Longtime friend Phil Masterson, 43, of Center Moriches, custom made the countertop and several items in the store using recycled materials.
“I’m so proud of her,” Masterson said of Keblish opening the store. “Anything I can do to help her I will. She’s just a great, inspiring person.”
Keblish said she hopes to bring in inspiration speakers, mediums, life coaches and have other workshops.
Additionally, she created a scholarship called Gavin’s Understanding that will go to a student in the Eastport-South Manor School District. She will present the first $1,000 scholarship on June 7. She said the scholarship is for students who might be “overlooked or that missed sometimes but are really going to be successful in their lives.”
Keblish will hold monthly raffles with donations from vendors to help fund the scholarship.
“I think that this is a story that connects to us all,” added Keblish’s Eastport neighbor Elan Torpey, who was at the ribbon-cutting. She and her husband Bart made the mosaic. “And [Keblish] is able to help people who have been through similar tragedies. And maybe make them laugh, too.”
ABOUT THE STORE
333 MAIN ST., UNIT 2
Owner: Tova Keblish