Owner set to retire

Dave Mayer’s mood is jovial.

“I once had a lady selling me a china set. She was trying to tell me it had two soup tureens, but instead she said soup ‘latrines,’” he said. “I got a kick out of that!”

The 66-year-old has owned the Millsboro Bazaar, at 238 Main Street, for over 30 years. The antique store carries vintage clothing, glassware, china and furniture, but specializes in costume jewelry. It’s one of those hidden gems that jewelry aficionados feel fortunate to stumble upon.

Mayer grew up in Baltimore, where his family was in the jewelry business. He was always interested in antiques and started collecting when he was a child. As an adult, he opened a similar shop in Seaford, which he ran for four years before purchasing the Millsboro building.

“I love buying for the store; I love the people that come in here,” he said. “Millsboro has been very good to me.”

But when an offer was made on the building recently, he decided to sell.

“I’m going to retire. I’m getting older and I’ve made a good living,” Mayer said.

Mayer has also worked as a night auditor at the Rusty Rudder in the summertime for decades, a job he will continue. He also cares for his 93-year-old mother.

New jewelry at the Millsboro Bazaar has already been marked down by 50 percent. In the coming weeks, pending the buyer’s inspection, the full store will go on sale. The store will close around Labor Day.

Mayer said the new owners plan on specializing in mid-century modern antiques.