EAST VILLAGE — Ame Ame, a specialty store that sold fashionable rain gear and gourmet candy, closed Friday after two years of business.
"I just turned in the keys," said Teresa Soroka, the store's owner. "Ironically, it's raining today."
Soroka, who cited the East Village's high rent as one of the reasons for the closure of the store at 318 E. Ninth St., hopes to keep the business alive through her website and possibly by opening another location.
Soroka notified customers about the impending closure through an email blast in mid-October.
"People showed up and they brought flowers," she said. "It was really surreal, almost like leaving college."
Customers came from all over the city, and some even drove from Boston and Washington, D.C., she said.
On Facebook, people left encouraging messages on the store's page.
"You were a sweet (no pun intended!) presence on 9th Street," wrote Ellen Temple Fagan. "Fabulous endeavors are ahead!"
In Japansese, Ame means both rain and candy. That's part of where the unique concept for the store came from, Soroka said.
"I wanted to do a grown-up candy store," Soroka said. "There's nothing better than eating candy and watching a movie on a rainy day."