After 44 years, Linda McGuire to sell Char-Mae

Linda McGuire pauses by her station within Char-Mae, which she has owned for 44 years and will be selling effective with the new year.

After 44 years, Char-Mae owner Linda McGuire is handing her scissors over to a new owner. Effective Jan. 1, current employee Jessica Lay will take ownership of the business.

After working at Char-Mae since 1972, McGuire bought the business in 1974 from its founders and namesakes, Charlotte Hartter (Char) and Alta Mae Hopp (Mae). Hartter and Hopp had opened it in 1967.

“I’m not sure why I wanted to own it,” McGuire said. “They were both ready to sell, and I guess the time seemed right.”

A lot has changed in the salon business since that time, McGuire said.

Linda McGuire stands in front of Char-Mae, which she has owned for 44 years and will be selling effective with the new year.

“We use to have a lot of standing appointments [for ongoing care of hairstyles, such as perms],” McGuire said. “Now a lot of people do their own hair, and mainly haircuts and colors. There are not as many perm waves as there used to be.”

The salon business has been a blessing to her family time, McGuire said.

“I have been able to set my own hours, and I didn’t have to miss things that my three daughters did when they were in school,” McGuire said. “I have enjoyed being active in community service and school activities, and I could set my hours then, also.”

McGuire said she had not planned on retiring this soon, but circumstances have changed that.

“I want to thank all my customers for allowing me to do their hair, and for doing business with me these 44 years,” McGuire said. “I appreciate and am very thankful to have been in business this long. I hope that people will be as good to Jessica as they have been to me.”

Longtime employee Debbie Frederick said McGuire has always been a great boss, and a friendly face to all who come into Char-Mae.

“She just loves this community, she loves her customers like family, and she loves everyone she has worked with,” Frederick said. “And we and they all love her.”

Once she gets her health issues taken care of, McGuire said she hopes to come back to work — now as an employee, instead of an owner. However, she said she is not sure how soon that will be.

“Until then, I will miss my customers. I will miss all the special talks and the person attention with everyone,” McGuire said. “They become families to you. You talk about their families, and even though you don’t meet them you feel like you do.”

Open House

To celebrate McGuire’s 44 years owning Char-Mae, an Open House is being held in her honor. The Open House will be held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 29, at Char-Mae, located at 910 Main Street in downtown Sabetha.

Amber Deters116 Posts

Amber Deters is Co-Editor of The Sabetha Herald, where she has been on staff since 2005. She specializes in school board, election and legislative reporting, as well as photography and page and advertising design. Amber is a 2005 Kansas State University graduate with a degree in journalism and mass communications, print journalism sequence. She lives in Sabetha with her husband and three children.

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