Madiera Beach’s Scavenger House

Another feature whereupon I find a locked-up, possibly abandoned business, and circle around it for weeks until a sign of life surfaces. Then I rush in, take note of every line, snippet, and detail, before the window of opportunity closes, and the shop locks up again.

Madiera Beach’s Scavenger House

Tragedy shines a light on a local enigma

All it takes is one pass down Madeira Way, with one errant glance at the Scavenger House (15008 Madeira Way), to be entranced by its mystery.  Its front door, shrouded in an American flag and crowned with a dusty, antiquated movie camera, only serves to intensify this sense of wonder.
The Scavenger House has been closed for months; leaving the public wondering just what the store is.  While longtime Madeira Beach residents may remember the store in its original incarnation, when it was run by Larry J. Peruzzi, and wonder why it’s now shuttered.  

Peruzzi’s daughter, Tony Jo, is aware of the speculation.  Seeking to assuage the town’s concern, she has placed a sign on the door stressing that “yes, the [Scavenger House] is still open.”

Tony Jo was busy giving the store a “trial run;” i.e. having a miniature sidewalk sale showcasing some of her smaller wares (jewelry, belt buckles, pins, etc).  Tony Jo ran this sale while she was simultaneously cleaning up the Scavenger House in preparation of its grand reopening.  (The store having been recently burglarized, its interior wasn’t yet open to the public.)

Tony Jo explained how her father had been an avid “antique collector and musician” all his life.  Having recently passed away, Larry Peruzzi left his family a lifetime of collectibles.  So many, in fact, that Tony Jo was now “[spending] days going through the storage unit,” while deciding what to display.
Tony Jo plans to officially reopen the Scavenger House soon (the week of August 28th), while Military Honors for Larry J. Peruzzi will be held at 1:30 PM on Friday, September 3rd, at Bay Pines National Cemetery.

As far as thrift stores go, this place looked stellar, more novelty items and aged merchandise than the old lady clothes you usually find. Unfortunately its doors stayed close after my one, brief visit.


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