May 26, 2016

Partly sunny

Capells plan to retire from Elyria Twp. store

ELYRIA TWP. — Chuck and Carol Capell of Vermilion are living proof that couples who work together can stay together, but don’t expect the pair to offer any kind of hard proof as to why.

They just know it has worked for them for more than four decades.

The Capells celebrated their 42nd wedding anniversary this year and after 43 years are retiring from their business, Capell’s Hearth and Leisure at the intersection of Lake Avenue and Griswold Road.

“It’s the cornerstone that we have built our life around,” Chuck Capell said. “Most married couples cannot believe we have done that without killing each other. We really just try to leave the business at the business when we are at home.”

Capell’s started when they began selling power equipment like tractors, lawnmowers and chainsaws in 1968. It was long before the popularity of big box stores.

A few years later, Chuck Capell said they picked up an inventory of grills from another closing business.

Coincidently, Chuck Capell said he began having an affinity for the art of grilling around the same time. He has perfected his technique over the years by grilling and doing demonstrations for customers nearly every Saturday when the weather permits.

“My friends know it, too, because whenever we get together for whatever reason, I am in charge of the grill,” he said.

Fireplaces were the next items to be added to the store.

Finally, in 2004, the couple gave up selling power equipment and expanded to include awnings, patio equipment and umbrellas.

Now, Chuck Capell said the business will likely go into the hands of another. The couple has it priced to sell and hopes to have a new owner in place by Christmas. If not, they plan to close the doors and start on the next phase of their life.

“For the first month or two, we will do nothing,” Chuck Capell jokingly said while standing in the showroom Thursday. “And, believe it or not, I want to do something fun, like I’m seriously considering finding a part-time gig selling boats.”

An avid boater, Chuck Capell said the job would be more fun than work.

Carol Capell said she is looking forward to spending more time with their three grandchildren and traveling.

But that doesn’t mean that they will not miss the business. Over the years, Chuck Capell said they have amassed 15,000 loyal customers, many of whom have stopped by to say hello since learning of the couple’s retirement.

“A lot are glad to see we are retiring, but sad to see us go,” he said.

Contact Lisa Roberson at 329-7121 or

About Lisa Roberson

Lisa Roberson has been with the Chronicle since 2006, and covers Elyria city government and public education. She can be reached at 329-7121 or Follow her on Twitter.