Just imagine owning a business on the Ocean City Boardwalk for over 50 years.

Sam Koperwas doesn't have to imagine that possibility, because it's been his life.

Sam and his long-time friend Jeff Sherman were the owners of Henry's Landmark Jeweler, a mainstay at 12th and the Boardwalk since 1972.

The business is closing this year, but Henry's Cape May store at 407 Washington Street is remaining open.

The Ocean City Boardwalk Association presented Henry’s with a commemorative piece of the Boardwalk this week as a thank-you for so many years of wonderful memories.

Sam and Jeff still joke about deciding to go into the jewelry business back in the day. and not knowing anything about it.

Henry's website tells the story of two friends deciding to open a business on the Ocean City Boardwalk almost on a lark.

It was 1972 when Jeff Sherman and Sam Koperwas -- friends from Little League (Jeff, centerfield, cleanup; Sam, second base, last) decided to open a store on the Ocean City boardwalk.  Sell cool jewelry, neat clothing, stuff like that.  They knew nothing about the business.

 

But the two friends had a plan.  Sell unusual, beautiful, well-made designs at an affordable price, provide outstanding service, seek out friendly and helpful staff, and their little dream shop could eventually earn the confidence of Ocean City customers...and hopefully turn a profit.

 

Not the strongest business plan, they both realized -- Shark Tank would send them packing -- but at least they would have a good reason to keep coming back to Ocean City each summer, the place they loved.

Longtime customers and fans of merchandise from Henry's Landmark Jewelers will tell you that the store was one of the gems of the Boardwalk and will certainly be missed.

Sam Koperwas was philosophical about the store's closing.

“Henry’s is not the space - it’s the experiences we’ve had these 50 years. We grew with the town and we appreciate Ocean City. We are leaving with fond memories.”

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