Source: Post – Tribune - By Michael Gonzalez | All Things Michael
GARY — Michael Jackson and Jackson family fans will soon have a place to get their gear and memorabilia locally, officials say.
A city official confirmed that Katherine Jackson, matriarch of the musical clan, is completing permits to open a business on the city’s near west side.
Trent Jackson, a nephew and traveling companion of Katherine Jackson, said the family will convert the house directly east of the family house at 2300 Jackson St. to a gift shop with plans to open Aug. 15.
The annual Michael Jackson birthday celebration begins two weeks later.
The family will make a formal announcement in the coming weeks, Trent Jackson said, but the house will be a pick-up point for fans who buy merchandise online. There will be no money kept at the house, and the pick-up service will be for those who buy a certain amount of merchandise.
Trent Jackson, who lives in Calabasas, California, with other family members, declined to discuss the dollar amount of the purchases that can be picked up, and he did not offer details on the goods that will be sold.
The Jackson family will reinvest the proceeds into the neighborhood and, possibly, Roosevelt High School, which is directly west of the house.
“We want to keep the block looking nice,” Jackson said. “We want to help out with the neighbors here and help out with the school.”
On Wednesday, on the fifth anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death, Trent Jackson and a woman could be seen cleaning the inside of the proposed shop. The lawn outside the small house is well manicured, and it appears much work has been done on the building. Like 2300 Jackson St., the property is surrounded by a high, black fence.
Chelsea Whittington, Gary’s communication director, could not offer details about the gift shop plans, but she said such a project would be “a great complement to the Fuller Center housing build” in the area later this summer.
From Aug. 24-29, the Fuller Center, a faith-based agency building low-income housing around the world, will host a house-building blitz in Gary, building two new homes and renovating two more.
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