The Snap Shop
Say hello to the stalwarts of Railroad Street, Great Barrington; say hello to Steve and Tony Carlotta of the Snap Shop. They have been in business since April Fools’ Day in 1972. That’s 41 years, no fooling!
But it’s no wonder that they have held down the fort for so long, even in the face of drastic changes in the photography world. They still believe that old-fashioned good customer service is the key to a successful business. Says Steve: “We show a real good attempt to solve people’s problems without it being a long drawn-out affair. Walk in the store, bring your camera with you and we’ll get you going.”
Customers appreciate Steve and Tony’s expertise and dependability, and keep coming back for both conventional and digital cameras, and for equipment, service, and printing. Steve admits that the advent of digital photography has reduced the number of people printing photographs, but he likes to remind people that a photograph still looks better if you print it, frame it, and hang it on the wall. “It kind of gets them going,” he grins.
Lately, he has been doing an increasing amount of restoration work, recapturing customers’ files that have been accidentally deleted. So if you think you have lost your photos don’t despair, head to the Snap Shop!
Steve grew up in Housatonic, where his mother worked in a mill making bedspreads and his father worked in a factory that made paper-cutting machinery. Though he does not idealize the factories that used to pollute the river, he can imagine a Berkshire economy founded on an interconnected web of green manufacturing businesses employing 40 to 50 people each. “I get inspired thinking about this stuff,” he says.
Steve might tell you that the Snap Shop has succeeded “by accident,” but that’s impossible to believe. Their commitment to customer service, technical expertise, and to the community is obvious. According to Steve and Tony, “a good business helps other businesses just by being there,” so it’s only natural that they have been part of the BerkShares initiative since the beginning. At the Snap Shop you can pay for 100 percent of your purchase in local currency, with no restrictions. Steve says, “The value of BerkShares is the support of the local economy,” and encourages customers to “bring ’em!”
The Snap Shop
14 Railroad Street, Great Barrington, MA