Biz Buzz, May 12, 2013

Michele McCoy always wanted to have her own store.

She worked for 10 years as a manager for Walmart, became a stay-at-home mom when she and her husband, Chris, adopted two young children, then began exploring spice store franchise opportunities.

They were quickly dissuaded by tens of thousands of dollars in fees and other rules and restrictions. They instead decided to do their own thing, opening A Country Cupboard, 2412 F Road, Unit 5, on April 15.

The 2,000-square-foot store offers 110 varieties of spices and dip mixes; an array of candy, including some hard-to-find retro brands; and cupcakes from Deany Cakes. It also features the wares of 15 local artists.

“The idea behind the store is we want to have the stuff you can’t go somewhere else and get,” said Chris, a 17-year Grand Junction firefighter.

A Country Cupboard orders spices in small quantities — as little as a pound at a time — which helps keep the spices fresh.

“We pay a little more in shipping, but we’re able to give a better product that way,” Chris said.

Business thus far is “better than we ever expected. Every week has gotten better,” he said.

A Country Cupboard is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. It can be reached at 260-1665

■ For eight years, Shawn Morrison had a good job with a Grand Valley paint company. But when the economy tanked a few years ago, he found himself working more out of town, spending months in another state or painting pipelines in oil and gas man camps.

That took a toll on his wife, Shawna, and their children, who now number five.

“When my husband came back, we looked at each other and said, ‘This family isn’t working without Dad being in it,’ ” Shawna said.

With enough money on hand, the Morrisons decided they’d start setting their own schedule — and keep Shawn closer to home — by launching their own painting business, Realistic Painting.

They’ll host a ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce at 
4 p.m. Thursday at 548 31 Road.

Shawna said the licensed, insured, family-owned business is certified by the Environmental Protection Agency to remove lead-based paint and uses eco-friendly paint.

Realistic Painting does both exterior and interior work and also installs wallpaper and borders and performs drywall repair. The Morrisons run the business out of their home for now, although Shawna said they would eventually like to move their operations into an office.

Realistic Painting is open from 
7 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day and can be reached at 433-6492.

■ Grand Valley microbreweries can hold their own when it comes to offering a tasty craft ale. Now beer aficionados can access here in town product from another brewery in the region.

High Country Beverage, a Fort Collins-based beverage distributor with locations in Grand Junction and Montrose, began distributing last month an assortment of beers from Moab Brewery to western and northern Colorado.

Johnny’s American IPA and Rocket Bike Lager are both available in four-pack, 16-ounce cans, while Export Stout, Hopped Rye and Scotch Ale are available in 16.9-ounce bottles. The beers are being sold at 20 liquor stores on the Western Slope, including five in Grand Junction: All Pro Liquor, Andy’s Liquor Mart, College Liquors, Fun Junction Liquors and Pete’s House of Spirits. The beer also will be available at Saturday’s Grand Valley Beer Festival.

Cody Carlson, general sales manager for High Country Beverage, said the distributor thought the partnership would be successful given Moab’s close proximity to Grand Junction.

He said High Country Beverage and Moab Brewery wanted to start with the brewery’s two most popular craft beers in the IPA and Rocket Bike Lager, then will add more beers as distribution grows.

It’s the first time Moab Brewery has distributed into Colorado, Carlson said.

High Country Beverage distributes to all of Mesa County as well as in Delta, Gunnison, Montrose, Ouray and San Miguel counties.

■ After choosing not to build in downtown Palisade and facing vociferous opposition from some residents who didn’t want to see a store at all, discount retailer Dollar General has opened off U.S. Highway 6 at the west end of town.

The 9,000-square-foot store officially opened at the end of April at 707 Elberta Ave. The business held a grand opening celebration on Saturday.

Dollar General spokeswoman Crystal Ghassemi said she didn’t know how many workers the Palisade store employs, though she said stores typically employ six to 10 workers.

Dollar General is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

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