Sarah McKnight just told me all about the progress they’ve made in the past year in Colfax, Washington. Lots of the ideas we talked about in August last year are now reality!
The new Colfax Mercantile Store is a shared building with room for 8 to 10 new vendors. They’re full up and have a waiting list! There’s women’s clothes, handcrafted soaps, and fun upcycled stuff (like a guitar wall clock). The commercial kitchen means they also have a cookie baker and a frozen yogurt place inside the Mercantile! The Chamber and downtown group also have their offices in there.
Each vendor works a set number of hours a week at the counter making sales for everyone.
You know how often we talk about shared retail spaces, and Colfax has really done well with theirs in just one year!
All that activity around the Mercantile has started even more good things.
Another local business is working on remodeling a double storefront building, so they can step up from their current single storefront. Inspired by the success of the Mercantile, they’re thinking of making their old building into a new shared space. Hey, there is a waiting list at the Merc, so it sounds promising!
There are a bunch of additional new businesses in the past year: a coffee roaster, a plant store that also started a botany club (smart!), a branch office of a veterinarian, a new restaurant, a new vintage place, the expansion of an existing retailer, and even more.
If you’re struggling to get businesses to be open weekends, you’ll love hearing that the Mercantile, the coffee roaster, the plant store and the new restaurant are open weekends! That helps apply a little positive peer pressure to get other businesses open weekends.
Here are some pics from the Mercantile, to help inspire your own one-year transformation.
Next week, I’ll share some of the art projects. (Hint: robot mural!)
I’m so proud of everything the people of Colfax have accomplished and the momentum that will carry them forward.
Keep shaping the future of your town,
PS – What’s new in your town over the past year? We often don’t realize how many positive things have happened until we take time to reflect. Hit reply and tell me one good thing in your town in the past year! (Or more than one good thing, if you like.)