New businesses abound in Kimberley

A flurry of new business activity all over town in past year

Ella Markan of the new specialty shop

Ella Markan of the new specialty shop

Kimberley has always offered a unique shopping experience, focused mainly on small business.

But the look and feel of that shopping experience is changing.

This past year has seen a multitude of new business — in the Platzl and down to Marysville — and these new businesses and ventures are taking Kimberley business in a new direction.

From a skateboard manufacturer to a custom electronics business to a distillery, Kimberley’s business scene is thriving and changing.

“It really has expanded way beyond the downtown core,” said Kimberley Chamber Manager Mike Guarnery. “And businesses are reporting good numbers this summer.”

The City’s Economic Development Director, Kevin Wilson says that, more and more, Kimberley is being seen as a place that can offer a place to go for a quality day out.

“You can plan a day, get a haircut, go for a meal, take a bike ride,” he said. “The trend with the American dollar means more U.S. visitors and we are seeing lots of regional visitors. People from Alberta are staying closer to home too.”

“The products our businesses are providing are really aimed at gathering and fun, especially the food and beverage businesses” Guarnery said.

“But it’s not just retail. We have a new veterinary clinic among other services, though retail is certainly driving it,” Wilson said.

Here are just some of Kimberley’s new businesses.

North Star Veterinarian Clinic

Scheduled for an early September opening, Dr. Kathryn Arbic will operate the veterinary service from the former Steeples Vet location on 550 Mark Street. Full-time veterinary services.

Healing Hollow

Offering alternative and  holistic health, aromatherapy and personal coaching, the Healing Hollow is back in Kimberley, opening their Platzl storefront last week.

Timber Hitch Coffee

A new coffee shop in Marysville, located in the Rustic Hutch building. A great location for the morning commute.

Bohemian Spirits

Bohemian Spirits is a new craft distillery recently started near Kimberley. The distillery is producing vodka and will soon release a gin. All products are small batch and hand-crafted with regionally sourced ingredients.

The distillery is owned and operated by Kimberley locals Wade Jarvis and Erryn Turcon.

Bohemian Spirits is focused on crafting fine products with local botanicals. “Our vodka’s wheat comes from Creston, and the forthcoming gin’s botanicals are a unique collection of some of the finest natural herbs and plants our region has to offer,” said Jarvis.

Vagabond Vodka is currently available at select private stores and Farmer’s Markets.

Arrow and Axe General Store

Arrow and Axe opened in the Platzl this past June and has proved to be an immediate hit. Offering  “A Life Mountain Made”, the upscale general store offers clothing, accessories and more for the outdoor, and indoor, mountain lifestyle.

The Shed

A new addition to the downtown dining scene, The Shed advertises a simple message, Beer & Food, which means a great selection of beer and a wide variety of inventive appetizers, salads and more. In the Platzl at 180 Deer Park.

Creme Cheese Shop

Specialty cheese and other related products. Home made ice creams, grilled paninis, and fermented products such as kombucha and ginger beer. Located across from City Hall at 349 Spokane Street.

Purcell Wellness

Registered Massage Therapist Jennifer Johnston opened Purcell Wellness in the Platzl last February. Her treatments draw from a combination of deep tissue, myofascial release, cranial sacral therapy and relaxation techniques.

Maker Space, Place Droid

Located in the former Edge Pub building in the Platzl, Place Droid is a custom electronics manufacturing business that specializes in efficient, small-batch manufacturing. The business also provides maker space for complimentary businesses.

Berley Manufacturing

The new skateboard manufacturing business  on Howard Street opened in 2014.

“They are running seven days a week, employing 20 people plus in three shifts,” Wilson said. “From what I hear they are banging out 500 skateboards a week.”

Tamarack Dispensaries

A dispenser of medicinal cannabinoid edibles and products, Tamarack Dispensaries opened their doors in Marysville in July.

“We are also seeing existing businesses coming back, like Revolutions Acupuncture which is back in business,” Guarnery said. “There’s a new shoe store coming and the gym in the old Legion building (Gym 67) opens this week. Blarchmont has a solid business core with the addition of Britner’s Fish and Chips.”

“There’s been a complete redesign of the Centex,” Wilson said. “It’s a different take on a convenience store with healthy snacks. And it has interesting meat products — grain fed, hormone free.”

A lot of these are value-added, niche businesses, Wilson said, and they are seeing strong local support.

“Most of these businesses have a strong local following that is complimented by visitors,” he said.

Another element to a rising business scene in Kimberley is the Farmers Market, Guarnery said.

“One week there were 41 businesses there. It’s really made the downtown vibrant on a Thursday evening. And it’s bringing out a lot of home-based businesses in the area.”