By Polly Keary, Editor
Guilt Free Goodness closes storefront
Guilt Free Goodness, a gluten-free bakery that opened on North Kelsey in 2011 and quickly developed a regional following, has closed the storefront bakery and deli, but is continuing to bake in bulk.
“As some of you customers know the exponential growth in our wholesale sales here has blown through the roof! Due to this growth we have made the immediate decision to close down the storefront,” the store announced on its Facebook Page last month.
The plan now is to create an e-commerce site where people can order products for drop off at various locations statewide.
And Guilt Free Goodness has products in a number of local businesses, including Sweet Indulgence, Paesano’s Coffee, Adams Bistro and other places.
Gumby’s Emporium closes on Main Street
Main Street is losing another of its anchor stores with the closure of Gumby’s Emporium, a quirky and eclectic gift shop that opened in April last year.
“We are trying to sell, and if we can’t find a buyer we will will be closed by the end of April,” said owner Robin Clark.
Part of the reason the store is closing now is because of the closure of the Hitching Post Restaurant at the end of this month, because it drew traffic to the gift shop, as well.
And the store could not endure any drop in already slow traffic, said Clark.
“We wanted to give Monroe a try, and everyone seemed like the store, but we didn’t have enough traffic,” he said. ”And what’s strange is Main Street gets so much car traffic it’s amazing.”
The store put everything on a 20 percent sale Thursday, and will run sales through April.
Sweet Deal Produce changes hands and name
Kimi and Aaron Brown, operators of First Down Catering, are expanding their business ventures with the purchase of Sweet Deal Produce, a fresh fruit and vegetable stand on SR 203 in the Tualco Valley.
Sweet Deal Produce opened there last spring under the ownership of Mike Bennet, and featured a lot of locally-grown produce, as well as low cost fruits and vegetables sourced worldwide.
“We really are trying to tap into our local resources and farms to bring the freshest produce from all over our valley and surrounding areas,” said Kimi Brown.
The Browns plan to expand on that business model when they open at the end of the month as First Pick Produce.
“We are going to keep it local and fresh with our products, but also offer other events and services like fresh smoked BBQ on the weekends as well as music, farmers’ markets, etc.” said Kimi Brown. “We are also planning on doing planting classes for the youth in Monroe and also for the adults in Monroe or from around the area, as well as weekly featured recipes, baskets for needy families and much, much more.”
There are going to be classes on planting, local country music, and family barbecues.
Consignment store open on Main
Deja New, a new clothing consignment store, has opened in the Savoy Building near the Sky River Bakery in downtown Monroe.