Blooming beautiful in Barry’s Bay

Florist Pam McNichol said the time was right to make Church Street Flowers more visible along the Opeongo Line in Barry’s Bay so she worked with realtor (and her new landlord) Kristen Graves-Kuiack on their new location between V&S Stedmans and Cat Nap & Lazy Dog. Pam said with pride that they didn’t miss a single business day due to the move. Above: Church Street Flowers, Opeongo Line, Barry’s Bay

Church Street Flowers has gradually become a bigger presence in the community during the past couple of years. Pam and husband, Dave, live in Killaloe and she told The Current they are in business here “for the long term.” While she has operated a Pembroke location for some time, she has local roots here and has planned the Barry’s Bay location to be her “retirement project” twenty years from now. Naturally, it’s a family affair and Dave contributed his skills, notably transforming the mud room into a walk-in cool room linked to air conditioning. This means that Church Street Flowers in both Barry’s Bay and Pembroke have walk-in cool rooms which Pam said helps them to ensure a quality product.

Customers have a big choice of merchandise in the shop as Pam offers a selection of gift items to complement both the fresh flowers and the many different potted plants she stocks.

Sigrid’s Naturals — featured vendor

“It’s hard to believe that Sigrid’s Naturals has been in business for 17 years,” says owner Sigrid Geddes. She likens her natural skin care business to a child. She has birthed it, nurtured it, and watched it grow. In that time Valley residents too have witnessed the business develop and blossom. But, says Geddes, now that her “child” is 17, like all teenagers it’s time for it to leave home and get out into the big world. Thus, she jumped at the chance to display her products at Church Street Flowers.

Sigrid Geddes and her display of Sigrid’s Naturals

A welcome by-product of moving the Sigrid’s Naturals retail shop out of her home in Wilno is that Sigrid gets to reclaim her residence. She plans to continue manufacturing her products at home until eventually finding a suitable workspace in town. She also reassures fans of the Madawaska Valley Studio Tour that they will still be able to visit Sigrid’s Naturals in Wilno during the summer and fall Studio Tours – but the new location at Church Street Flowers means they can purchase Sigrid’s Naturals products any time through the year, right in the heart of Barry’s Bay.

Pam and Sigrid have known each other for a long time. Although some of Sigrid’s products are available elsewhere throughout the Valley, her display at Church Street Flowers contains the full line of Sigrid’s Naturals. Pam’s retail philosophy is to “complement without competing” against whatever else is available nearby. That’s why she believes Church Street Flowers is such a great fit in its new location – both with Sigrid’s Naturals as its featured vendor — as well as with all the other retailers in downtown Barry’s Bay.

Emotional connection

Pam explained that there are always highly emotional reasons to purchase fresh flowers. She praiseed fulltime employee Charlotte Croft-Larocque from Palmer Rapids, saying that she is very empathetic and can quickly connect with customers’ needs. Charlotte for her part said, “I am proud to be a member of this community. Pam and I are very grateful to Valley residents for shopping local and supporting small businesses during this period. We consider ourselves so lucky.”

Pam McNichol with blooms in the cold room
Charlotte Croft-Larocque

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