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Heavy rains keeping a local business’ doors closed beyond lockdown

After nearly a year and a half of business owners opening and closing their doors, and adjusting businesses strategies to adapt to all the curveballs the pandemic threw at them, the last thing a small town business owner needs is to close its doors for repairs. However, that’s just what has been happening in Greater Napanee with Pet Panache. 

Pet Panache business front, as shown on the business Facebook page.

On Thursday, Jul. 1, 2021, after a day of heavy rain, issues with the roof began at the business on Dundas Street in downtown Napanee. Pet Panache owner, Sondra Elliott, closed the doors two days later for repairs.

“Pet Panache Is temporarily closed due to an issue we had on July 1 with the roof. I am waiting for advice from professionals to see where we need to go, but until then the store will remain closed,” Elliott updated her customers on social media. She later wrote that she hoped it wouldn’t rain.

But between then and now, there has been a significant amount of rain in the region, which has kept her doors closed. However, worried for the well-being of her four-legged clients, Elliott has been accepting ‘curbside’ orders and even delivering pet food to those who have reached out to her.

“While repairs are being planned at Pet Panache I am able to access the store, although I am not supposed to be having anybody in shopping right now,” she wrote on July 10, adding that she would be able to fill orders for pickup outside of the store. “Particularly food is what I’m more concerned about, not so much treats and toys. Just send me a messenger note and we can connect. If in a reasonable distance, I can deliver,” Elliott offered.

Sondra Elliott, owner of Pet Panache, posts to Facebook showing what it has been like running a curbside business business during repairs.

Since then, she has been busy delivering pet food to her clients as a means to keep their furry companions healthy, as well as keep the business running. She shared some of her frustrations with the situation on July 15, with thanks for all the continued support she has received. 

“It’s going to be interesting keeping Pet Panache functional out of the back room while we undergo the changes that are going to be required to keep the store open,” she wrote. “People are calling in about their orders and I do appreciate it. I’ve made a couple of deliveries today, so thank you everyone for your kind words of support.”

As for Elliott, she is pushing forward with optimism and thanks to her community for supporting her.

“I’m waiting for some repairs to be done, and then will be back in business,” Elliott told The Kingstonist.

Elliot indicated on an update published on Sunday, Jul. 25, 2021 that she is now moving back into the building, however, while that is taking place, Pet Panache can be accessed in its temporary setup via the building’s back door.

Updates and progress for Pet Panache can be viewed on its facebook page here

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