Revelstoke – meet Christine Pavlik and Dawn Rinsma.
The two women are the new owners of neighbouring businesses on Mackenzie Avenue. Pavlik recently purchased Revelstoke Florist, while Rinsma is the brand new owner of Kidz on Main.
I met with the two of them last week to learn a little bit more about downtown’s newest business owners.
Christine Pavlik – Revelstoke Florist
Christine Pavlik is a biologist who moved to Canada to pursue her studies at the University of Northern British Columbia in Prince George.
She moved to Revelstoke with her boyfriend (now husband) Michal in 2009 and I actually was their roommate for my first 2.5 years here.
We lost touch, so it was to my surprise when I walked into Revelstoke Florist to meet the new owner and see Christine behind the counter. In the meantime, she and Michal got married and had two kids — Anton, 3.5, and Luca, 2.
One day, while walking downtown to the farmers market, Christine saw the for sale sign at the store. She was already thinking about going back to work because the kids were getting older so she started talking to former owner Deanna Ward.
“We’re both biologists by trade. Michal’s getting his PhD right now and there’s not a whole lot of ornithology jobs right now, so I thought it could be cool to go back to my roots,” Christine told me. “It’s one of those crazy things that ended up happening.”
She took over the store on Nov. 1, 2016, and closed for two weeks to give it a new paint job and do some other work.
“We hit Christmas right away. It was really busy,” she said.
Now that it’s calmed down, she’s hoping to put more of her mark on the store before Valentine’s Day. Her focus is on sourcing plants locally, which means from B.C., though the cold winter has made that a challenge.
“I source everything locally now whenever I can. 90 per cent of what’s in my cooler is from my B.C.” she said. “It’s getting tougher now because with all the snow in Vancouver, a lot of the harvest was killed by the snow.”
While she’ll continue to carry flowers, there will be a bigger focus on plants and natural gardenscapes. “We’re going to do succulent driftwood gardens,” she said.
Dawn Rinsma – Kidz on Main
I didn’t know Kidz on Main sold until I saw the ad for a “new owner sale” on Facebook.
Dawn Rinsma was in the back when I walked in. She led me through the packed storage room into her small office.
She and her husband Ryan, who works for CP Rail, purchased the store from Marie & Trevor Marback and took over ownership on Jan. 1. “We always wanted to be small business owners,” she said.
Dawn grew up in Salmon Arm but she has lots of family in Revelstoke and is no stranger to the community. She used to work in retail, but moved to Revelstoke last September and worked as an early childhood educator for the Revelstoke Childcare Society. “Now I’m back to retail,” she said.
She held the new owner sale last week to clear out the stock and make room for new product. One of her first plans is start selling non-toxic art supplies and offer art classes for kids age 3–5.
Her other plans include diversifying the products sold in the store by bringing in an additional clothing line at a lower price point, and bringing in clothes and accessories by local artisans.
She also wants to increase the amount of children’s accessories available – things like car seats, booster seats, exersaucers, and bottle accessories.
“We want to be that one stop shop for families with young children, or people shopping for gifts for grandbabies, nephews, and friends,” she said. “There’s a lot of things we want to bring in that aren’t currently available in Revelstoke.”
She said to expect to see more sales as they clear out the current stock in order to add new products.
“I’m excited to meet a bunch of the locals and introduce ourselves,” she said.