By Steve Hubrecht
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A local woman has taken over the Valley Dollarshop and re-invented the business.

Nicole Baes became the owner of the Valley Dollarshop last February, a month or so before the COVID-19 pandemic hit the Columbia Valley and radically altered just about every aspect of life. Taking over a business just as the pandemic started has come with some challenges, but as Baes explained, the upshot was that “it’s allowed us to really dig in and better organize the store.”

The Treasures in the Wind antique store that had previously been in the Valley Dollarshop moved out and Baes and her staff have turned that part of the store into a party supplies section. The party section is filled with balloons, streamers, party favours, pinatas, glow sticks, gift bags and more.

Baes has added a new line of greeting cards, and revamped the store in many other ways. The store also now does special orders, if you are looking for items in greater quantities.

“It’s been a process, but it’s been rewarding to make the changes. We’ve gotten quite a lot of compliments. People come in and say it’s so different, and it looks so much brighter,” said Baes.

Baes was born and grew up in the Columbia Valley. She worked as a nurse for years, before switching careers three years ago, and then eventually deciding to become a business owner. The Valley Dollarstore is her first business venture.

“I realized it would be nice to be my own boss,” said Baes. “It’s been a learning curve, but I’ve got some great employees now, we work really well together and things have been going well.”

The Valley Dollarshop is having a ‘first birthday’ special, celebrating the anniversary of Baes taking over the store, running from Jan. 15 to Feb. 6, offering 25 per cent discounts on selected highlighted sale items, including arts and crafts, health and beauty items, stationery, home items, pet items, toys, home hardware, tools, party supplies, vehicle items, kitchen items and batteries. Each day is different in which items will be on sale.