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Thread: If you opened a storefront business, what would it be?

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    Cyburbian Midori's avatar
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    If you opened a storefront business, what would it be?

    I ate in a trendy-ish downtown coffee shop this morning and re-awakened the entrepreneur itch. If you could start a small town main street storefront, what would it be?

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    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Midori View post
    I ate in a trendy-ish downtown coffee shop this morning and re-awakened the entrepreneur itch. If you could start a small town main street storefront, what would it be?
    Used bookstore/new bike/kayak/canoe shop. Preferably, adjacent to a body of water (river, lake, Great Lake, etc)
    Last edited by mendelman; 21 Jun 2013 at 1:35 PM.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

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    Cyburbian dvdneal's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Midori View post
    I ate in a trendy-ish downtown coffee shop this morning and re-awakened the entrepreneur itch. If you could start a small town main street storefront, what would it be?
    I'd open a cigar store, but that's just me. They work real well next to coffee shops. The cigar store guys go next door to buy coffee, and occasionaly some of the coffee people come over for cigars. Plus the bonus of good looking ladies walking around.

    Also, congrats on setting up a thread split!
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    Heard and answered - mendelman
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    Cyburbian WSU MUP Student's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Midori View post
    I ate in a trendy-ish downtown coffee shop this morning and re-awakened the entrepreneur itch. If you could start a small town main street storefront, what would it be?
    If I had the spirit and was opening something in my current town, it would be dive bar. (can you set out to open a dive bar or does it dive to that status over time?)

    I think it would do pretty good since there is nowhere downtown to get a beer that would cost less than about $8.00 and I am sure that there are plenty of folks who are tired of paying those types of prices.
    "Where free unions and collective bargaining are forbidden, freedom is lost." - 1980 Republican presidential candidate Ronald Reagan

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    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Midori View post
    I ate in a trendy-ish downtown coffee shop this morning and re-awakened the entrepreneur itch. If you could start a small town main street storefront, what would it be?
    Handmade chocolates and bakery. I worked PT at a chocolate store a few years ago and it was so nice. Almost everyone is happy when purchasing chocolates!
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    For quite some time I've wanted to open a small fancy beer bar (fancy beer, not fancy bar) but i've never been able to secure enough capital and the market seems to be pretty saturated now. I also really would love to have a small bookstore, but I can't see that making enough to stay in business. In an ideal world, I would do one of those.
    Children in the back seat can cause accidents - and vice versa.

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    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by imaplanner View post
    For quite some time I've wanted to open a small fancy beer bar (fancy beer, not fancy bar) but i've never been able to secure enough capital and the market seems to be pretty saturated now. I also really would love to have a small bookstore, but I can't see that making enough to stay in business. In an ideal world, I would do one of those.
    Hmm, I would've pegged you for a medicinal weed store/cafe.



    Oh, I've also thought of opening a nap store that comes with cats for snuggling. I think they have done this in Japan.
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Midori's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post

    Oh, I've also thought of opening a nap store that comes with cats for snuggling. I think they have done this in Japan.
    I've heard of those! I've thought a coffee shop/kitten rescue would be awesome, but I'm not sure how that would work with health codes...

  9. #9
    Quote Originally posted by mendelman View post
    Used bookstore/new bike/kayak/canoe shop. Preferably, adjacent to a body of water (river, lake, Great Lake, etc)
    My fantasy retirement involves doing in Munising, Michigan. Realistically, I'd probably open a consulting business when it got big enough to move out of my home and I could justify the overhead.
    When did I go from Luke Skywalker to Obi-Wan Kenobi?

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    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    Ice cream shop / running shoe store.

    We would also have cheese and wine tastings... just because.
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  11. #11
    An urban design/historic preservation studio. You pay what you can afford and if you can afford a little bit more, you pay that too, so that the proprietor can offer his extensive experience and service to those who can't afford it at all.

    There will be a warning note at the entrance advising patrons that the proprietor is morally opposed to synthetic siding; inoperable window shutters; sandwich or applied muntins; and, a host of other faux historic design details.
    Je suis Charlie

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    Cyburbian jsk1983's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by WSU MUP Student View post
    If I had the spirit and was opening something in my current town, it would be dive bar. (can you set out to open a dive bar or does it dive to that status over time?)

    I think it would do pretty good since there is nowhere downtown to get a beer that would cost less than about $8.00 and I am sure that there are plenty of folks who are tired of paying those types of prices.
    $8? Is it just marked up really high or do you only have really upscale places serving high end beer?

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    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jsk1983 View post
    $8? Is it just marked up really high or do you only have really upscale places serving high end beer?
    More likely, the rents and average incomes are quite high where he's at. Right, WSU?
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian jsk1983's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by mendelman View post
    More likely, the rents and average incomes are quite high where he's at. Right, WSU?
    I live on the northside of Chicago and $5-6 for craft beer is pretty standard here.

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    Unfrozen Caveman Planner mendelman's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jsk1983 View post
    I live on the northside of Chicago and $5-6 for craft beer is pretty standard here.
    I hear ya. Curious, indeed.
    I'm sorry. Is my bias showing?

    The ends can justify the means.

  16. #16
    Cyburbian Midori's avatar
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    I'm thinking a modern household décor/kitchen and dining stuff store. Something with inventory on the lines of Crate & Barrel or Pottery Barn, but without the furniture (at least, at first). My downtown has a lot of antique (*ahem* junk) stores, and a growing number of art boutiques, but not much in the way of new retail merchandise.

    It sounds so unambitious, but in my area, it might fly. We could never attract an actual Crate & Barrel (nearest one is 4 hours away, simply don't have the demographics to make them look here), but I do think there is a wave of new, younger folks coming in (one of our biggest employers is about to hit an expansion boom and also retire off a wave of oldies). Also, the local mall doesn't offer much competition--it's in the teenage hangout/elderly walking space stage of death.

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    Cyburbian imaplanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    Hmm, I would've pegged you for a medicinal weed store/cafe.

    .
    Maybe cafe, but not for medicinal purposes. I would maybe do something like a combined beer bar/weed cafe with table and board games. I've been to some cool ones like this in Vancouver.

    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post


    Oh, I've also thought of opening a nap store that comes with cats for snuggling. I think they have done this in Japan.
    That would be awesome. Also you could do a combined weed cafe/cat snuggling store. That could be the ticket!
    Children in the back seat can cause accidents - and vice versa.

  18. #18
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I would like to open a craft beer & spirits outdoor tavern, but with a heavy art emphasis. It would serve micro/craft beer exclusively, along with only local spirits (distilling is getting big around here and has an important relationship to beer brewing). It would include periodic classes on how to identify types of beers, how to evaluate them, food pairing, etc. Most importantly, I would have guides for introducing people to craft brews (i.e. "if you like Dos Equis, then maybe you should try this locally brewed Mexican Ale). I would do "tap takeovers" with local breweries to allow them to bring in there small batch reserves or test brews.

    I envision a place similar to this or this, with a lot of outdoor space, outdoor games (washers, bocce, etc.), live music, etc. The kind of place folks 25-55 don't mind just hanging out at for several hours. It would also feature local art and scupture for sale. I would occasionally have art exhibitions also going on.

    My brother-in-law and I have talked about the possibility of opening a bar like what I described.

    My wife would love to open an affordable trendy/crunchy clothing/shoe store. We thought very seriously about making a run at that a few years ago.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

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    Super Moderator kjel's avatar
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    A hole in the wall restaurant serving good food.
    "He defended the cause of the poor and needy, and so all went well. Is that not what it means to know me?" Jeremiah 22:16

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    Cyburbian dandy_warhol's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Hink View post
    Ice cream shop / running shoe store.

    We would also have cheese and wine tastings... just because.
    A vacant video store in our neighborhood was just subdivided into a running store and a fro-yo place. I thought it was a good marketing plan. Pig out on yogurt with toppings and then buy some running gear to convince yourself to go for a run to burn off the indulgence!
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

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    Cyburbian beach_bum's avatar
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    I love working with colors, I would open a color consulting business...helping clueless people pick out paint colors for their houses and interiors. A free color wheel with consult!
    "Never invest in any idea you can't illustrate with a crayon." ~Peter Lynch

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    OH....IO Hink's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by dandy_warhol View post
    A vacant video store in our neighborhood was just subdivided into a running store and a fro-yo place. I thought it was a good marketing plan. Pig out on yogurt with toppings and then buy some running gear to convince yourself to go for a run to burn off the indulgence!
    Exactly. I have always thought they went well together. I love those yogurt places with all the toppings too.... hmmm why don't I just open it already?
    A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools. -Douglas Adams

  23. #23
    Cyburbian SW MI Planner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Whose Yur Planner View post
    My fantasy retirement involves doing in Munising, Michigan. Realistically, I'd probably open a consulting business when it got big enough to move out of my home and I could justify the overhead.
    They recently posted that they are hiring a City Manager ! And Marquette posted for an Assistant City Mgr. If it weren't for the kiddos, I'd probably apply in a heartbeat even though I have no desire to be a manager.

    I don't know that I would want a downtown storefront - the horror , but only because I would want to have landscape and garden items, along iwth things to make outdoor "living rooms" - furniture, fire pits, decor, etc.

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    Zoning Lord Richmond Jake's avatar
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    I'd like to manage a macy*s...

    ...or a bordello.
    Annoyingly insensitive

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    Cyburbian Tide's avatar
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    Used record and CD store - no question
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