Every now and then we will be giving you a chance to get to know our local, Downtown business owners – your friends and neighbors – who make Downtown such a special place. We’d like to introduce you to Cheryl Lucas, the owner of CRYSTAL Books and Gifts at 439 Main Street.
“When CRYSTAL – Books and Gifts first opened in 1987, I had a home child care center and my husband, Jim, ran the store. We did not have any employees therefore Jim did it all: the ordering, accounting, maintenance, paid all the taxes, etc. As the children started kindergarten, I started working in the shop during the afternoons to give Jim a break. On August 23, 2002 I received a phone call that literally changed my life. My husband was hit on his Vespa and was in the hospital. He died before I could say goodbye to him. While still in the hospital, I had to call Jeff Basinger, a very good friend (He filled in for us when we went to a Gift Show.) and asked him to go to the store to close out, as I had never done that before.
We had a Celebration of his Life at the store a few days after Jim died. To my amazement, the line of people coming into the store went around Summit Canyon and into the parking lot…Wow. Luckily I had a strong retail management and sales background, so I knew how to run a retail store. But I did not even know how to log in to the computers, nor write a check on the system that he used. Fellow Downtown business owners Greg Palmer, Steve Jennings and Scott Miller really helped me with questions that I had as I was thrown into a full-time job as an Independent Retail Shop owner. It was an interesting time but it sure made me appreciate life and not sweat the little stuff.
The store has now been open almost 30 years. I have enjoyed being a part of our wonderful Downtown Grand Junction community as so many of our customers and Downtown Business Owners have become friends. I appreciate all the support from people who choose to shop locally.”