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Footwear from Shoe Lala

Sydney Blackmore says it’s gotta be the shoes.

If the shoe fits, buy it
Someone wise once said, “You can never have too many pairs of shoes…”
Using a Corner Brook-Montreal-Italian connection, two women are bringing high quality footwear to the city and selling it for cheap.

Shoe LaLa is a footwear stand running out of the Avalon Mall Flea Market on Sunday evenings, operated by business partners and friends Kristen Sweetland and Miriam Macleod. It all kicked off when Sweetland noticed the high quality, high fashion, low priced shoes offered at Bargain Village, a business in her hometown of Corner Brook. Sweetland played gumshoe and discovered the proprietor of the store received their stock from Browns Shoes, the Montreal-based shoe mecca that’s been satisfying fancy footwear lovers for more than 70 years. Sweetland and Macleod use this Corner Brook connection to feature Browns Italian-made factory clearance shoes at their Shoe LaLa booth in the mall.

“A lot of them have never been worn, a brand new shoe,” says Sweetland. “And others are store samples—slightly worn but still perfectly good shoes that have been broken in for you.”

The Shoe LaLa duo first became sole mates after a happy business encounter. Sweetland, a full-time interior designer with her business Sweetland Designs, redecorated Macleod’s house and the two struck up a friendship.

Macleod, a PEI-er with a history as a business owner in an international forum, is pleased with Shoe LaLa’s working pace.

“This is what we have space for in our lives right now,” she says. “We’ve only been doing it a few hours every week and it’s been fantastic. It’s a good venue, relaxed. These are shoes with a history, so it fits with the flea market.”

Shoe LaLa seems a good fit for the pair, as both women never underestimate the power of a good shoe. Says Sweetland, “When we can bring the right pair of shoes to the right feet, it’s a lot of fun. They are sort of one-of-a-kind, so when you find someone who loves the shoe and it’s the right size, it’s just that perfect moment.”

Shoe LaLa runs each Sunday at the Avalon Mall from 5:30 – 9:00PM. Starting this Sunday, the booth will display boots—for the new Fall season. Look them up on Facebook.

Brave brew world
Without looking at a weather report, I already know a new Storm system is set to hit the city in just a few weeks. Mike & Kristi McBride, the owners of Storm Brewing Ltd, are anticipating new equipment to add to their micro brewery that will make for faster, more efficient bottling.

Storm Brewing is popular for their unique brands of ale—Raspberry Wheat Ale, Island Gold Ale and Irish Newfoundland Red Ale—their use of the ‘stubby’ beer bottle, and the success of their Zero Emissions First Initiative (ZERI) project (for more on that, visit their website at stormbrewing.ca).

The demand to keep up with the sales in local shops has been challenging for the Storm crew.

“We are flat out trying to keep up with demand for our beer this summer,” says Mike McBride. “We’re looking forward to getting our new bottling line up and running, since I’m growing weary of getting yelled at for stock shortages.”

The new bottling line-up will be in effect in September, and fully operational by October.
So what does this mean for the micro brewery?

“This new equipment will package in one day what it now takes us a week or longer to do,” he says. “This is a substantial investment for our small company as we have not and will not rely on government funding for start-up and growth like our local competition.”

The McBrides also look to this new equipment as an opportunity to quench their customer’s thirst for their products.

“We look forward to providing our present customers with better service, and expanding our business so that others can try our locally crafted brewed ales.”

Etomized
Club Etomik is no longer opened to the dance hungry, neon-light-loving habitués of George Street. The club space has recently been taken over by the owners of The Sundance Bar & Grill, Club One, the Beer Market, and the addition of Etomik to this line-up means a hefty chunk of George will now be under the same management.

Before the space’s relaunch, it’s undergoing some renovations. A Sundance rep would not confirm what the new Etomik look will be, but did say that it won’t be the same dance bar that many of us have grown to love (or not). No date for its re-opening has been released, so keep checking up on its status on George.

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