Jeff Green | Jul 09, 2009
Back to HomeFeature Article - July 9, 2009 An unforeseen business step in the right directionBy Julie Druker
Kim Gould owner and operator of The Junction Factory Outlet in Sharbot Lake
Ten years ago Kim Gould of Sharbot Lake started up her clothing store called The Junction Factory Outlet, located in the Retail Centre in Sharbot Lake. A busy mother of four she remembers being outraged at the high cost of children’s clothing.
She ran and still runs her discount/new clothing business for children and adults. She offers bargains on popular name brand swimwear like Nyguard and Baltex, and Tabi sweaters are usually priced at a third of the regular retail prices. She ran the original clothing business for 6 years in its first location until she moved it 4 years ago this past April to where it now is.
Kim recalled, “One day out of nowhere my husband came up to me and said, ’Kim, I have something to tell you. I just put an offer in on the Loves to Cook building.'”
With no plans then to become a restaurateur, eventually Kim moved her clothing business into the old restaurant building, opened a gift shop and ran a chip truck out front. Kim recalled, “One summer was enough for me in that truck.“ So she purchased all of the kitchen equipment necessary to start up her own version of a 1950s/1960s style diner, which now takes up two-thirds of the building and also brings in two-thirds of her sales.
A friend, Cheryl Matson, helped her decorate the interior, which feels diner-like, painted in red and pale greens with matching tables and chairs. Elvis, Marilyn and Coke memorabilia decorate the walls and a jukebox still tops her list of must haves.
The menu is diverse and Kim says that her most popular items are their 5-ounce fresh burgers along with their fries, cut fresh everyday and cooked in canola oil. The menu is always being improved, and new this year a wide variety of salads and wraps have been added. Kim said, “I want people to know that it’s not just burgers and fries. You can come here and also have something healthier too.”
For ice cream lovers a huge self serve unit offers customers up to 30 flavours of cones, sundaes and parfaits. Kim is not too shy to boast, “We also have the best milkshakes.”
Her staff has increased in the summer to nine including herself, whom she refers to as “ the general runner arounder”. She travels far and wide and often to purchase supplies while managing and running the two operations.
The part of the job she enjoys most is meeting and speaking with locals and tourists from all over Ontario and the world. "I have customers who will make a day trip from Ottawa and for a lot of travelers it is their regular pit stop."
Kim was happy recently to spend some time speaking to a group of tourists from England learning about their families and lives.
Open all winter and 7 days a week in the summer from 10am -6pm, The Junction Factory Outlet is located at 24601 Hwy 7 at Hwy 38, just beside the liquor store.
Anyone who knows of a jukebox for sale can contact Kim at 613-279-3939.
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