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Island Life in Santa Cruz

April 29, 2010

How did a depressing empty storefront, a reminder of our tanked economy turn into a vibrant mecca of color, art and beauty?  An amazing woman named Barb Bacon moved in with her business Island Home & Garden.  Last Saturday marked her grand opening in the new location on 17th Ave, just a short half block away from our house.  The preparations during the week leading up to the event excited the neighborhood especially when the sad, muddy front expanse became a landscaped jewel.  

Inside the store

I had been in Barb’s store a couple of weeks ago to find the right present for Tim to mark our anniversary which is also his birthday.  It was my first visit, although I already wear a lovely necklace that Tim bought at the previous location and brought out to me in Idaho last summer.  The store is chock full of tropical flowers, gorgeous dishes, Hawaiian art and so many other things that make you feel happy and relaxed by just being around them.  Barb showed me a handmade paddle  that I knew right off was the perfect gift for my outrigger husband.  

The grand opening was a marvelous event filled with music, dance, food and literally hundreds of great people.  The highlight was the Te Hau Nui Dance Company who performed a wide variety of Polynesian dances.  Music poured from the premises and could be heard down the block.  The best part of all though, was to see this woman who had an idea, who through hard work and dedication, turned her notion it into a thriving shop that defies the notion that small business is dead.  Island Home & Garden’s  grand opening was a true community event and a testimony to the living beat of beach life here in Santa Cruz. 

Tim and Barb



busy Barb

Barb with her son Carl

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