Cut Above Home Finds Success During the Pandemic With Help From Red Wing Port Authority
Thursday, October 29, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a challenging time for many businesses in the Red Wing area and beyond. Red Wing Port Authority saw the effects of the pandemic firsthand and opted to develop a COVID-19 relief fund program that would assist businesses that call Red Wing home. These funds serve to alleviate some of the pressure businesses are experiencing as a result of the pandemic. Cut Above Home, a Red Wing area home store, was able to benefit from COVID-19 relief funds during this season of uncertainty.
Cut Above Home sells carefully curated home decor items that stand out in your home.
“I feel Cut Above Home is a unique source of gift buying and home goods for customers. We have been in the Red Wing community since 2003. Travelers and local customers alike appreciate our gift bagging and the extra touches we do to make their shopping experience special,” says Julie Schrimpf, President of Cut Above Home.
When COVID-19 hit full force, Cut Above Home was classified as a nonessential store and was forced to close for three months.
“Upon reopening in June, it took at least another month before customers were able to start shopping in our Downtown on a regular basis again. As we are a Home Decor Store, our products change frequently. Trying to set up an online presence for selling on short notice is very time consuming and doesn’t merit much response. Our best solution was having the staff go on unemployment until we could reopen,” Schrimpf says of the challenges the business faced.
The remaining staff used the downtime to rearrange the store’s displays in order to accommodate social distancing upon reopening and to make space for more product.
Cut Above Home heard about the COVID-19 relief funds through the Chamber of Commerce. The business was able to apply, and they received funding in a timely manner.
“On April 29th we received $15,000.00 from the Red Wing Port Authority. This was a life saver at a time when our business had no income coming in. We had mortgage payments, vendors to pay and other monthly bills due. I believe without this additional support at the time, we would have had to permanently close our business,” says Schrimpf.
“The first loan I received in April let us take care of mortgage payments and other immediate bills that were pending. I received a second loan from the Red Wing Port Authority in August. We are extremely grateful for those additional funds as well. They are being used to improve our building. We needed roof repairs and awnings. We are also planning on adding new flooring this winter. All of these improvements will keep our building fresh and let customers know we are here to stay,” she continues.
Cut Above Home has felt significant support the last few months, not only from Red Wing Port Authority, but also from the local community.
“Everyone in the Red Wing community has been extremely supportive of our business Downtown. Since reopening, customers have made strides to help support our business with purchases. There is a strong commitment to maintaining our Downtown area, and we are grateful to be part of this community,” Schrimpf says of local support.
As life slowly returns to a more normal pace, businesses are rallying to keep shopping safe for every customer. Local businesses appreciate the efforts the community makes to support them more than ever before.
“As we move forward, it is noticeable that people are more comfortable shopping in smaller communities. We have seen an uptake on people doing day trips to just get out. People are making a conscious effort to support Small Business. We are so grateful to be able to continue running a business in this community. The support from Port Authority has made that possible and even made us a better business for the future,” says Schrimpf.
Cut Above Home continues to provide exceptional services and beautiful homegoods. Make your home space unique to you, and show your support by visiting the store in person at 320 W 3rd Street, Red Wing, MN. To learn more about the COVID-19 resources Red Wing Port Authority provides, click here.