Historic Downtown Ringgold held ribbon cuttings for two businesses opening last weekend "Above the Ridge" and "Uniktings!." Family, friends, and supporters of downtown came to welcome the two new retail stores to the historic Nashville Street shopping area. The two ribbon cuttings were held in conjunction with each other on Saturday, to celebrate the grand opening of "Above the Ridge" and the opening of "Uniktings!" brand new location.
Owners, Brandon and Nina Shirey welcomed new visitors into their store for the afternoon as curious shoppers browsed the wide selection of outdoor sporting goods. "We're an outdoor specialty shop... we sell hard goods for outdoor recreation such as hiking, camping, rock climbing, biking, back-packing, running and a couple other brands that aren't necessarily related to outdoor recreation but are in that industry," said Mr. Shirey. "We've seen so many people in Ringgold out jogging or running with their dogs that we included a lot of pet friendly equipment as well." This is the Shireys' first brick-and-mortar store and their inspiration comes from their own family experiences in the great outdoors. "You can't go to a big retailer and get the same kind of advice or suggestions on what works and what doesn't out on the trail or on the water, because [large retailers] can't give you the same attention that we do in our store," said Mr. Shirey.
"Uniktings!" a familiar retailer in downtown Ringgold, also had a grand re-opening at a new location just two doors down from "Above the Ridge" on Nashville Street. Owner and operator Cindie Robinson opened her former location in May of 2007 and after expanding the variety of retail offerings, she has now expanded into a newly renovated space. "We've redone our floors and lighting and the entire way the merchandise is displayed and it really looks great," said Ms. Robinson. "Uniktings!" offers various customizable print, embroidery and other accessories to create personalized gifts and apparel. Ms. Robinson has also been an active member of the Ringgold Downtown Partners, Ringgold's merchant association.
"Having a great, diverse mix of retail shops in downtown is vital to having a healthy local economy in Ringgold," said Joseph Brellenthin, director of Downtown Development. "We have a lot of great projects going on and it's really a lot of activity for a small town, but these are the kinds of investments that can make a town a real destination for families to visit."
The City of Ringgold has recently undertaken projects to improve pedestrian access and walkability along the historic Nashville Street shopping areas and is working to renovate and redesign large portions of the recreation areas off Emberson Drive. Renovated facilities, new fields, playgrounds, and a canoe launch are planned to increase the time and activity around downtown for residents and visitors.
"We have representatives from our major boards and the council down here to show people that the City is taking a very active role in promoting and sustaining a great quality of life in downtown Ringgold," said Mr. Brellenthin.
Above the Ridge is at 7767 Nashville Street in Ringgold, and is open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, call 706 935-2458.
Uniktings! is at 7749 Nashville Street in Ringgold, and is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information call 706 937-5252.