MANITOUWADGE -- 2 Doors down, a local variety store, is celebrating its 10th year anniversary in August.
Jim Moffat, born in New Brunswick, has lived in Manitouwadge for so long he can pretty well be considered a lifelong resident. He and his wife, Tracy, bought Superior Wine, a gift and ‘Brew on Premise’ wine store, located at the Hallmark Mall in Manitouwadge in 2007, and ran it for five years. When the owner of the nearby Sears Outlet wanted to retire in 2012, Jim decided to expand his empire. The name of the new store, 2 Doors Down, came from the fact that the new store was… well… two doors down from the wine shop.
Originally the Sears outlet generally sold appliances, served as the mail order catalogue depot, and had limited array of office supplies, but the Moffats had a vision to develop the selection of merchandise into a ‘one stop shop’ type of store. They brought in more and more general office and home supplies, crafts and giftware, and offered DVD movie rentals, an important service at the time. They recognized that, although online shopping would be a fierce competitor, people needed the ability to buy certain goods, such as phone cords or ink, immediately.
Over the next couple of years, the businesses struggled through some changes. The wine shop moved to Marathon for a short while, but they eventually closed it, giving Jim the chance to concentrate on his growing enterprises in Manitouwadge, which now included a U-Haul franchise, storage facilities, snow ploughing operations, bread and meat product franchises, and bottled water amongst other things.
When Sears shut its doors, Jim was able to find other sources for the large appliances, and keeps a stock of fridges, stoves, washers, dryers and smaller appliances, such as microwaves and air conditioners. He again expanded his store when the salon next door closed, and now has lots of space for the day-to-day essentials, such as office and craft supplies, greeting cards, snacks, and much, much more. They also sell Municipal dump passes and are an agent for Ontario Northland Bus Line.
Jim and Tracy produce and sell their own souvenirs of Manitouwadge as well. Tracy is a talented photographer, and you can see her images on postcards, mugs, magnets, puzzles and clothing, often bearing the slogan, ‘The Wadge’, which Jim actually had copyrighted in 2014.
2 Doors Down has become an essential part of the community, not only for its wares and services, but for the support Jim and Tracy have given to local events and causes, such as the ATV Jamboree, golf tournaments, and hockey events, to name just a few. Every year Jim raffles off a year’s worth of snow removal service, the proceeds from which goes to the Manitouwadge Cancer Assistance Group.
“We like to give back, because without the support of the people, it’s nothing. You’re not going to make it without the support of the people,” Jim says.
In celebration of the 10th year anniversary, 2 Doors down will be hosting a sale from Aug. 15 to 20, where everything, from paper clips to appliances, will be sold tax free. Listen for his ads on CFNO radio, where you can win a $25 gift card in Al Cresswell’s ‘Guess That Sound’ contest.
So, drop on down and say hi to the staff, buy an ice cream or a lottery ticket and congratulate Jim and Tracy on 10 years of dedication and service to the community. They’re not hard to locate; you’ll find them… 2 Doors Down.