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5 Businesses Who Said Goodbye to Downtown Acton in 2020

It’s been a tough year for a lot of people and a lot of businesses. The Acton BIA has not been spared. Five downtown businesses closed their doors this year. Squizza’s opened in early February. Store owner, Sherelle Kelly, wanted to offer customers “one of a kind custom work without the custom prices.” She specialized in vinyl making custom t-shirts, mugs, signs and bumper stickers. She also had other one of a kind artists in the store on consignment. As the saying goes, timing is everything. COVID closures hit March 17, and Sherelle had “rent and hydro and no idea how long the closures would last.” She made the difficult decision to close her storefront and pivot to an online format only. She has been able to utilize Dollar Stretcher Daze in Acton as a central pick up location for customers, allowing her to avoid costly shipping for local customers. Sherelle says she “misses being in Acton and getting to see peoples’ reactions to their custom pieces”. If you want to check out what Squizza’s can do for you, you can find her at https://www.facebook.com/Squizzas.inspires. Artsy Phartsy opened at 39 Mill Street in downtown Acton in 2016. It later moved to 122 Mill Street. The store offered art and craft classes for all ages, as well as birthday parties, local food and craft items, coffee, tea and, of course, the ice cream trailer. The store closed seemingly over night at the end of December. Acton UP reached out to owner who did not respond. However, the most recent post on the store’s Instagram account says, “sometimes you have to make a decision that will break your heart but give peace to your soul.” In an earlier comment she says “2020 was full of amazing support from my beautiful community and I am heading off on my new adventure with my heart full of pride and my bucket over flowing thanks to all of you!” The Family Barber also closed on March 17 in the first lock down. Unfortunately, owner Frederick Alan Wipperman, affectionately known as “Al” by his clients, passed away at Groves Memorial Hospital, in Fergus, on December 9. He is remembered by so many as “kind”, “giving”, and “a wonderful friend”. May he rest in peace. The Plant Society Kitchen opened the minds and palates of Acton and surrounding areas. This vegan restaurant opened in 2018. In a video message delivered over Facebook on December 3, Owners Allie and Holly announced the closing of their brick and mortar location. During COVID they limited their hours and closed their dining room. Believing in “quality of life” they made this move to “enable us to focus on our quality, be more mobile, and be more affordable (and) accessible to everyone.” Allie closed the video stating ”This is the closure of one door but also the opening of a universe of possibilities.” Rewriting Your Narrative opened in July 2016 but on December 1, 2020 it moved from Acton to its new location at 5527 Trafalgar Road in Erin. Owner Jessica Ricci told Acton UP the move “wasn’t due to COVID”. It was rather a move to a new location that “better met the needs of clients and offered additional privacy”. Jessica is a psychotherapist that works with a team of 3 other psychotherapists (another Jessica S, Michelle and Himmel) providing individual, group, couples, family and child and teen therapy. They Specialize in “addictions, anxiety, food disorders, stress, work and family conflict and overall well being.” In addition to privacy the new location has allowed the team to expand to two therapy dogs and offers additional parking. Jessica says, “Acton was really good to me and I am super grateful to have been part of that community for so long.” For more information on this business you can go to their website at www.rewritingyournarrative.com So, let’s say “toodle-oo” to 2020. COVID hasn’t gone anywhere and has certainly reminded us of the importance of supporting local. Let’s all try to do our part, wherever, whenever, we can.




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