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February 17th, 2016 ~ Vol. 85 No. 7
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Entrepreneur? Come to the Pass and invest, we have the space
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
Ezra Black Photo
Empty commercial property on main street Blairmore.
EZRA BLACK
Pass Herald Reporter
A local business owner is organizing a tour of the community’s empty commercial properties to highlight the potential for entrepreneurship in the Pass.

Event organizer Jessica Atkinson says The Crowsnest Pass Empty Building Tour is designed to give folks a look at the community’s choicest empty commercial properties to encourage them buy, rent and spend.

The free, self-guided tours will take place April 16. Participants are being asked to RSVP online.

“I envision people from all over Alberta and B.C. coming and having a look and falling in love with the place,” she says.

Atkinson got the idea to organize an empty building tour from another small town that fell on hard times, went bust and organized a similar event to try and drum up business.

She’s launched the venture on her own but is looking to local realtors, artists and storytellers for help.

She’d like to see each stop on the tour manned by a realtor and a knowledgeable person familiar with the history of the building. She’s also hoping local artists will come out and set up shop at some of the locations.
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“That’s my goal,” she says. “I’ve yet to line those people up. Hopefully they come out of the woodwork because I need them onboard.”

She’s already enlisted Crowsnest Pass Chamber of Commerce president Brian Gallant to help her design a tour map.

She and her husband Steve Atkinson moved to the Pass in 2003 and opened Blairmore’s Stone's Throw Cafe shortly after. They initially rented their space on main street but now own the building.

“We saw potential,” she says. “I don’t see why other people won’t see it too.”

John Pundyk, a realtor for Royal LePage, agrees.

“I think it’s a good idea,” he said. “The more people that are aware of what’s available, the better. Who knows? Maybe someone will see something that will inspire them.”
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February 17th ~ Vol. 85 No. 7
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