Crazy Me Gift's takes over former gun store

Donna Southard, the owner of Crazy Me Gifts and Apparel, stands inside her new location on Thursday at 235 E. 20th Street.

Crazy Me Gifts and Apparel has taken over the former site of Second Amendment Firearms, LLC, on East 20th Street.

The boutique gift and apparel shop, owned by Owensboro-native Donna Southard, has been in the new location for two weeks after transitioning from Crazy Me’s first brick and mortar location at Williamsburg Square, Southard said.

Given that crafts have always been a passion, the decision to begin her own shop five years ago was the beginning of a dream that she always hoped would come to fruition, she said.

“I have always dabbled in crafts,” she said. “I had spent several years working as a consultant for companies and taught classes around town that focused on things like scrapbooking. Those endeavors had always worked out well for me and finally, I decided to try it. In the beginning, I ran the business out of our house and we produced vinyl cups and various other decorations and gifts and then demand grew and I knew it was time to expand. We were remodeling our house to facilitate the business and then I found my first retail space, called my husband, stopped remodeling, and I moved in. That is how it happened. I have loved every single minute of it.”

Having been deemed Best Giftshop of the Year in 2018, 2019, and 2020 by the Messenger-Inquirer’s Readers’ Choice Awards, it would seem that her passion has spread through the community and as her shop’s services have grown into embroidery, T-shirt design, laser engraving and widespread personalization of every possible holiday and special event item one could hope to present a loved one.

She said because of the overwhelming support of the community, she felt comfortable enough moving into a bigger location during a time where many small businesses have had to be nimble and look toward changing up their business models to stem the tide of COVID-19. In reality, it was the community that helped see her and her employees through, she said.

“I have to admit moving into the new location is one of the craziest things that we have done,” she said. “We were doing well when COVID hit and luckily having the best customers ever helped us stay successful. When COVID hit, like every other small business owner, we had to get creative. We started curbside service immediately and really became personal shoppers for our customers. ... A lot of our biggest holidays like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Easter all happened during the pandemic and we never shut down. Myself and my staff worked harder than we ever have and the community stood behind us every step of the way. We wanted to make sure that we celebrated everyone’s milestones and it was worth it.”

While Southard has yet to hold a grand opening celebration for the new location at 235 E. 20th St., that has not stopped people from coming in — they’ve even extended their hours, she said.

“A grand opening is in the works,” she said. “We are hoping to do something sometime in October. Even though we are still waiting on our new sign, we are up and running and people are coming in every day. We are excited about the new location and feel blessed and fortunate that the community continues to support us the way they always have.”

Crazy Me Gifts is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information call 270-684-5419 or visit the shop’s Facebook page.

Jacob Mulliken, 270-228-2837, jmulliken@messenger-inquirer.com

Jacob Mulliken, 270-228-2837, jmulliken@messenger-inquirer.com

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