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Volume 1, Issue 1

January 1, 2021

PO Box 223, Willis, VA 24380

Goodbye 2020, Hello New Year!

by Kellean Gale

Floyd County has seen remarkable growth despite the ongoing hardships of 2020. It was a year full of challenges in many ways. Like others, our community required a “think out of the box” approach to developing new ways of maintaining businesses, our school system, and life at home. Iconic businesses in downtown Floyd closed shop this year, including Farmers Supply, Blue Ridge Restaurant, and Little Dress Shop. Th is loss is unfortunate for our community. But among these trials 2020 brought to our county, over ten new businesses began leaping forward to start something new. Chell’s Chop Shop, Buff alo Christian Academy, Jonesburg Pepper Company, Star and Stone, Buff alo Mountain Bakery, Blue Ridge Diner, and others found their niche during a complicated time. Some of us even started a locally written and published community newspaper. One thing is for sure, the citizens in Floyd County have proven to be resourceful, brave, and resilient. Change can be diffi cult for many. New regulations on businesses were among these difficulties. Many companies implemented changes in how they did business.  Curbside pick-up and outdoor dining became the new normal. 

Many companies struggled but adjusted and were creative with their new ideas. Eff orts to support the tourist and small business owners in Floyd provided support and fi nancial help during a challenging and unusual economic and social environment. Th e end of 2020 is welcomed. Many are setting goals and making resolutions to help meet the new challenges of 2021. One thing is almost inevitable, the coming year will bring new ways to accomplish goals because Floyd County citizens possess the ambition to thrive and create innovative solutions to problems. Time and time again, our county has proven to be there for one another and support each other when times are hard. 2021 will be no exception. We are unique and resourceful.

Little Dress Shop

By Staff Writer

Few places in Floyd off er women’s clothing choices that do not brandish logos and slogans of the towns’ tourist establishments and renown for music or do not require jogging shoes and a sweatband to accessorize. Something special has left our community and moved on to retirement and the age of online shopping. An eventuality many establishments may fi nd themselves facing. Th at is another story. Mary Gardner, owner of Little Dress Shop, grew up helping her parents, Douglas and Ruby Gray, in their general store in the 1940s. She later owned and operated a beauty Salon in Floyd. At that time, her mother wanted to sell clothing, and they put a 4-foot clothing rack in the salon, and our iconic Little Dress Shop grew from there. For 45 years, customers from all over the United States have visited and shopped at the

Little Dress Shop. Th ey closed the shop at 204 Floyd Hwy S. on Dec. 21, 2019, and reopened on Jun. 5, 2021, at 111 West Main St. in Floyd to liquidate the remaining inventory. Th ey closed December 19,2020, for the third and fi nal time, as an exclusively brick and mortar establishment. Quite possibly, the shop would have closed sooner if it had not been for the help from her daughter, Elizabeth Reynolds. “Elizabeth has been wonderful to help in so many diff erent ways, and she is a wonderful daughter,” Gardner said. She raised her children and grandchildren in this shop and said, “Th ey learned so much from helping out at the store.” Good news! Th is closing is not the end of the dress shop. Mary and Elizabeth have decided to establish an online shopping entity. Gardner said they plan to open an online formal dress shop selling formal attire. Th e new online shopping site, littledressshopfl oyd. com, will off er wedding gowns, mother and grandmother of the bride dresses and fl ower girls’ dresses. Other off erings will be formal separates and jackets tops. Customers can choose their items online or make an appointment for trying on their selections. Misses and Plus sizes will be available and, of course, jewelry to accessorize. Mary and Elizabeth would like to thank all the customers over the years and people who made the Little Dress Shop so memorable, including Esther

Trail, Geneva Th omas, Ogie Rumburg, Shirley Moran, and others. Gardner sincerely stated, “We would like to thank our customers and appreciate the friendships established throughout the years.” Our community will miss the Little Dress shop but looks forward to their future endeavors. For more information, or to make an appointment call (540) 239-7038).

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

 

The Front Porch …………… 1-3

Around the Table ……… 4-10

The Back Porch ………… 10-18

Church Directory ……… 14-15

From the Kitchen ………… 16

Crossword ………………… 17

Land Transfers …………… 18

Calendar of Events ………… 19

Classifi eds ………………… 19

Down the Road ………… 19-20

Check Out Our January 2020 Edition For Free!

ABOUT THE BEACON:

Come home to The Floyd Beacon, shining light on community and government. Locally owned and operated. Join us on the Front Porch for civic news, Around the Table for community news and the Back Porch for our community involvement section of the paper. Find us FREE at your local stores, online, social media or order your personal subscription at distribution@thefloydbeacon.com to be delivered straight to your home for $40/year. Submit your birth and wedding announcements or classified ads for just $10. Budget-friendly advertising options for anyone to re-strengthen our local economy. For information about advertising, email us at: adsales@thefl oydbeacon.com.

The Floyd Beacon prides itself on community involvement and therefore welcomes citizens to freely submit writings to be used as-needed in the Back Porch section. Submit articles, essays, recipes or family stories for our fellow citizens to enjoy. All corrections, comments or submissions of 300 words or less can be emailed to Kellean Gale at editor@thefloydbeacon.com. Th e Floyd Beacon reserves the right to edit submissions or use as-is and is not responsible for content of submission. Submit your church or civic group events to calendar@thefloydbeacon.com for our community calendar. Th ere is no charge for event submissions.

Welcome home Floyd…welcome home.