SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska

Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

Proposed Distillery at The Old Firehouse

By Shauna Lee

November 09, 2018
Friday PM

Finally, after a long period of stagnation, I’ve seen the spark of change here in Ketchikan and it’s made me feel quite optimistic about our future. Businesses like Nibliks, SoHo Coho, Chinook and Company and Ketchikan Dry Goods have brought new life into the downtown core with their updated design aesthetic and merchandise that encourages our local dollars to stay local. Venues like the New York Café, the Bawden Street Brewery and the Fish House have brought us new menu offerings and the opportunity to eat, drink and be merry right here in our hometown. It’s an exciting time for the First City and I feel like we are on the precipice of a new era where we leave old outdated ideas behind and embrace what our future could be. So how do we keep this momentum going?

As a business person I have learned over the years that I am more successful when I reach out to other local businesses and organizations. Working with my fellow colleagues rather than against them, has been a recipe for success. I want to help other companies become successful because when their boat rises, I get to ride the same high tide. That is why I want to encourage the City of Ketchikan to support the proposed distillery at the old Ketchikan Fire Department location.

The old firehouse is currently defunct (some say haunted!), in disrepair and needs some serious TLC. That takes money and money comes from business and a new, exciting business is what they are offering. It’s a concept that has the potential to provide partnership to many organizations, including my own, and to create an exciting destination area for tourists, pulling them up and away from the congested docks. It would be equally attractive to locals, creating a fun location to start or end an evening out. It would bring more foot traffic to neighboring venues, more opportunities to keep our dollars local and the bottom line, more tax revenue to support our town. Give them the keys, let them do the work that needs to be done to make it a viable enterprise and wait for the money to flow into the city coffers. If they have the financial ability and the willingness to fix that place up, let them! Let them breathe new life into this amazing building that has been of great service to our community. It deserves to be given a second chance and unfortunately, the cost of repair is probably not one the city can afford with so many other priorities on the table. These entrepreneurs deserve a shot because, simply put, we need more businesses to create more revenue, so we can all ride the high tide towards success.

Shauna Lee
Ketchikan, Alaska



Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received November 08, 2018 - Published November 09, 2018

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