Staff at Salmon Arm’s Buckerfield’s are fired up to be back at work and having fun in the process.
The business reopened its gates on March 14, four days after a fire in the upper level of the main building forced its closure. Those who have visited since then might have noticed the store’s signage, advertising “Smokin’ Deals,” and inviting people to “Get fired up for spring.”
“You got to keep laughing. What else can you do,” said Buckerfield’s employee Stephanie Evans, who is thrilled to be back at work so soon after the fire.
“Our CEO came out, Kelvin McCulloch, and made sure, first, that it was safe for us to work. He made sure that we still have our jobs, we’re going to be up and running and let’s go. That was a big main concern, are we going to lose our jobs temporarily? And no, that wasn’t the case.
“So we are thrilled to be back and really happy to be able to support our customers too.”
Currently, Evans and her fellow Buckefield’s crew are operating from tents set up on the business’ property. She says staff can grab stuff for customers from within the store, but the store itself remains closed to the public.
“Customers have been extremely supportive, so happy that they can still feed their animals and get their gardens up and running,” said Evans, adding that a restoration crew has been busy working onsite and there is optimism the building will re-open soon.
One of the store’s employees, however, has yet to return: Cindy the cat. Evans says the store’s in-house feline has taken up accommodation elsewhere.
“She is living with one of the employees and is very, very happy. She has a full bedroom all to herself, so she’s not back yet.
I think she might decide to retire,” laughs Evans.