On Tuesday, May 12th, Kennett Copy & More experienced a store fire just as they were seeing the “light at the end of the tunnel” in terms of re-opening, co-owner Lori says. Just a few weeks later, they are still in a bit of shock, the community’s response has been overwhelming.
“We have had hundreds of emails, text messages, facebook posts, personal phone calls, cards, letters in the mail,” Lori says. “Prior to the fire I was about to put out a Facebook post that we only needed 5 or 6 more likes to reach 500, and now we are only 3 away from 600. More people have signed up on our website for our email blasts.
We just sent out an email to some of our art supply customers and mentioned that the only way anyone can really help us right now is to continue to order any supplies they need from us… as of today we have gotten probably 10 orders of various supplies…again…truly amazing the support we are getting.”
Their bookkeeper Tanya Herrschaft, who has been friends with co-owner Rhonda for over thirty years, started a GoFundMe just a day after the fire.
“If you’ve ever been to Kennett Copy & More (or even Rubinstein’s back in the day) then you surely heard Rhonda’s hearty laugh and Lori’s quick witted jokes,” Tanya writes. “For more than 36 years Rhonda and Lori have served this community, not only by taking care of our copying needs, but by making us smile and laugh with their lighthearted and fun personalities. After the closure of Rubinstein’s, Rhonda and Lori opened up Kennett Copy & More almost 4 years ago and have poured their heart and soul into their business….gladly helping anyone who walks through the door. Now is the time to help them as they pick up the pieces from this fire. Let’s rally around them to make it a little bit easier and hopefully get them open again – even if in a temporary location. Any donation can make a big difference and is greatly appreciated!”
In less than 48 hours, they reached their goal of $10,000.
“The fire has really saddened us,” Lori says. “But also proved to us that we are a needed source in the community. That will probably be what keeps us strong enough to get back open. It is really a hard thing to face but hopefully things will get easier along the way, and any mistakes we made 4 years ago setting up the first time will help us make things better and easier this time.”
We are seeing over and over again examples of how essential art supply stores are to the fabric of communities everywhere. And reflecting on Lori and Rhonda’s courage in the face of an additional layer of hardship during already practical unbearable times, we take pause. We take stock not of what we have, but of the relationships we’ve built, the people we care about, the communities we serve. We get through this together.
Follow them on Facebook and say hi! Learn more about the store in an Art Dog feature earlier this year. Do you have news for Art Dog? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with us on social media.