HARRISBURG, S.D. (KELO) — On Thursday night, we introduced you to the woman behind Emer-GenZ, a Harrisburg-based business offering homemade meals to go. We’re taking a closer look at the community of women entrepreneurs Pam Harris has built around her in the last year.
Right now, four businesses call the 518 Marketplace home. That may seem like a lot, but in a few months there will be even more.
“So I just basically put the word out there and within a week and a half I had business partners,” said Owner of Emer-GenZ Eats and Treats, Pam Harris.
Pam Harris needed a space for her growing business, Emer-GenZ. She found the space on North Cliff Avenue, but didn’t need all the room. So, she found other entrepreneurs looking for a fresh start.
“We all just sort of jumped in. We’re all first time business owners, but we help each other. We handle each other’s sales. We do promotions together,” said Harris.
“I can’t imagine having done this without it because the support from not only Pam, but the other business owners, it helps you keep going when things are hard. Or when you’re not sure what you’re doing. When you have questions you’ve got the support of other businesses, and we’re all in it together,” said Shanon Abrahamson, owner of Gravel Road Blend.
This fall, there will be seven different businesses operating out of this large room. Visitors will find everything from home decor, floral arrangements, jewelry, a mature women’s boutique, and a coffee shop.
That coffee shop, Gravel Road Blend, is owned by Harris’s business partner, Shanon Abrahamson.
“I’ve incorporated Keto into it. It’s just so many people are looking for that easy just come and grab it and go. So just making that diet a little easier for people,” said Abrahamson.
These women say without the support of each other, there’s no way they could have taken the leap of faith to start a new adventure.
“Just help. We help each other with everything from sales. We kind of work as employees for each other. It’s huge, I think, in helping a small business get off the ground and become successful,” said Abrahamson.
“We have become friends, as well as business associates,” said Harris.
Harris says they will have an open house to introduce all the new shops in the Marketplace, once they open in a few months. She says they should be ready for the holiday shopping season.