Q&A: Candle makers celebrate first year in business in downtown Bay City

Celebrating a one year anniversary is a big event for any business and Coyer Candle Co. is doing just that. With a location in Midland, this is the second location for the company. We asked owner Lisa Coyer about their experience running a business in downtown Bay City.

Q: Congratulations on celebrating one year in Bay City. How has the past year been for you?

A: Thank you! Opening a second location has been a mixture of excitement and a lot of hard work. We have an amazing team that stepped up immensely and made it happen. Having not ever opened another location, it went pretty smoothly. Our customers have been wonderful and very supportive, we can't do it without them.

Q: Imagine you were on a sunny warm beach on a tropical island. Striking up a conversation with a stranger, they ask about your business back home. How would you describe it?

A: We started our business in the kitchen of our house in 2008 out of the need to create a candle that you could smell, that burned longer and didn't leave black soot on our ceilings. It's now a company that employs 10 people (and our dog-boss, Oliver), has two locations, a wholesale program in 30 states, and a wonderful fundraising program that gives back 50 percent of funds raised to the organization. We also purchase from 100+ small batch artisans in Michigan and the USA, helping them to support their dreams too, by selling their items in our shops. Purchasing from companies like Love Your Melon, MudLove, Pura Vida, etc. is important to us too, because we are helping to support a cause.

Q: What led you to opening a storefront in Bay City?

A: We actually looked at the same building about seven years ago, but weren't ready to open a second location. Scott is originally from Bay City and Lisa from Midland, so having locations in both of their hometowns was something they wanted to make happen. It's such a great place, we have loved being here for the past year and look forward to growing with the city.

Q: Do you have any advice for someone considering opening a business here?

A: Opening a business anywhere: Be prepared to work hard. Having many avenues of growth and revenue will keep your doors open, be unique and get creative! Connect with the other business owners, find out what hours work best for them. There are many established stores and businesses in downtown Bay City, not by chance, but by hard work and dedication to making it work.

Q: What's next for Coyer Candle Co.?

A: We've outgrown our manufacturing space, so in the next one to two years we'd love to find a place that we can dedicate just for manufacturing and warehousing. Our store in Midland would then expand into just retail.

Coyer Candle Co. will be celebrating its one year anniversary with an event on Saturday, Feb. 2 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Expect homemade hot chocolate from Bay City Hot Chocolate Hop, a clearance sale, live music, and coupon giveaways.

Coyer Candle Co. is located at 112 3rd St. in downtown Bay City.

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