GREENDALE — COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on the global economy overall, but some businesses have not only survived the pandemic. They have thrived because of it. That’s playing out in Greendale, where people are flocking to a new specialty shop.
The Nest, a 'bird boutique' store, opened just months into the pandemic and its growth mirrors that of an exploding interest in bird watching.
“Actually, it was the perfect time to open this kind of business,” owner Anne Schimmel admitted. “So many people were looking out their windows and saying, ‘what kind of bird is that?’”
Schimmel has the answer to that question, and everything bird watchers need to attract more visitors at her downtown shop. If she doesn’t know the answer to a question, a shop patron just might.
“It’s a really great mix,” Schimmel described. “The veterans can kind of meet with the newbies and say, ‘I like this and this really works great,’ you know.”
Dozens of people turned out earlier this month for the first “Feathered Facts Seminar” at a Greendale community hall called the Hose Tower.
“Birding, in terms of bird watching, bird feeding, putting up bird houses has always been incredibly popular,” said the featured speaker, wildlife expert Scott Craven. “In the last couple years, everything outdoors from canoeing and hiking and camping and hunting, what not, has taken a boost.”
Craven also pointed out, it’s easy to start birding, and just as easy to get hooked.
“You don’t have to know much. You get basic advice on buying a feeder or perhaps making one. That’s the other thing. You can make these things out of recycled pop bottles and a few sunflower seeds and you’re off and running.”
If you’re in the market for high rent bird housing, Schimmel has that covered at her shop as well. “I have books. I have feeders. I have everything you need.”
The next “Feathered Facts Seminar” is coming up on October 2. The events are free, though you do need to register ahead of time. For more information https://www.nestofbirds.com/