‘You Guys Should Buy That Store’: Couple Takes Over Decades-Old Grain Business In Chester

Couple Janessa Purney and Burleigh Sunflower bought Erskine’s Grain & Garden in Chester. They said they’ve succeeded in maintaining the business in part because of people staying home more during the pandemic and having time for backyard projects. (Henry Epp/VPR)

When the owners of a generations-old family business in Chester, Vermont announced they were shutting down last year, a local couple took a leap and decided to buy the store. Their story is the next in our series about businesses that have started or substantially changed during the pandemic.

At the back of the wood-paneled storefront inside Erskine’s Grain & Garden, next to a wall of maple sugaring supplies, hundreds of baby chicks are chirping from inside a series of wooden crates.

The chicks are part of an annual tradition at Erskine’s called “Chick Days.” For decades, Erskine’s has sold grain, hardware and other supplies to local farmers and gardeners.

Read the rest of the story at VPR’s website.