Small village seeing big successes: Copenhagen’s new businesses

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With only one stoplight intersection, one gas station, one school and a population no larger than 800, the village of Copenhagen has still managed to see new businesses flourish.

This week, Hopenhagen Farm hosted a tea party for members of the Tug Hill Red Hatters, who said they enjoyed their day at the new business.

Member Joanna McAvoy, 73, explained the organization seeks a different place to meet each month, and found Hopenhagen Farm to be a real treasure.

“People say there’s nothing in Copenhagen, nothing to do. You just need to get yourself out there and find out what’s going on,” she said as the ladies chatted in the lavender-filled tea room. “The small businesses know what people like and need.”

Owner Mary Rumble calls Hopenhagen Farm her “retirement project.” The lavender farm has paint and sip activities, lavender demonstrations, homemade hop and lavender products, a tea room for party reservations and is planning a Lavender Festival for July 7.

“I just want people to come through our town. It’s a great community; it’s a great village,” Mrs. Rumble said.

Hopenhagen Farm is new to the scene, but even more recent is the Old Mill Ice Cream Shop, which opened the first week in June and has already acquired loyal customers.

Owners Jill and Frank LaBarge say having a business in such a small area is challenging but rewarding.

“I think the business is beneficial to the village and we have been getting a lot of positive feedback from the community. They are really supporting us,” Mr. LaBarge said.

Old Mill is located overlooking the Deer River, on a patch of land the LaBarge family owned for several years before deciding to build the shop.

“We are happy to be growing our business and pleasing people. Everyone likes to enjoy ice cream with a view of the water.”

Busted Grapes winery is yet another fairly new business in the village. Owner Nickey Aubin said the people of Copenhagen appreciate new businesses bringing more attention to their home and she is reminded of that appreciation constantly.

“The community is actually proud. People tell us all the time they love to watch the progress. I think it’s encouraging to see that we can do it, we can make a great business here,” she said.

Many people don’t know much about Copenhagen, but Mayor Scott Alexander hopes the rise in businesses might change that.

“I think we’re going to have more people coming in to see the shops, which will bring in revenue and hopefully put us on the map again,” he said.

Busted Grapes has already made progress and landed a spot on the Thousand Islands Seaway Wine trail.

“I think we bring tourism in, which is helpful to other businesses because the Seaway Trail people visit us and then we encourage them to go to the other local places,” Mrs. Aubin said.

Next time you pass through the tiny village, consider Red Hatter Mrs. McAvoy’s advice: “Don’t think there’s nothing in Copenhagen.”

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