TROUP COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) – Two businesses in Troup County took off because of the COVID-19 pandemic despite the difficult circumstances. Burrow Warehouse and Modern Floral Preservation began business in the midst of the pandemic and have continued thriving this year.
Owners of Burrow Warehouse, Kesha and Michael Coniglio, bought their event venue the last day of 2019 before things took a sharp turn in early 2020. The couple was in the process of remodeling the building when many businesses shut down due to COVID-19.
“All the brides, all nonprofits that usually have events to help generate revenue for the year had stopped. All city events for Christmas parties, things like that, everything just came to a halt. That’s when we started to kind of panic a little bit. We started to try to reach out to see if there was any help and there was none, for us,” said Kesha Coniglio, Co-owner of Burrow Warehouse.
At the time, the event venue did not qualify for government help since it did not have pay stubs from the previous year.
The couple began to show their venue before the renovations were completed based on vision boards and ideas. They booked their first two weddings in their venue for July 2020. Since then, they have seen a slow increase in bookings and now have many weddings booked for this fall.
“These two different couples came in and I had to basically walk them through, show them a mood board and a vision board of what we were doing to the building. We were in full renovations, I mean there were walls being blown out and being added. It was so exciting that they could see our vision immediately, just with pictures and a mood board and stuff and that they trusted us for the biggest day of their lives. We were so excited for July,” said Kesha Coniglio.
The Coniglio’s thoroughly enjoy seeing the events come together. Michael Coniglio, co-owner of Burrow Warehouse, maintains the venue and helps prepares it for the events.
“Seeing all that work we’ve put into it and seeing all the work that the wedding party has put into it and seeing it all come together that day, for that moment. We’re both present at those weddings or events so just seeing it all come together and seeing how special that moment is for everybody. Of course, it’s a joyous time so everyone’s laughing, drinking, just having a great time and that’s what I like about it,” said Michael Coniglio.
The Coniglio’s did receive financial help from the city of West Point. The city has plans set up to help entrepreneurs receive help with things like lower interest rates and lower monthly payments.
Also in Troup County, a former makeup artist found a new passion due to the COVID-19 pandemic, floral preservation. Nancy Dunson, was a makeup artist for about 12 years when the pandemic stopped all her business. She then founded her current company, “Modern Floral Preservation”.
Dunson was nervous to hear that her makeup business would be slowing down at the start of the pandemic.
“Panic, cause you couldn’t have people in your homes and you couldn’t have people in your businesses. I had actually quit my full time desk job about 8 months before the pandemic hit because I was going to do makeup full time,” said Dunson.
Dunson had been researching the idea of floral preservation for months when a friend approached her about preserving flowers from her mothers memorial. She now loves the concept of her new business and is taking a step back from makeup.
“I love it, there’s so much you can do. It’s beautiful,” said Dunson.
Dunson said COVID-19 taught her to expand outside of her norms and acquire a new skill she did not have before.
“You just have to be patient and not get so caught up in, ‘this is the only thing I can do’, because there are so many other things that you can do that will make you happy,” said Dunson.