The closure of Jackson Mobile Home Park on May 1 means that people have been scrambling to find alternative spots for their homes or businesses, other housing arrangements, or are even considering moving out-of-state. This week we share the experiences of several displaced home and business owners of Jackson Mobile Home Park.
If you see an especially well-groomed canine walking down the street one day, there’s a chance Cheryl Nugent did his “do.” The 53-year-old Nugent says pet grooming is her passion, and she ran a pet grooming business out of the park for several yeras. Following news of the closure, things changed, including her day job.
“I’ve been working with animals since 1984 professionally and it’s the love of my life, and having to set that aside and get office work has been kind of heartbreaking actually.”
Kodiak is known for its scenic views, and Jackson’s is famous for having a prime spot to see the ocean and islands. Nugent says she named her shop Groom with a View for that very reason, and clients from all over the road system, and even villages, appreciated that view.
“It was just fabulous. You could watch the ferry go by, all the boats, and whales, sea otters, sea lions, and sometimes, there would be even spray that would hit the windows. No matter what the weather was, it was amazing.”
She says she spent time as a veterinary assistant and worked as a pet groomer at veterinary clinics in Minnesota before opening her business in Kodiak in 2008.
“And I rented a place in town. I took over Joanie’s Grooming on Mill Bay Road, and then when they decided to close the grooming portion of their business, because it’s Kodiak services, they do machine type stuff. And that’s when this location become available to me.”
Since Nugent does not own the trailer, she’s not responsible for disposing of it, but without a space for her business, she’s in flux. She describes the challenge of renting commercial space in Kodiak and says she looked at many different locations.
“A lot of office or space, commercial space, that would have water and where animals could be allowed to come and go, is pretty spendy. And a small office for instance, if I were to rent a small barber shop style office, I would have to still have my equipment installed, like a tub, and different things like that.”
She says many small spaces are roughly $1,000 a month outside of water, power, and sewer, and that wouldn’t be feasible for her as the sole proprietor.
She says she’s doing office work now, but she’s continuing her passion.
“I will be grooming on the side for now until I get something set up more permanent, but I’ve been mobilized, I do different things for my clients that are very special, because they are very special to me. They’re like members of my family ‘cause you get to know them from when their puppies are little and throughout the life of their dogs, you get to know them, and the dog actually become like one of my dogs.”
So, some of the dogs you see strolling along the streets may still have gotten their wash and cut from Cheryl Nugent. They just didn’t get to enjoy the view from the bluff when they got groomed.