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New businesses open downtown
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Creations by Carolyn & Friends opened Feb. 22 in a cozy storefront adjacent to the Kangaroo Express gas station on Highway 53.

This is an answer to my prayers, owner Carolyn Hayes said. It has been my dream to have a place where I can sell the things I make.

Hayes is a multi-talented, self-taught artist who has been plying her craft since 1992. Her cache of creations includes custom-designed, polymer clay jewelry, paintings, handbags, and specialty custom-sewn pieces.

I have been doing crafts and sewing since I was a child, and as an adult, I learned painting and jewelry-making by watching and reading, she said.

Hayes chose downtown Dawsonville for her business because of its close proximity to her home.

Ive lived in Dawson County since 1992, but my grandpa was born here, and I probably have a lot of relatives I dont even know I have, she said. Her grandfather was Marian C. Roland.

I like everything about the area, the people, the wide open spaces, farms, and the waterfalls.

Plus, she said, the rent is affordable.

Hayes friends also bring in their creations to the store. Coleen Slayton makes one-of-a-kind, reuseable Easter baskets from large coffee cans.

Located less than one mile from Creations by Carolyn & Friends are the homes of three more new businesses: City Pawn, Turner & Pooch Pet Grooming, and Lelos Bows. All are located adjacent to Big Ds BBQ and Exxon at 6566 Hwy. 53 East.

City Pawn owner Josh Thorton has spent 11 years in the retail and wholesale business. His wife, Cody, is a 2001 Dawson County High School graduate.

When we got married, we lived in Gainesville, but decided to move back to Dawsonville to open the business, Thorton said. I used to have the power commute, and that got old really fast. I think this is a good time to open a business in Dawsonville.

City Pawn opened in February. The stores biggest sellers are ammunition, DVDs, video games and tools.

This is a unique, small, family business, Thornton said. We are here to help people. Well work with everybody. And we have fast, friendly service. Im really excited about being close to home. Ive already run into several people I know. Dawsonville is a great small town.

The owners of Turner & Pooch Pet Grooming think so, too.

For co-owners Samantha Turner, her brother Michael and sister-in-law Jami, opening the store is a dream come true.

Ive been a vet tech for 15 years, Samantha said. And Im all about the health and welfare of the animals.

The store officially opened yesterday.

Samantha said she has lived in Dawsonville eight years.

The unique store name came from friends on Facebook.

We knew we wanted our name somewhere in there and someone suggested Turner and Hooch, Samantha said. Then, I thought Turner and Pooch and several people liked it. My dad was very excited too.

Were a little country grooming salon and we do haircuts and baths to make the dogs look and feel better.

Adjacent to Turner & Pooch is Lelos Bow shop. Owner Leland Thurmond said he is preparing the store for opening but did not specify a date.

An existing business in downtown Dawsonville is set to expand.

Colleen Simrell, owner of Dawsonville Antiques on the circle, has leased the former Scotty Dog Cafe located next door.

Sales have been great in the Dawsonville area, Simrell said. We are expanding and looking for new dealers.

Dawsonville Antiques is located at 23 Hwy. 9 North.

I moved to the area and thought the old gas station was quaint, she said. And something needs to happen in this downtown.

Simrell will celebrate her businesss one-year anniversaryMarch 15.

Were going to have an anniversary celebration and a grand opening toward the end of March, she said.