Thursday, November 26, 2009

Light Up Blue Ridge!

Gatewood Hall Gracious Home has been proud to be a sponsor of Light Up Blue Ridge as long as we have been in business. It is one of our favorite events, and one that you will not want to miss! You can't help but get into the wonderful holiday spirit, while strolling our historic downtown area. This year promises to be even better than last year and the volunteer committee has some wonderful activities planned.

The fun starts around 11:00 AM Saturday, November 28th, and continues throughout the day until 9:00 PM. Mr. & Mrs. Claus are expected to arrive on the train at 12:30 PM, there will be live music, face painting, free photos with Santa, a parade at 5:30 PM and the lighting of the great tree ceremony at 6:45. Don't forget that all of your favorite stores (like GH!!) will stay open late and many will be serving refreshments.

Please make it a tradition and come downtown for all of the fun. For more information regarding Light Up Blue Ridge please visit the website

Happy Thanksgiving

We wish you a very happy Thanksgiving! Shawn and I are thankful for you our loyal customers, friends and always we sincerely thank you for supporting us! And we couldn't miss this opportunity to say thank you to our GH gals Kelli and Rebecca for all of their hard work!
Stop in tomorrow for some great "black friday" savings throughout our store! (PS..You will also probably hear about some exciting news that is breaking for GH!! Stay tuned for details!!)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It's begining to look a lot like Christmas!

It's that time again. The most wonderful time of the year! Christmas has arrived at Gatewood Hall Gracious home and we can't wait for you to see our new holiday items.

We have turned the bedroom into a Winter Wonderland, with neutrals, soft creams, whites and tans accented with silver, crystal and mercury glass. You will love Kelli's latest display bed! Be sure and check out our peace sign ornaments encrusted with crystals!

In the living and dining area we went with traditional holiday reds and greens. (Sorry our photos didn't turn our so you will just have to come in and see us!!)
Happy holidays! See you this weekend!
Corky, Shawn, Kelli and Rebecca

Thursday, November 19, 2009

We Appreciate You! Thank You for Supporting Us!

The 3/50 Project is one that we have supported for awhile now. Many of you have heard about it and discussed it with Shawn and I. For those of you who haven't please take a few minutes to read the press release below about the project's founder Cinda Baxter. One of my best friends Stan, in North Carolina sent this to me and suggested that I share it with you (by the way he is is not a retailer just a supporter of small businesses.)
We thought it was an appropriate time to say THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH FOR SUPPORTING US! If we don't say it enough we really appreciate your business. We know that you could make your purchases at some large chain store or "back home" where some of you maintain a primary residence but instead, you wait and shop with us in downtown Blue Ridge and for that we THANK YOU! We are so passionate about what we do and we realize that without you we wouldn't have the opportunity to do it. We are excited about our future and our goal is to continue to bring you wonderful and unusual new merchandise while providing the best service possible...All while having great fun with you- our customers, our friends! Thanks for helping us to live our dream.

Former Retailer Provides Her Own Economic Stimulus Plan for Main Street

The 3/50 Project unites small business and consumers in stabilizing their local economy Minneapolis, MN, March 19, 2009 — Having been an independent stationery store owner for fourteen years, Cinda Baxter understood the pain felt by retailers when the economy sank and consumers held back. What began as an economic downturn in the autumn had become a psychological tsunami by March 1st.

What the country needed, in her opinion, was a meeting of the minds between two groups that held valuable stakes in the game—small business owners and members of their communities. Enter The 3/50 Project. With a tag line “Save your local economy three stores at a time,” the Project’s goal is to promote shopping in locally owned businesses while thanking customers for the positive impact that decision has on a local economy.

“We’re constantly inundated with doom and gloom,” says Baxter, now a retail consultant and professional speaker. “The system is broken, the banks are frozen, the economy is bleeding. That’s all we hear. The images painted by the media are ghastly and devoid of hope. What we need—what we crave—as a nation is to pinpoint areas where positive change can occur, then feel good about having promoted them.”

By early March, she’d decided enough was enough, and that it was time to give retailers ammunition to fight back with. Rather than get tangled in complex messaging and deployment, Baxter combined a straightforward theme, a free flyer, and her blog as the mechanism to launch The 3/50 Project.

“We ask consumers to think about which three stores they’d miss if they disappeared, then remind them to return there,” explains Baxter. “Shoppers have become so rooted in thinking about the essentials that they’ve forgotten about the little gift store on the corner whose owner remembers their name.”

“Fifty comes from the idea that if even half the employed population spent a mere $50 per month in locally owned retail stores, those purchases would generate more than $42.6 billion in revenue,” she continues. “That’s a huge impact for a relatively small investment.” Which leads to a third number on the flyer, sixty-eight—the dollar amount that remains in a community’s economy for every $100 spent in locally owned stores. By contrast, only $43 per one hundred remains local when spent in national chains; little or no revenue results from online purchases.

“In essence, the whole thing boils down to Pick 3, spend 50, save the economy. It’s really that simple.”

Since ease of use was key to store owners jumping on board, Baxter designed a free flyer for participants to download, print on any color printer, then hand to consumers with their purchases. “The idea is to look customers in the eye, put this right in their hands, and say ╩╗thank you for shopping in a locally owned store╩╝ rather than just pop these in the bottom of a bag and hope someone sees them.”

Within 24 hours of providing the link on her blog, things began to light up. Retailers were sharing the flyer with other businesses. Property managers were spreading the news to tenants. Thank you notes were arriving via email every hour. Trade publications and blogs were asking about guest posts and columns promoting the plan, and a movie theater requested a copy large enough to display on their screens for waiting audiences to view. “The best part about 3/50 is that it’s so down to earth, so straightforward, so accessible,” reflects the enthusiastic champion of independent retailers. “This is a labor of love that store owners and customers can share.”

Given the level of interest, a dedicated website has been established to promote the movement, link to the free flyer, and list participating retailers and other supporters. It can be found at

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thank You Fannin Chamber Guests!

Thank you so much to all of the Fannin County Chamber members who attended our business after hours tonight. We are so thrilled at the huge turnout (we were told by a few folks that this was one of the largest turn-outs this year!!). It was our pleasure to be the host. And we met some of the nicest new members.
Special thanks to Sarah Auman owner of the most fabulous "Out of the Blue" shop for helping us out with the wine tasting! As always Sarah helps to choose the best wines! (Go see her or click on the link under friends and neighbors). I also want to thank Kathy and Linda from L&L Beanery and Cafe who catered our event. As always the food was wonderful, I especially loved the bacon wrapped shrimp as well as the hummus & feta bruschetta! (oh who am I kidding I loved it all and the desserts were awesome too!) Some more special thanks to Kelli and Rebecca our GH Gals who worked diligently to help us get ready for our gathering. They had to make all of the "GH Swag Bags" that we gave to our guests as well as our gift baskets for the door prize drawings. Speaking of...congrats to all of our winners especially Kitty a loyal GH fan who won the fifty dollar GH Gift certificate prize! Enjoy your goodies everyone.
Last but not least a HUGE THANK YOU to Jan Hackett and the rest of the Fannin County Chamber team for letting us host this fun event. We appreciate your tireless efforts and all of the hard work you do to promote our beloved county and town!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Blue Ridge Brewery Open

Just in case you haven't heard? There is a new restaurant in town, Blue Ridge Brewery is now open! Unfortunately, I haven't had the opportunity to enjoy a meal there but Shawn has and he raved about it. One of our favorite chefs, Rick Tullis brings his expertise and I hear he has put together a fantastic menu. BRB is open for lunch and they offer soups, sausages, hot sandwiches, salads and small plates. I hear the house burger is delicious! In the evening dinner at the brewery offers seasonal soups and salads, as well as steaks, prosciutto wrapped trout, wiener schnitzel, roasted chicken, pan seared duck breast, and even some vegetarian dishes. Top off your great meal with an assortment of American and European desserts.

I was working in the store this weekend and several of our friends and customers had been to BRB and every single one of them said really, really great things! I just can't wait to go! The enthusiasm was unbelievable. Oh, and word has it that the owner Pat has selected some great and exclusive beers if you are so inclined! (Isn't that exciting? Right here in Blue Ridge, Georgia)

Blue Ridge Brewery is located at 187 Depot Street (former home of Blue Christmas). They are closed on Sunday and Monday. I hear it is best to make reservations so give them a call at 706-632-6611 and be sure to tell them that we sent you!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Fall Sale Ya'll!!

Please come by and see us today through November 14th, 2009 we will be having a sale on most of our fall merchandise! Fall wreaths, napkins, candles, some of our delicious gourmet items and more! It is a perfect time to stock up for your Thanksgiving and holiday entertaining needs. We will also have some of our dinnerware and serving pieces on sale (Hint Hint! even some of our Match, Arte Italica and other pewter will be on sale!!) The weather is WONDERFUL in Blue Ridge today so come on in and visit with us!