On Sunday, Nov. 1st a new business opened its doors to the Gunnison community.
By Tess Peterson
When former Crested Butte South locals Cassia and Don Montgomery moved back to the Gunnison Valley, they were inspired to open a business that highlighted local farmers, ranchers, and other makers. Their vision was a bodega in the heart of downtown Gunnison. That is exactly what they have created on Main Street: Wilders Organic Market.
Cassia explained her mindset as “local first” when stocking Wilders and selecting vendors. As we all know, Gunnison gets bleak in the winters; this means that the fruits and vegetables cannot be grown year round in the Valley, but Wilders will carry local produce whenever possible. They also aim to stock a variety of products and—importantly—different products than other grocery stores in Gunnison carry.
In the aisles of Wilders, you can find fresh tortillas from Grand Junction, produce from Gunnison Valley farmers, Calder Farms pork and produce, Parker Pastures beef, bread from Paonia, body care essentials from Salida, and many more products hailing from the Western Slope of Colorado.
Wilders Organic Market features a ‘gourmet bar’ with a selection of finer meats, cheeses, and other accouterments, as well as some ready-to-eat foods. Customers can enjoy these food options as well as tea or local First Ascent coffee in the cozy seating area at the front of the store.
Cassia wants students to know that Wilders can serve as their new study spot. She also urges students to come take a look at the selection Wilders offers; she believes they have all the essentials for a busy college lifestyle.
Moving forward, Cassia wants Wilders to be a place where members of the community connect. There will be speaker events, tastings, art features, and many more opportunities for Gunnison to come together. General manager Nick Brunel said, “we want to be one of the many gateways to the community of Gunnison”.
Join Cassia—owner and former opera singer—and the whole Wilders Organic Market family this Saturday, Dec. 18 at 6:00 p.m. for Christmas caroling, Vermont sticky hot chocolate, and Double Shot coffee.
Wilders Organic Market is located on the corner of Main Street and Georgia Avenue.