Downtown Gift Shop Raggedy Man Wins Jump-Start Business Competition

Tom Giffey, photos by Andrea Paulseth

Matt Pabich, owner of Raggedy Man Goods & Gifts
Matt Pabich, owner of Raggedy Man Goods & Gifts

A downtown Eau Claire gift shop featuring a wide range of affordable gifts and household items is the grand-prize winner of the 2018 Jump-Start Downtown Business Competition. Matt Pabich, owner of Raggedy Man Goods & Gifts, received the Jim Mishefske Award at an awards luncheon on Tuesday, Oct. 2. The grand prize includes $5,000 in start-up capital (courtesy of Royal Credit Union), $750 in advertising credit from the Leader-Telegram, and a brand development strategy session with JB Systems. Raggedy Man opened in April at 401 S. Barstow St.

The Jump-Start competition’s Honorable Mention award went to Tabatha Voss, proprietor of The Broom & Crow, 106 E. Grand Ave., which specializes in Pagan and New Age books, gifts, and apothecary items. The Honorable Mention includes $2,500 in start-up capital (thanks to WESTconsin Credit Union, Market & Johnson, Mayo Clinic Health System, Weld Riley, and Xcel Energy) plus a $500 credit with SpinVision, which provides virtual tours.

Finally, the Innovative Idea Award, which includes a $1,000 cash award sponsored by Jamf, went to Bibi Krumenauer for Star Cup, a bubble tea shop currently inside Oakwood Mall that is expected to expand to downtown Eau Claire in the near future.

The Jump-Start awards, now in their 14th year, are a program of Downtown Eau Claire Inc., a nonprofit organization that works to promote business, housing, and culture in downtown Eau Claire.

Five businesses applied to this year’s competition, and all of them will receive a media package from DECI as well as eligibility for the Entrepreneurial Training Program offered by the Small Business Development Center. “We are excited to be able to offer more to applicants than ever before and, thanks to our sponsors, award more cash since 2005!” said Ray French, business assistance specialist with DECI.

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