An interview with Christine and Charles Allen of Lyon Mountain Blue Barn Antiques
Why did you decide to open a business in the Catskills?
Charles had his office in the WTC. After the first attack in 1992 we saw an opportunity to buy the farm and the business. Our goal was to get away on the weekends smell the roses and still have a secondary office right here in the Catskills. Opening our doors to sell Antiques came quite by accident.
What was step one in making your dream come true?
Our property, the business we bought, was a running water company closed down. We had always bought and collected Antiques since we met and traveled extensively. We had this huge loading dock building which we had sheet rocked and upgraded and we decided to make the transition to buy for others and so our business was born.
How long have you owned your business here?
We opened with one big show room in 2008 which we lovingly filled and decorated with exceptional Antiques and Collectibles. We added on 4 more show rooms since then. We have slowly built a very nice clientele of new and repeat customers. We are also doing major Antique shows offering our goods to greater crowds. Having 2500 people stopping by your booth to look and buy is a very exhilarating experience. We love it!
What has been your biggest lifestyle change?
Dividing our time between city and country.
What are your favorite things to do here (when you aren’t working)?
Planting, growing, harvesting our own vegetables, herbs and potatoes, canning and freezing being connected to nature and all abundance has become a better way of life for us.
Name one thing you love about living and working upstate?
The hills, mountains are alive. We enjoy the peace and quiet, long walks on the property, eating outside in the warm summer days just content and grateful for our life. Commiserating with our customers, making new friends with like minded people.
What advice would you give to people who are beginning to dream about starting a business in the Catskills?
DREAM BIG, HAVE A VISION, MAKE IT HAPPEN. Right here, right now is a great time in the Catskills. Opportunities are plenty full to start a new venue a new business. We can feel a new shift with more people vacationing here, Delaware County is ripe with many new locations and availability with lower start up costs. The local communities, especially the Greater Roxbury Business Association and their members are very supportive and ready to help and so are other business owners, we are all in this together.