Hazard business growing despite coronavirus pandemic

Appalachian Apparel is set to open a new location
Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 7:46 PM EDT
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - Despite the global pandemic, a local business is continuing to grow.

Appalachian Apparel Co. is opening a second location in Pigeon Forge, TN.

“Pigeon Forge sees about 15 million visitors a year so we can type into that market and that tourism side of it in and grow our customer base there’s a way we have here in Hazard then that’s great for us,” said Owner, Joey McKenney.

Plans for the location date back to February of 2019. Countless obstacles have pushed the progress into 2020. Now with the coronavirus, new challenges have arisen.

“It’s been kind of hard to juggle all of those things remotely I guess and then only spending a couple of days down there trying to organize with contractors and figure out things that need to be done and what all they need to be done,” said McKenney.

McKenney quit his day job last fall to run his business full-time.

“I’ve been working full-time and sometimes two full-time jobs and even I was in school part of the time as well and it just got to the point where I had to focus more on this and in the business continue to grow,” reflected McKenney.

The first year of the business has been a rollercoaster but McKenney says things are going well.

Appalachian Apparel Co. started selling masks. The masks are made out of the same material as their shirts.

“I just want to try them out see how they did and see how they felt see how well they would print and we sold out in two hours,” said McKenney.

The masks have been restocked and you can order them online.

The Pigeon Forge location had a soft open Fourth of July weekend. They hope to have a ribbon-cutting ceremony by the end of the month.

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