Eddy Johnston and Jody Boychuk, accompanied by Sophie the pug, stand in front of the sign they created for their new business location at 305 Main Street on July 1, 2020. (Lachlan Labere-Eagle Valley News)

Shuswap business duo broaden downtown beach vibe

Jody Boychuk and Eddy Johnston enjoying bigger, brighter Sicamous location

For 11 years, Jody Boychuk and Eddy Johnston have enjoyed bringing positive beach vibes to downtown Sicamous.

With summer 2020 underway, the business duo behind Beach Chik and Island Time are back at it, but at a larger Main Street location that is difficult to miss.

Formerly Shoppers Food Land, Boychuk and Johnston did substantial renovations on the building at 305 Main Street, transforming it into a space that fits with their business’ vibe.

Featuring prominently is the large, windowed garage door that is opened during the day to allow in light, air and visitors. Also facing the street is Boychuk and Johnston’s favourite feature of the building, a large wood deck that surrounds the front and one side of the business.

“It’s just such a nice addition to Main street with all the rest of the businesses that have done improvements – and it’s so central on Main Street and it’s really inviting…,” said Boychuk.

“I would have to agree,” added Johnston. “We talked about the design of the store last year when we picked up the space and both of us, the first thing on our wishlist was a nice, big deck… It’s an outdoor community, everybody wants to be outdoors when they’re here, nothing says the outdoors like a deck.”

The new building offers about 4,000 square-feet, that Boychuk and Johnston have designed and decorated in a way that offers ample room for customers peruse the business’ expanded offerings, from a large clothing section to jewelry, paddleboards and more.

While bike rentals are not an option this year due to supply challenges with the COVID-19 pandemic, Johnston said paddleboards will be available to rent. Bike accessories will also be available, and Johnston said the store will also be carrying skateboards.

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Apart from those supply issues, Boychuk said opening at the new location amid the pandemic went smoothly, with support from the community.

“The community pulled together with the town able to provide the sanitization and the flip flop (physical distancing) dots for the floor, and we were lucky that we have this 4,000 square feet that we could do the social distancing,” said Boychuk.

Since opening their doors on May 15, Boychuk and Johnston said the business has been well received by locals and visitors alike.

“People’s spirits have been lifted with being able to come back to (Sicamous) their happy place, and we’re one of those happy places,” said Boychuk.

The store employs eight staff, excluding Boychuk’s longtime friend and silent business partner Sophie the pug, who keeps a bed tucked away beneath one of the displays.

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