The selection of outdoor equipment for sale in Steinbach has broadened with the opening of the city’s first dedicated store for hunters and anglers.
Fehr’s Sporting Goods Inc. opened Nov. 2 at 14 – 90 Brandt Street.
It’s the first business venture for 23-year-old Trevor Fehr, who runs the store with his wife, Emily.
Fehr is from the Sarto area and has been hunting and fishing since he was eight years old. He decided to start a store nine months ago after an injury prompted him to consider a new career.
"I was an electrician until I got injured," he explained. "I busted my knee up so I couldn’t really climb ladders or anything like that, so I decided to go with what my passion was."
A week after he threw open the doors, the Southern Health region, which includes Steinbach, was elevated to the critical (red) level on Manitoba’s pandemic response system.
The change ushered in heightened business restrictions that currently restrict Fehr to fulfilling orders via curbside pickup.
Last week, he was working on getting an e-commerce store up and running so he could start accepting orders directly through his website.
It can be hard to start a new business at the best of times, but Fehr is taking the hurdles in stride.
"It’s been a little bit challenging, but we seem to have a very supportive customer base, so it hasn’t been too bad actually."
Pandemic or no pandemic, Fehr believes his store will find favour with outdoor enthusiasts who have long wished for more selection in the local marketplace.
"Everybody around here hunts and fishes, and the only store here is Canadian Tire," he said.
He hopes to attract customers who have grown accustomed to driving to specialty stores in Winnipeg or ordering online.
Fehr said he stocks brands not available anywhere else in Steinbach. The store is the only area dealer for Vortex Optics, an American manufacturer of scopes and binoculars. Fehr also carries Buck Knives and Browning gun safes.
He also stocks eight brands of fishing and ice fishing rods and 13 brands of firearms. Fehr said he can also special-order guns and ammunition that he doesn’t have in stock.