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Summer Festivals

06 June, 2017 0 comments Leave a comment

Summer seems like a distant dream for so many months of the year in Minnesota. I am delighted that it still fills my heart with joy when it suddenly arrives, as if by surprise.

The Great Soap Company will be pitching our new tent at several events in and around Rochester this summer. We kicked off our festival scene with Art on the Ave on June 3, 2017. We were impressed with this group of super friendly, organized volunteers. This is the third year we have joined Pauly Bennett, of Dwell Local at AOA and we scored a spot beside the new sculpture. Aurora by Karl Friedrich was unveiled as the 13th permanent art installation in the Slatterly Park neighborhood. It was awesome to see the unveiling of Aurora.  I could feel the excitement of the families who will enjoy Karl’s vision for this evolving neighborhood every day, by simply looking out the window. It made me realize what a gift the Rochester Community has in the Slatterly Park neighborhood. It was a beautiful day for the event, sunny, with temperatures in the low 90’s. We really enjoyed the live music and I was impressed with all the interactive art activities for children; this event is truly a gem. If you have never gone you really need to. Once again, those awesome AOA volunteers came through and welcomed us to shut things down before 4 to beat a little summer thunder shower. We had the show on the road just in time to avoid a sudsy mess, big thank you to Pauly, Lori and Scott for helping us pack everything up so quickly.

We are off to a Great start with our summer festival mojo and I’m confident we will learn and grow with each show. We are really excited to be at Thursdays on First for the first time. Look for us June 22, July20 and August 17 at this cherished celebration of summer in Rochester. Check out the awesome interactive map on the TOF web site to find your favorite local businesses and exactly when and where to find them; pretty high tech. I believe everyone at the Great Soap Company would do a no rain dance to keep the rain away for our dip into outdoor venues. Please join us at Berne Wood-Fired Pizza Artisan Market on August 2. Jon and I have never experienced this Wednesday evening summer tradition but we’ve heard the buzz. All the profits from this completely volunteer operated event go to nonprofit causes in the community. A summer evening with music, pizza, and friends in beautiful southern Minnesota and giving back to the community, that’s priceless.  

TOF August 17 will be our summer finale.

We’ll kick things off in the fall at the Olmsted County Fair Grounds September 22 & 23. Weathered & Rusty Market always offers unique items for creative minds. A great variety of really nice vendors in the old limestone building give this show a really great vibe.

Ask about our newest products when you stop by our tent. We are excited for you to see the additions we’ve made to our display. The Great Soap Company is geared up to keep you clean and fresh this summer.

Farewell 2016

31 December, 2016 0 comments Leave a comment

I try to be a positive person, generally. Speaking personally, I found 2016 very trying, tiring and well, just sad really.
Jon’s father, Jerry Janet lost his battle with lung cancer in February 2016. Jerry spent his final days with his family in his home just as he wished. It was hard to say goodbye to the man who gave me such a wonderful husband. I was blessed to be able to tell him how grateful I am. There was so much love in the house that Jerry built the final days of his life. I know he felt it & took our love with him to the next place.
Still reeling from the loss of Jon’s father, my lifelong friend, Lori Reynolds lost her son Alex to depression in March. Suicide touched my life just as it has touched Alex’s son, Cohen’s life. The loss of Alex left me with a hole in my heart. My daughter Zoe and I got semicolon tattoos like a couple of hipsters to try to fill the hole but it was only punctuation. To honor Alex I remember that I can never know someone else’s pain, so I try to show kindness to everyone.
The Janet family said goodbye to our beloved cat, Isabella Ophelia (izzi b) in November. Izzi was a wild one. She let us hold and comfort her in her last days, which helped to bring us comfort and peace. We miss her.
2016 has been tiring. I am looking forward to working a little less for the world famous Mayo Clinic in 2017 and a little more for The Great Soap Company. Mayo has taught me to work with integrity for the last 25 years for which I will always be grateful. I am thankful for the huge art fair they throw at the Mayo Civic Center each November. The Mayo Craft Show is the super bowl of art fairs. It showcases the employees, volunteers and retirees more creative endeavors and supports small business in a beautiful way. The event offers the community the opportunity to find a variety of handmade gifts under one roof. We saw hundreds of customers this year, it was amazing! It was fun to hear about where you like to pick up our products, like; Dwell Local, Scrub Your Butt Soap Company, Treats and Treasures, and Urban Artifacts of Preston. It was awesome to make new connections with folks I interact with through my career at Mayo like Sue, who picks up our products at Hunt’s Drug. I had the pleasure of meeting two of Sue's children. I introduced myself as their mom’s cheerleader at the DAHLC. With Sue’s permission, I proudly told them that I support and encourage her early morning trips to the gym and what a great job she is doing of taking care of herself. It was pretty cool. The shows we do give me a unique opportunity to intermingle my carefully compartmentalized life. To talk about our passion for soap making with people who see us as Mayo employees everyday was a great opportunity for Jon and I. We enjoyed sharing the soap making part of our lives with the community at several shows and look forward to expanding our repertoire in 2017.   
I enjoyed sharing quotes with thousands of Mayo employees and their families at the DAHLC in colorful liquid chalk on stark black boards each day, again in 2016. One positive thought in the morning might change your entire day so I also send a (generally positive, occasionally cynical) ‘thought’… provoking email to over 400 people each day too. The kindness I feel from others in response to these small gestures sustains me. It reminds me that we are all more alike than we may appear.
Thank you for supporting our little Great Soap Company in 2016 – we look forward to cleaning you up in 2017 as we celebrate our 5th anniversary. Jon and I will be ringing in the New Year at home making Gin and Tonics three ways, in our Shaving puck, a 4 ounce bar soap and in a glass with ice and lime. Who knows? If we get really wild, you might see Gin & Tonic in our AAA Beard Oil in 2017. Celebrate responsibly. Cheers!

 

Merry Christmas & Thank you!

20 December, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

It has been an exciting season for the Great Soap Company. Thank you so much for coming out to see us at the shows this fall. It was great to hear your feedback. We are thrilled that you love our products and we can’t wait to show you what we are working on. It’s not too late to pick up Great Soap for a stocking stuffer.

Adourn {furniture rehab} carries our lovely specialty soaps, one of a kind gifts, and fabulous, unique furniture. You must check out Melissa’s charming shop on Main Street in Chatfield, Minnesota.

Autonomy Tattoo & body piercing has a nice selection of our products & some of our limited edition coffee oatmeal stout. Give yourself a little bling and talk to Ben about getting pierced while you’re there!

Dwell Local carries all of our products; Dwell is conveniently located on the corner of 7 Street & 6 Avenue in NW Rochester. Designer, Paul Bennett features local artist’s work and you will always find something new. Paul also makes clean burning soy candles in a variety of scents.

You can pick up Great Soap at Minnesota Joe's in Spring Valley Minnesota while you are shopping for your favorite outdoor enthusiasts.

Scrub your Butt Soap Company in the Kahler Grand subway has a large selection of Great Soap Company products and great selection of thoughtful gifts.

We hope you shop small this holiday season and invest in your community. It has been great working with these small businesses and building relationships with these wonderful, creative business owners.

We hope that you have found the perfect gifts this year for everyone you love. There is nothing better than watching our girls open their presents on Christmas. We found lovely, handmade pieces for each of them and can’t wait to give them each their unique gift and see the expressions on their faces. Thank you for shopping with us, A Very Merry Christmas & a Peaceful New Year to everyone from The Great Soap Company.

Beer & Venues

20 September, 2015 0 comments Leave a comment

     Jon and I are having fun mixing up some great craft beers from Derrick Chapman into our amazing ‘beered and body bars’. We also made some ‘Coffee Oatmeal Stout Soap’; same Great, limited edition soap we made for you last year, with the same Great scent! The smell is filling our house and I love it! It’s so warm and earthy, smells like fall.  Look for our beer soap at Dwell Local, Autonomy tattoo and on our website in October.

     We wanted to make sure you know where you can shop with us this 2015 holiday season. Save the dates and stop by and say hi.

September 24,25,26 – Weathered and Rusty Market (Olmsted County  Fairgrounds)

November 6,7 – Where the blacktop ends - (pre-view shopping night Nov 5th with ticket purchase for ovarian cancer)

November 21 – Mayo Clinic Employees craft show (Mayo Civic Auditorium)

December 5 – UU Handcrafted Bazaar (First Universalist Unitarian Church)

Please click on the links or ask us for more details on any of these shows. Hope to see you at the shows! 

 

The Weathered & Rusty Market 2014

05 October, 2014 0 comments Leave a comment

     Today is our last day at The Weathered & Rusty Market. Despite the 'lip balmy' temperatures, rain and wind we have had a lot of fun and met some great folks the past couple of days. We saw old friends and made new ones. We met returning customers who were given great soap as gifts and came back for more.
     It was fun making gift boxes with my daughters, Tia and Zoe. We honored our rescue dog “Lulah” on a couple boxes we donated to the silent auction for Small Dog Rescue of Minnesota. It felt really good to help raise some money for this important work in our community. Because we had recently lost our dog we wanted to do a little something extra for the cause and donated 10% of our profits from our sales Friday to Small Dog Rescue of Minnesota.
     We have had the best vendor neighbors at the Weathered & Rusty Market selling beautifully handmade products. I have been admiring their work and wish I could buy something from all of them. Zoe and I will highlight some of their amazing work on Instagram and Facebook this morning. If you haven't made it out to the Olmsted County fairgrounds yet, we hope to see you today!

Grateful

29 June, 2014 0 comments Leave a comment

        Thank you for your web orders! With your help we were able to double our donation to Angela Jackson and AFSP. Angela reported that the walk in Seattle was a little rainy and AMAZING! She and Kayla's Godmother walked to honor Kayla on June 14th. Angela raised almost $2,500 for suicide prevention and awareness. We are so grateful to Angela for walking and to our customers for supporting her!


Grateful that these baby robins survived our recent storms.

    Merry Christmas!

    22 December, 2013 0 comments Leave a comment

    The Great Soap Company would like to thank our awesome customers and wish you a very Merry Christmas and a peaceful New Year. We are looking forward to introducing new products and fabulous new scents in 2014 and we can’t wait for you to try everything we are working on. Thank you for a Great year.

    Happy Holidays from The Great Soap Company

    Thanks for your support!

    09 June, 2013 1 comment Leave a comment

    We are so grateful for our awesome customers and would like to thank you for shopping with The Great Soap Company. We feel blessed to have fans across the country supporting our small business. We're excited to offer Great Soap at Adorn {Furniture Rehab} in Chatfield, Minnesota, Autonomy Tattoo and Body Piercing in Rochester, Minnesota Joe’s in Spring Valley, Minnesota and Positively the Center for Success in Escanaba Michigan. Do you think The Great Soap Company would be awesome to have at a shop near you? email me at lisa@greatsoapcompany.com and I’ll see what I can do to make it happen! It’s easier than ever to pick up our natural product locally, simply place your order on our web site and pay no shipping. I’ll make sure you get the goods in a timely manner. Pick up a bar at Autonomy, conveniently located on North Broadway sandwiched between Dairy Queen and Taco Bell. Brian and the guys at Autonomy have been very supportive and we are happy to be working with this great local business. You don’t have to have body art to buy natural soap at Autonomy, stop by and pick up a bar for yourself and one for gift giving. Natural soap is a great gift – consumable gifts create positive energy and no clutter. If body art is your thing – Autonomy is the place to go and The Great Soap Company is the perfect way to pamper your art investment. Even if body art isn't for you open your eyes to these inspiring talented young artists work and pick up a bar of soap while your there!

    Yesterday Jon, Zoe and I celebrated our nephews, Ben and Blaine’s High School graduations with family at my sister’s place in Oronoco. We have seen a great deal of rain in southern Minnesota recently, the past 60 days or so… so it was so fabulous to see sunshine for the festivities. The sun also shone on Adorn {Furniture Rehab} shop owner Melissa Wood’s wedding day! Congratulations Melissa and Tony we are so happy the sun made an appearance on your very special day! We got home from the party to find a package all the way from Connecticut! The Great Soap Company Founder, Sandra Pike McShane made a beautiful stepping stone featuring our logo. Sandra is one crafty bitch and these fabulous stepping stones are her latest creative venture!

    Sandra sent a nice letter confessing her addiction to Morning Dew and shared excellent soap reviews from her friends who got gift baskets (including Great soap) for Christmas! We adore your thoughtful gift and are happy you love our soap as much as we do!

    While I was getting soap ready to ship to Connecticut I put together a gift box for a benefit auction next weekend. I choose an image of a vintage Indian motorcycle on a lovely wooden cigar box and loaded it with an awesome selection of Great Soap. My little brother Greg and his girlfriend Jennifer are collecting items for the ride away SMA silent auction next Saturday. Thanks Greg and Jennifer for raising awareness and money for this cause and honoring the memory of a precious little girl taken much too soon. Check out fsma.org to find out how you can help.

    The Great Soap Company is excited for warmer weather and a little sunshine would be awesome. We're having fun working on new products for you. We used local fresh goats milk in our soap and scented it with cut grass fragrance oil, the interesting combination is currently curing. find out how it turns out right here on our blog.  Have a fun, safe summer!

    Have Fun, play hard and get dirty, we’ll clean you up naturally.