Green & Bear It! is an eclectic neighbourhood store with an engaging collective feel. Customers are often met by a most adorable greeter. Lily is a four-year-old chocolate Labrador, whose eyes are as big as her heart. She can be found sitting on the sidewalk tail wagging in happy anticipation as shoppers approach.
“Lily loves people and is great with kids,” says owner Chris McAnerney. “It’s not uncommon to look out the window and see a bunch of children piled on top of her, petting her, playing with her and just generally having fun while their parents are shopping and visiting inside the store.”
Throughout its 12 years in business, Green & Bear It! has continually evolved. McAnerney moved to Kelowna from Toronto 14 years ago, she appreciated the longer growing season.
“I started gardening when my kids were young,” she explains. “It’s a great form of stress relief, a sort of mindless meditation mixed with physical labour.” She and her husband saw an opportunity for a store that sold gardening and gift products and so Green & Bear It! was born.
The emphasis at Green & Bear It! has evolved from gardening to general gifts with exciting, new product lines being added every year. From quirky giftware to funky jewelry, stunning scarves to puzzles and toys, Green & Bear It! is the perfect place to pick up an on-the-go gift.
For the fermented grape nut on your list, there are iced wine jellies from Langley while your very own Lily will appreciate a beaded wooden collar made in Vancouver. Green & Bear It! carries one of the best selections of greeting cards in the city as well as the largest array of Thymes soaps and lotions in the valley. One whiff of Thymes Frasier Fir and you’ll be sitting affront a roaring fire whittling away at your Christmas shopping list.
Nearly four years ago, Green & Bear It! added clothing to their wonderful array of products and McAnerney’s friendly, fashion-forward daughter Katie Baker joined the staff. “I love working with my daughter,” says McAnerney. “Most people would be surprised to learn Katie is actually a real tomboy whose element is sitting on the lake with her boyfriend, fishing rod in her hand!”
This holiday season treat yourself or someone you love to the softest jammies from PJ Salvage sleepwear – you’re sure to get a better sleep! Or find your zen in the Neon Buddha collection or your inner fashionista in C’Est Moi clothing. Their bamboo and bamboo/cotton blend fabrics are as smooth as a glass on the lake in summer but your relationship will last much longer.
Family and friends are very important to McAnerney and guide the store’s community philanthropy. “We donate a lot of items for door prizes and silent auctions in our neighbourhood,” explains McAnerney. “Another project close to my heart is The Rider Cider Ride for Autism. My nephew has autism and my brothers created the event to help raise funds for much needed support resources in Kelowna. Green & Bear It! donates prizes and participates as a team.”
Friends and family, great gifts and a happy pooch, you’ll find them all at Green & Bear It!