LOCAL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT
Every town and community seems to have those staple businesses, the pillars that have been standing there throughout the years. For me, Crouse’s Cleaners is that business, it is quintessential Grande Prairie. Having been born and raised in Grande Prairie myself I don’t remember a time when Crouse’s Cleaners didn’t exist on 98th Avenue. As a child I remember drives in my mom’s old car to pick up the dry cleaning, I didn’t understand what they did there but was astounded that we could go through a drive-through to pick up our clothes. You don’t even want to get me started on the moving clothes rack; my childhood mind could not conceive the coolness as I begged my mom for one of my own. Fast forward and Crouse’s Cleaners is still there, doing what they have done for the last 40 years.
I had the pleasure of stopping by and talking to the General Manager and third generation member, David Crouse, about his family’s business, their role in the community, and dry cleaning and it did not disappoint!
Him and his sister Kathleen (also a member of the Crouse’s Cleaner team) were born and raised in Grande Prairie by parents who were also raised in Grande Prairie. The Crouse’s family history is rooted in this city. When I asked what David loved about Grande Prairie he struggled to put into words his appreciation for this community. When I say community I don’t simply mean the city itself but the people and stories, the fabric that weaves us all together. He explained the acceptance he’s found in different groups whether they be entrepreneurial networking groups or musical ensembles; wherever he’s turned he’s found open hearts and open minds.
The leadership team made up David and Kathleen along with their mother Dawn Marie all have a passion for giving back. Although the goal is the same they each carry it forward in a different way, supporting a variety of charities that each of them are passionate about. These range from Folk Fest to Coats for Kids to Imagination Library, with constant schemes of how they can add more and give more. Just as deeply at the Crouse’s care about the community and giving back, they care about clothes.
As I toured the building and got a rundown of the different steps and processes I was astonished at the intricacy of each step. For anyone who thinks you can get the same results at home I assure you, you cannot. Each station not only has a trained staff member but high end equipment and processes to ensure the upmost attention and care is applied to each piece. This team goes to conferences, tours other plants, and has won awards in the dry cleaning industry. This is not just what they do, it is who they are.
I could go on and on about this family and what they do for Grande Prairie both as people and as a business, but I won’t. Instead I encourage you to stop in there. Support businesses and people like the Crouse’s who are working hard to provide a great service for people while serving the people of our community.