Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

Business Briefs


August 16, 2018

Bookstore, tea shop opens at Fairgrounds

Last month, Chris Palmisano opened a new and used bookstore and tea shop in Dalton City.

Lao Tzu and Company offers an eclectic range of genres that span Western classics and postmodern fiction, to tarot reading, and ancient and contemporary Chinese literature.

“I want to create a bookstore where people can come in and see books on the shelf that they won’t see anywhere else,” Palmisano said. “New bookstores are going to show you what’s current. A well-curated bookstore is going to show you books that no one else is going to.”

He said he aims to create a place in town where people can hang out in an intellectual environment where they can read and converse. “I wanted to create an intellectual space for people of all ages, high school kids and adults,” Palmisano said. “They can come in and talk about books or just hang out. It’s somewhere to go when you don’t want to drink.”

Unless you want to drink tea, of course. Palmisano carries a range of Chinese green, black, oolong and puer teas along with tea ware. Patrons can drink tea by the cup or order it in bulk.

Palmisano plans to offer subsidized books to certain demographics, including discounts to teachers—anything to encourage people to read more, Palmisano said. “And I’ll give copies of Moby Dick to all mariners for $5,” Palmisano said.

His shop space is currently located in the Fairweather Ski Works shop but he plans to move to another space in October.

Lao Tzu and Company is open from noon to 10 p.m. on weekdays and 1 a.m. on weekends with short breaks in between to walk his dog.

New owners operate Haines Hitch-up

The new owners of Haines Hitch-up R.V. Park said business is good for their first summer in Haines.

“We bought the business on June 14 and started working the same day,” said George and Laura Hoffman. The Hoffmans, originally from southern New Jersey, said they had been thinking about buying an R.V. park on the East Coast before hearing that Haines Hitch-up was for sale.

The couple had vacationed in Southeast Alaska and after doing research, said they fell in love with Haines and the business, formerly owned by Fred and Shirley Bretthauer for 23 years.

“We decided this was the right one for us,” Laura Hoffman said.

George Hoffman said it’s been a “good average” summer for the business, which offers 92 spaces for R.V.’s as well as showers, restrooms and a laundromat.

The Hoffmans said the R.V. park will close in September as they head back to the east coast to be with family for the winter, but they are grateful that locals have been welcoming and willing to share their stories of coming to Haines.

“We were very impressed and thankful for everyone who has been welcoming, kind and helpful,” Laura Hoffman said.

Dog groomer offers fresh cuts, baths

Haines dogs can get a fresh haircut at new business, Lizzy’s Dog Grooming.

Longtime professional dog groomer Liz Wilkerson moved to Haines from Fairbanks in May to be closer to a friend and enjoy fishing in Southeast.

“I’ve been grooming dogs for five years,” Wilkerson said. She said she went to pet grooming school where she received her certification, and she has a borough business license.

Wilkerson said she is running the business from her Small Tracts Road home, and is using the bath facilities at HARK. Services include bathing, cleaning ears and anal glands, cutting nails and cutting hair. Wilkerson said pricing depends on the size of the dog and services requested.

“I love animals and I’m anxious to please,” Wilkerson said. Call 907-419-7470 for more information.


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