Gabie McGarrahALTON - Mike and Nancy Jo Wilson, owners of Jeni J’s Unique Gifts and Guest Cottages, celebrated their 10th Anniversary of business in Grafton Wednesday, July 1.

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The high waters of the Mississippi River reached only a few feet from the front door of the Stone Cottage, where the event was held on Main Street in Grafton.

Jeni J’s started in 2003, housed in the old Mineral Springs Mall in Alton. Nancy moved the business to Grafton in 2005 after purchasing several buildings to convert into cozy cottages that vacationers rent for a complete Grafton experience.

Jeni J’s now consists of six cottages, decorated to the tea, a wine shop and a gift shop.

“Ten years of service was my goal, so I feel really great about accomplishing what I set out to do,” said Nancy. “Now maybe we will go another ten years, we will see.”

Over the past decade, Jeni J’s has grown into a well-known strip of stunning establishments along Main Street, the main strip in Grafton. The gift shop offers an array of unique gifts to include Cardinals gear, clothing, jewelry, home décor and souvenirs.

“It started out as a women’s boutique and we started adding cottages and also added a wine shop,” said Nancy. “It just grew from there.”

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River Bend Growth Association representatives attended the celebration and kicked off the event with a ribbon cutting ceremony in honor of their successful small business corporation.

Among the many patrons, family and friends of Mike and Nancy was Grafton Mayor Tom Thompson, Godfrey Mayor Mike McCormick and former Alton Mayor Tom Hoechst.

After the ribbon cutting, attendees enjoyed food, drinks and live music by local musician Gabie McGarrah, a Flamenco guitarist from Wood River.

“The turnout tonight was fabulous,” said Nancy. “God cooperated with us with the beautiful weather, the flood water is going down, we have a wonderful crowd of business people, friends and family and the music is great.”

Click HERE to see Jeni J’s Unique Gifts and Guest Cottages on Facebook!



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Related Video:

Ribbon Cutting Ceremony: Jeni J's

Jeni J’s Unique Gifts and Guest Houses - River Bend Growth Association February 2016 Small Business of the Month