CHAMBERLAIN, S.D. (KELO) — Two best friends turned business partners have set up shop on Chamberlain’s Main Street.
It was a need for child care that caused the two women to cross paths.
Rochelle Hopkins was operating a preschool, and Jen Lauritsen had just moved to Chamberlain and needed care for her daughter.
“It was an instant connection. She was actually, I think, the first person I met when I moved to Chamberlain,” BFF’S Sip and Shop Boutique co-owner Jen Lauritsen said.
They became friends right away, and next, co-workers.
“I’ve always wanted to open a boutique, and it just happened to fall into place. We went out one night and decided we were going to do it together,” BFF’S Sip and Shop Boutique co-owner Rochelle Hopkins said.
In May, the women opened BFF’S Sip and Shop Boutique in downtown Chamberlain.
They sell women’s clothing in sizes extra small to 3X, gift items, and much more.
“Every single person that walks in this door can find something whether it would be a keychain, or jewelry or apparel or purse,” Lauritsen said.
“The great part about it is you get to sip wine or mimosas or whatever while you walk around and shop,” Hopkins said.
But there’s something else you can get in the store that you can’t fit into a shopping bag: a support system.
Both are cancer free.
“Once we started doing it is when we were both like, ‘You know what? This is meant to be more than just a boutique,’” Hopkins said.
The back area of the store is where a cancer support group is held on the first and third Thursdays of every month.
“Just getting together and being able to talk and even discussing the new medical advances and stuff helps the people going through it to just realize that they’re not alone,” Hopkins said.
“When I was initially diagnosed with breast cancer it was amazing the outpouring of help, guidance, even little things like delivering meals, just saying, ‘I’m there for you if you need to talk.’ It’s very important for every individual going through this journey to have support one way or another,” Lauritsen said.
Now the two best friends are making sure other people are feeling that same support on their cancer journeys.
“Just knowing that you have somewhere, one to go, if you are a survivor or you need guidance, but two, we’re here for everybody. We’re here for the community because the community loves us, so come on in, shop, share your stories with us, and we would love to help the community in any way we can,” Lauritsen said.
BFF’S stands for Beauty, Fashion, Faith, Survivors.
The store offers a 15% discount storewide for people living with breast cancer and survivors of the disease.
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