Chances are that if you happen to go to the Lyndonville Redemption store in this Vermont community, you will leave with much more than your favorite craft beer, Green Mountain State spirit or delicious deli sandwich. You will probably make some new friends who you will want to see again and again. This type of small-town customer service is one of the things that owners Shane and Emily Switser value as much as their extensive line of Vermont spirits and craft beers.
Emily and Shane Switser purchased the Lyndonville Redemption store on July 26 and maintain the warm customer service that their patrons are accustomed to receiving
“At the end of the day we are in the people business, selling spirits,” Shane said. “They can find beer and spirits elsewhere, but if they come in and have a friendly conversation with one of our employees, they will want to come back.” The store enjoyed a very strong summer and fall season right through October, Shane explained. Local residents and visitors alike know Lyndonville Redemption is the place to go for all their beverage needs whether they are looking for spirits, craft beer, wine or non-alcoholic beverages. When Emily and Shane purchased the Lyndonville Redemption, Agency Store 2024, on July 26, they already had a strong presence in the community as the owners of The Pizza Maker restaurant just up the road. The 406 Broad Street location still includes many familiar faces as several long-time employees opted to stay open under new ownership.
Jennifer Abbott has worked at the Lyndonville Redemption store for 27 years and is a familiar face for the store's loyal customers
Thanks to their decades of experience, this crew knows almost everyone who visits the store on a regular basis. “It’s a real community feeling here,” Emily said. Emily and Shane have known each other since they met in high school where they grew up in Hudson, NH. They are also business partners. Emily is the chief financial officer and Shane is the chief operating officer. They have about 80 employees between two businesses — 15 to 20 at the store and 60 or so at the restaurants. The store is also the only bottle and can redemption center in Lyndonville. It serves as a hub for residents who live in nearby towns. “Lyndonville is a busy little place for a small town. It’s where a lot of surrounding townspeople come to buy groceries and things,” Shane said. Lyndonville serves as a gateway to popular tourism destinations like Burke Mountain and Lake Willoughby as well as the rest of the Northeast Kingdom. By offering the best selection of Vermont distilled spirits and craft beers, Emily and Shane believe they will continue to grow their business on an incremental basis. Emily said they do not plan to increase the store’s overall space, but they will do their share of reorganizing and shape-shifting to improve product placement.
Shane Switser with his son, Colby, who worked as the store's night manager before heading back to school at the Air Force Academy in Colorado
Making sure they know what their customers want and being able to procure those products contribute to their success as beverage merchants. “It’s an ever-changing world of new products and new offerings. It’s just a matter of talking to the distributors and the customers and trying new items and seeing how they do. You constantly have to be innovating, changing and adapting,” Shane said. For example, Shane said they will offer a special selection of Whistlepig 10-year Rye during the holiday season, which Whistlepig is creating just for the store. Shane said they also want a tasting room where they can hold tastings for Vermont distilled spirits, including those made by St. Johnsbury Distillery, Barr Hill Distillery and Caledonia Spirits to name a few. The new owners are also grateful for the support they have received from former store owner Jeff Cole. Emily said Jeff comes in almost every day and helps them do one job or another, because he really wants them to succeed. Their son, Colby, an Air Force Academy student, also helps his parents by serving as night store manager when he is home from school. Thanks to the overwhelming support the store enjoys from the surrounding community and great product selection, Shane and Emily are con dent the Lyndonville Redemption store will continue to be a fixture in this corner of the Northeast Kingdom. “Our goal is to be the place you think about when you are having a get together and you are looking for any beverage you might need,” Shane said. Shane Switser with his son, Colby, who worked as the store's night manager before heading back to school at the Air Force Academy in Colorado.