story by Patricia Merrick | photography by Jessi Gowan
A bold streetscape plan for downtown Crossfield developed last summer with input from residents will guide future investment, bringing to life a vibrant Railway Street that honours heritage and brick facades.
Although it’s a small town with fewer amenities than big cities like Calgary or even Airdrie, there’s plenty Crossfield has to offer so residents don’t have to leave town to pick up a jug of milk or a last minute birthday gift. Whether you’re looking for a bite to eat, some retail therapy, furniture, a cat to adopt or a real estate agent, you can find it in Crossfield.
Carmen Cornelius opened Carmens Bigway Foods, a well-loved grocery store located in downtown Crossfield, in 2007. The family business is known for its excellent customer service.
“It’s a great opportunity to serve the people of Crossfield,” Cornelius said. “Customer service is our priority.”
Carmens Bigway Foods, like many small town businesses, gets involved in and supports various community events, according to Cornelius.
“They shop at my store, I like to give back,” he said.
Remon Abdo, owner and pharmacy manager at Rockyview Pharmacy, also takes pride in customer service.
“We have the best customer service,” he said. “We are a pharmacy and usually we deal with patients or sick people. So these people are usually in bad situations and they need help and that’s how we help them – with the best customer service, plus medications.”
The business opened in 1904 and is located in downtown Crossfield. Abdo has worked there for three years and said it’s important to him to support and sponsor community events.
Tennelle Gilfoil, branch manager of ATB Financial on Railway Street in Crossfield, echoed Abdo’s comments.
“Basically, any time there’s something going on in town, you can expect to see us in some capacity there,” she said, adding the branch opened in Crossfield in 1982 and prior to that, an ATB agency was in town to serve residents’ banking needs.
“We are the current 2017 Business Citizen of the Year, nominated through the Crossfield Chamber of Commerce,” she said. “And we have been recognized for partnering a lot with the Town of Crossfield and volunteering our staff time to help with the community events.”
Another Crossfield favourite is CP Wood Gallery, which opened in town in 2003 and is located on Nanton Avenue.
According to Mark Lang, who runs the business with his family, they decided to set up shop in Crossfield for the affordability and ever since then, they have become quite involved in the community as well. The business often donates tools and recycled materials, and all staff members volunteer for the Crossfield Fire Department.
“We sacrifice our business. When our pagers go off, all four of us go to the fire hall, be the first responders and we unfortunately have to lock our doors at that time,” he said.
CP Wood Gallery offers custom-built furniture and any of your woodworking needs, whether it’s for the kitchen, dining room, bathroom or bedroom. The company also ships furniture internationally and takes pride in its flexibility when it comes to design and materials used, Lang said.
“We can be very simple or we can be very unique in our design.”