Success Story for:
Kip & Dawn Jenkins of The Party Shop
Jamison “Kip” Jenkins and his wife Dawn were transitioning from Military after 15 years of active duty service in the army. Their new mission was to own and operate their own business.
Mr. Jenkins contacted the Tennessee Small Business Development Center (TSBDC) via Fort Campbell Army Career and Alumni (ACAP) Program. He registered for the “Operation Boots to Business” workshops held at Fort Campbell. He continued with additional workshops and one-to-one business counseling with the TSBDC. “The TSBDC taught me how to prepare a business plan, provided me resources, provided valuable advice on the fundamentals of running a small business and assisted with financial projections”, said Kip.
Kip, a former artilleryman at Fort Campbell said, “It was a window of opportunity. My wife has been in the party business for a few years, so we decided to bring a party shop to Clarksville. Now people don’t need to do a 45-minute drive to Nashville.” Dawn said that after oldest son Bradley, 6, turned one year old, she started making birthday shirts as a sideline. “I added party supplies to my website”, she said, “then we ended up here (in Clarksville), loved it here, happy to be here, but there was no party store, so here we are. We have a lot to offer.” While the independently owned and operated shop has a lot of items geared to kids, there are plenty of supplies for more grown-up affairs such as graduations, military welcome-home ceremonies, weddings, and bridal and baby showers as well.
Kip gave much of the credit for getting started in a full-fledged business operation to Fort Campbell’s ACAP program, which Hosted the SBA and Tennessee Small Business Development Center “Operation Boots to Business” workshops. Kip stresses to fellow veterans that the TSBDC counseling and training classes are both worthwhile and free. “It’s just a matter of you taking advantage of your opportunities,” he said, “and then making the best of it.”
It’s just a matter of you taking advantage of your opportunities and then making the best of it.