The Cannery: A Standing Legacy of North Ogden Trade
If you're travelling down Washington Boulevard from North Ogden toward Ogden, it's not hard to miss the beautiful, historical building that serves as a home to several local businesses. The building, with the "North Ogden Canning Co." sign still embedded into the brick, has been serving our local community for nearly 115 years. The Historic North Ogden Cannery was built in 1901 on a lot purchased for only $125, where it became one of the oldest canning factories in Utah. The company sold tomatoes and peaches with the “Utah Pride” label, and the blast of The Cannery Whistle came to represent prosperity for the many farmers and thousands of employees who benefited from it up through 1973. Since then, many businesses have inhabited the building, enjoying its well-cherished legacy and its advantageous location.
Today, The Cannery is owned by Shawn Maynard and his wife, Sharlene. They have worked hard as a team to restore and renovate the building so as to create a cultivating environment that feels comfortable to the occupying businesses and their customers. They have successfully preserved the antiqueness of the historical Cannery, such as the original brick walls and flooring, while implementing modern designs and technology that we enjoy today, such as several acres of solar power panels.
To the left, a remodeled room in The Cannery. If you look closely, you can still see the outline of a window that used to overlook the yard of The Cannery. Now, that wall is shared by a building addition that is occupied by Bullfrog Spas. To the right, a preserved room with the original flooring (now refinished) and brick. All items displayed in these pictures are on display for sale at The Cannery Boutique owned by the Maynard family.
Bullfrog Spas: Improving Personal and Community Life
In 2006, Shawn began his franchise with Bullfrog Spas, establishing his store location at The Cannery. Bullfrog Spas is one of Utah's only factory outlet stores. They manufacture their hot tubs right here in Utah, which returns value back to the economy of local communities within our state. Bullfrog Spas offers exciting products from home and swim spas to BBQ grills to the quality products that maintain them for years. Shawn enjoys selling spas and BBQ grills, because customers are always excited to purchase one. "People have always said 'I'm going to own a spa one day'," Shawn says. "When they come to see me, it's that day. They are excited to fulfill that dream of making their backyard a stay-cation. It's always a happy experience."
The Bullfrog Spa Showroom
Giving Back to the Community
Bullfrog Spas sponsors many programs that are designed to support our community. One of their community programs is their Loan-a-Tent Program. If you have a community activity, outdoor art exhibit, community yard sale, soccer game--really anything outside that could use some shade--Bullfrog Spas would like to lend you their tent for the activity for free!
Bullfrog Spas has also sponsored the Utah Down Syndrome Buddy Walk as well as other small events throughout the community. Shawn has been deeply involved in the North Ogden Business Alliance, where he has advocated for strengthening local businesses by promoting the benefits of local shopping.
Interview with Owner Shawn Maynard
When did you first open the Cannery and Bullfrog Spa?
In 1994, I came to work in the Cannery Building for Lloyds Heating & Air. In 2003, I purchased the building from long time North Ogden resident LLoyd Searl. At the time our company, Utah Air Systems, offered HVAC & fireplace services. In 2006, we started our relationship with Bullfrog Spas, and by this time we had made significant progress in our efforts to remodel the Cannery. The Cannery Boutique started in the front of the building formerly occupied by Valley Auto Parts, and has grown to include 30+ local vendors, including gifts, furniture, and clothing in 3,000 square feet of display area. In the years since then we have grown our Bullfrog Hot tubs Franchise to include a super store in Logan and Layton, and for the last six years, we have been the top (or in the top 5) among Bullfrog Dealers.
You purchased the Cannery when it had fallen into disrepair and was threatened with demolition. What prompted you to purchase the building in such a condition and to undertake such a huge renovation?
My HVAC company occupied, at the time, the back half of the building, and we were family friends with the Searls. LLoyd had turned down many offers to buy the building over the years, but when he was ready to retire he was looking for someone to purchase the building and invest in its future. Part of the purchase agreement was our commitment to restore the building and keep it safe from demolition. I really like the character of this 115 year old building. The brick and timber construction has ties to the community and lends its credibility to its tenants. When you visit one of the dozen or so businesses inside the Cannery Building, you feel as though they have been here for a long time and will continue to be here tomorrow. All the things that make the building a challenge are also the things that add character and add to its appeal.
What is your favorite thing about being a part of North Ogden?
I enjoy the neighborhood community feel of North Ogden, and I am really excited for the future of the city. There is a lot of residential growth on its way, with a good mix of entry level homes and apartments near the business district. Also, the hillside will continue to grow with larger lots & nice homes. The culture of the city government is working to make the city better for both residents and businesses. Historically, property taxes have been high, but in the last couple years the city has made great strides to be more business friendly, using funds generated by business growth in the form of "RDA" and "CDA" to fund city beautification and future growth; things that ultimately bring about lower property taxes, more employment opportunities, and a thriving business district with convenient local places to shop.
Your facility is home to several businesses owned by local business owners. Can you explain why it is important to have local businesses thrive together at The Cannery?
The Cannery is a sort of "mall" with multiple businesses. Each business benefits from the other. Everyone is familiar with Great Harvest Bread on the front corner. It only occupies a couple hundred square feet of the 30,000 square foot building, but the constant flow of customers is great for the rest of the businesses. While customers are waiting for a sandwich they will wander through the boutique and hot tub showroom. While customers are waiting their turn at the Salon or for a massage, they can have a scone and coffee at Great Harvest. Pet Chalet - pet grooming has been at the Cannery for over 20 years. But still everyday someone new will come in to the building and they are always surprised at what they find.
What are some ways that you have been able to give back to the community?
Over the years, I have had the opportunity to participate in community and government committees, helping to shape city ordinances and attitudes. I have worked closely with the Spend It! in North Ogden campaign and North Ogden Business Alliance.
Why is giving back to the community so important to you?
Like most people that choose to serve their community, I saw an issue that I felt strongly about and chose to participate in the processes to make the situation better. For some, it is a neighbor with a car on blocks, others it is a pothole; for me, it was an unfavorable business climate. I am happy to participate in the process that has helped shape a better community for us all.
Is there anything you would like to say to the community?
Get involved. Shop local even if you just choose to get your gas locally. Every tank of gas contributes a few more cents to the city budget. Every loaf of bread, locally made craft, haircut, hamburger, and even every hot tub you purchase helps fund the city budget, providing the quality of life we enjoy and lower property taxes we all hope for.
What are your future plans for the Cannery/Bullfrog Spa in North Ogden City?
Over the past 20 years we have restored most of the building to its original brick and timber feel, and we just completed a complete re-roof and solar project, making this 115 year old building one of the greenest in town. In the coming year we plan to continue our work on building and expanding the Bullfrog showroom, remodeling the lobby, and we are working to bring a homemade ice cream shop to the building :)