Darrin and Melanie Dennison hope to encourage people to get out and enjoy the areas around Cortez with their new store Run + Hike.
The store has opened at 1 W. Main St. in Cortez, behind FB Organics, which the Dennisons also own and operate.
With the health food store and new running store, Darrin Dennison said he hopes to help customers stay healthy so they can explore the outdoors in Montezuma County.
“If you feel good, you can get outside and enjoy where you live,” he said.
Run + Hike will offer running apparel and shoes for men and women. The store also will carry Cortez-themed hats and T-shirts, as well as a selection of Osprey Packs.
Darrin and Melanie said they spent 18 years living in Texas and returned to Cortez several years ago. Coming back home after so long in flatland Texas made them appreciate the rugged lands of Southwest Colorado even more, Melanie said.
She said they wanted to create a business from scratch in Cortez for a while.
“Opening our health food store brought it full-circle,” she said.
Running gear can be expensive, but Darrin Dennison said he’s committed to providing quality items that are also affordable. Cortez consumers value quality, he said.
Darrin Dennison said he’s seeking up-and-coming companies that make products fitting those criteria to keep in stock at Run + Hike.
In-house designers have been creating clothes with Cortez and 81321 area code themes, Dennison said. Other stores in the area stock Colorado-themed gear, but few offer items that are specifically Cortez, he said.
“We want to make something awesome for Cortez,” he said.
With his new store, Darrin Dennison said he hopes to encourage locals and visitors to get out and explore.
“We want to remind ourselves that this is an awesome place to live,” he said. “We’re trying to fuel that experience.”