A dog treat business staffed by people with disabilities will open a physical storefront this summer.
Beyond Bones is set to officially take ownership of a retail space at 219 Hubbard St., Suite A, in Allegan. The space is located next to The Arc of Allegan County, the organization that launched the business.
Beyond Bones, which opened in 2021, makes all-natural dog treats and employs people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The treats currently are made and packaged by 20 bakers using kitchen space at Blessed Sacrament Parish in Allegan and Path of Grace in Wayland.
Since its founding in 1956, The Arc has advocated for the inclusion and dignity of individuals with disabilities. Beyond Bones was created in response to limited employment opportunities and skill development programs for people The Arc serves.
“The creation of Beyond Bones has been a labor of love for The Arc, its board of directors and our dedicated volunteers,” said Stacy Engelsman, executive director of The Arc. “Seeing the sense of accomplishment and pride on our employees’ faces is as rewarding as knowing they are earning fair pay while engaging meaningfully in the community.”
Dog treats in regular and mini sizes will be available for sale at the store, as well as other pet-focused products. New roles for individuals with disabilities will be created to help with operations.
Since summer 2021, Beyond Bones treats have been sold at farmers markets, vendor fairs, online and at The Arc office. Fourteen retail partners located in and around Allegan County also sell the treats and still will once the store opens.
An official opening date is pending renovation progress.