A story from Pacific Lutheran University.
For Whidbey Island business owner Roshel Donwen ’17, her close-knit island community is everything. She finds fulfillment in running her store, 3 Sisters Market, providing local food and goods to the people she considers family.
“The best part about running and owning 3 Sisters Market is the connection to our community that we have,” she says. “Everything we sell is local, so I know specifically, any customer that comes in and buys a product from us is directly supporting our community here locally.”
The business major operates the market in Coupeville, Washington with the help of her family. The business sells their farm grass-fed beef, all-natural pork, grass-fed lamb, all-natural chicken and eggs. Customers can also purchase meat, dairy, produce and goods from other farmers and sellers located in the Pacific Northwest.
“We are so community-based, and something important to us is being able to provide local, wholesome, good products to our community,” Donwen says. “That includes all the meat we raise, but any other products that we carry in here. The pie, the ice cream, the veggies —it is all local.”
It is evident how much pride and a sense of responsibility Donwen has in her work. During the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many grocery stores were struggling to keep shelves filled as customers raced to stock up while quarantining. This put a strain on many businesses and farmers. Donwen says she and her team worked hard to ensure her customers still had access to local food and that her suppliers —local farmers — had a place to sell their goods.
“For some of our local vendors, this was their only outlet to sell products,” she said.