By: Jennifer Britt
The Parsons Advocate
The City of Thomas has a new happy place for the residents of Tucker County. Happy and Moore Bakery and General Store owners Joan Emerson and Shelby Moore have embarked on a life journey to bring happiness to everyone that comes through the doors. When asked where did the name come from Moore with a smile on her face said, “She is happy. I am Moore.” Emerson said, “I love to bake. It is the thing that gives you the happiness. The thing that makes your soul smile. That is what it does for me. Shelby does the art, the creation of the design and everything artistic. And that is what makes her happy.”
Moore who has lived here her entire life is not new to business adventures. Moore previously ran a day-care and a trucking company. This is the first adventure for Emerson who moved to the West Virginia in 2016. Emerson said, “West Virginia saved my life! I was coming from an awful place in life and there is something about Tucker County that saves your soul. The neighborhood. The Community. The people. The woods and nature. Those are things that really saved me.”
To answer the question of why the duo started the new bakery and general store, Emerson responded by saying, “The community. The whole reason why we wanted to do the store was created for more of a community together. So, people like in an old general store can come have a bite to eat and a coffee, talk, and meet.”
Both Emerson and Moore say their families, friends, and the community are their biggest supporters. Emerson said, “We have had so much help and kindness from the community and our family.”
On the bakery side the cinnamon rolls are the specialty, but on the general store side a customer can find creations made by local artist. Moore said, “We do a lot of commissions. Most everything we can have in here is made locally. Between me making and other venders making them, like Jesse Vandevender, she typically does not make them, but she refurbishes cast iron. So, to give back to the community if you make things or do things you can sell them here so that you make money too.” Emerson added by saying, “The point of the store is so you can create income for women and families who are working more than one job.”
Emerson explained after her divorce she had to return to work making minimum wage and how she understands the struggles family face in earning enough income to support their families. Emerson said, “A part of this store is to raise the standard of living for people who are such hard workers and everybody in Tucker County are hard workers.” Moore said, “They can still work their day job but if they create at home and are trying to sell on Facebook or wherever this gives them a place to sell as well.”
Emerson and Moore said they appreciate Kevin, the City of Thomas, their families, and the community but more importantly they wanted to thank God. Moore said, “You go from trying to control everything to just giving it to God. He just puts everything in your place that needs to be there and that is how this whole thing got started.”
Moore explained she was ready to make a change from the day-care operations and the company Emerson worked for had shut their doors. So, the duo decided to embark on this new adventure together and have “A Place for Good, where Happiness is Inside” for their own. A place they now call Happy and Moore Bakery and General Store, and happiness is what you will find inside.
Locals received a 10 percent discount on items. Moore said, “The tourist helps but our main goal is to have everything locals need or want.” Emerson added by saying, “The goal is to sell things at a price that everybody can afford. We try to give people, like us, that do not have buckets of money, little things for the house or little things to eat.”
Right now, during the slowdown of the season Happy and Moore is closed Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday but orders can be placed for pick up by calling 681-228-9039. Store hours on Monday are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Friday, and Saturday hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
They can be found on Facebook and according to their website at HappyandMoore.com, “We are located at 172 Spruce Street, Suite A in Thomas, WV 26292. Freshly opened July 1, 2022.
Happy’s Bakery will offer a selection of homemade cookies, cinnamon rolls, pastries, cakes that have will glutens, no glutens and vegan desserts. We will offer a varied selection made from scratch with real ingredients like local farm fresh eggs and butter.
Moore’s General Store will offer a delightful variety of products from locally hand-crafted items, signs, art, pottery. From pantry staples to fun, delightful everyday retail items; that everyone will enjoy!”