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Business Buzz: Vital Rain

Lidia and Paul Corey of Bethel opened the doors of their business, Vital Rain, in late April, giving Newtown and area customers a brick and mortar outlet for the line of all natural baby, children, mother, and pet products they have been selling online and at craft shows since 2013.

Located at 83 South Main Street in Newtown, Vital Rain is more than just a retail store filled with bath and body, herbal teas, and other wellness products. A generously-sized children’s playroom to one side of the retail section provides shoppers with a pleasant area for small children to play while the adults browse. Adjacent to the checkout is a sunny section of the store, where comfortable chairs welcome those in need of a break. A selection from the Vital Rain herbal tea line is set up on a small table there, and a pot of hot water is always bubbling. Customers are invited to use the free Wi-Fi at Vital Rain.

“Right after Jackson was born, 14 months ago, we started our business,” Ms Corey said. Two of the early products were the Vital Rain “Tushie” ointment and diaper changing wash. “People would ask ‘Where can we get more?’ when we were at shows,” she said.

The Coreys are pleased that Whole Foods will be carrying their line of baby, children, and motherhood products, mainly in the Hartford area. Other area retailers have also begun picking up the Vital Rain line.

What the Coreys were hearing, though, was that shoppers wanted a retail store in this area of the state. With plans to move to Newtown within the next year, this community seemed the smart choice in which to open a shop. “We loved the community feel [of Newtown], the giant flagpole, and the center of Sandy Hook,” Ms Corey said. “The response has been great since opening.”

The complete line of Vital Rain baby, children, motherhood, first aid, bath and body, wellness, and most recently, pet products are made by the couple in the upstairs studio of the retail outlet on South Main Street. “Everything we need is given to us through nature,” said Ms Corey, and it is that philosophy that guides the product line. Only organic sustainably grown raw herbs are used to create the ointments, extracts, and teas sold by Vital Rain, she said.

Vital Rain is also the distributor for “Tushies,” the hand-sewn cloth diapers made by Ms Corey’s best friend from 100 percent organic cotton, with a washable, organic bamboo liner. “Each month she makes a new cloth print for the covers,” said Ms Corey. While the initial outlay may be more than a box of disposable diapers, over the course of a baby’s diaper days, Tushies are actually more cost-effective, she said — and eco-friendly.

“In terms of foot traffic, we’re already attracting people who are into alternative products,” Ms Corey said, “but we’d love to attract people who are not familiar with the product. Stop by, have a cup of tea, and use the Wi-Fi. The staff is always willing to answer any questions.”

Vital Rain, 83 South Main Street, is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 am to 6 pm; Saturday, 10 am to 6:30 pm; and Sunday, 11 am to 4 pm. The store is closed Sunday.

To see the complete line of Vital Rain products or to place an online order, visit www.vitalrain.com. Live chat support is available online, or call 203-491-2255 during store hours to speak with staff.

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