CANON CITY, Colo. — A store that sells products made or refurbished by prisoners is hoping to do a booming business in Canon City.
The new store named The Cellhouse is selling tractors, canoes and motorcycles. It also sells fishing gear and wood products.
Other products include electric guitars, plants and the Buena Vista prison’s leather products from dog collars to saddles.
Furniture from the Fremont prisons’ furniture shop also is available, along with other products that come from other sources for correctional officers, like uniforms, duty belts and other equipment.
Dan Brown said the goal is to put a positive spin on the community’s prison history.
“A woman asked me why Canon City tries to hide that it is a prison town, why not embrace your history? I thought, ‘What can we do to make it a positive?’ And I thought I wanted to open a store downtown with inmate-made items,” he said.
Colorado Correctional Industries has a small store at the former women’s prison in Canon City, but it is behind razor-wire fencing where few shoppers dare to tread.
His wife, Deb Ophus-Brown, will also help run the store, the Pueblo Chieftain reported (http://tinyurl.com/zyy6xcl ).
“The thing I like about Correctional Industries is that it is a rehabilitative program for the inmates. When they get out of prison, they have a trade” and are less likely to return to a life of crime, Deb Brown said.
Information from: The Pueblo Chieftain, http://www.chieftain.com