New owners move business next to Mouse’s Chocolates
Ouray residents Heather and Josh Smith are the new owners of O’Toys and are moving the beloved Ouray toy store a few blocks south to a new location just off Main Street.
The couple has lived in Ouray since 2008 and have enjoyed O’Toys since they first visited Ouray in 1997. After helping out Tina and Jeff Moyers, the previous owners who tried to manage the business from Texas during the last two years, the Smiths ultimately got a deal they couldn’t refuse for the purchase of the store.
Heather said they are “proud to carry on the legacy of O'Toys.”
Though Heather and Josh Smith have other jobs, their work is flexible enough to make ownership of the toy store work. Josh owns a residential design firm, JAS Designs, and Heather is a certified public accountant who owns Western Slope Business Solutions. They will rely on store manager Liz Anderson to carry on the operations.
The couple already had plans to use the off-season to move the toy store to its new location next to Mouse’s Chocolates at 229 Sixth Ave., and the COVID-19 emergency stay-at-home orders happened to coordinate with their timeline.
“This is such a vibrant corner and we are excited to be able to secure this location,” Heather said.
A grand opening is planned for May 15, but that could change depending on health orders. Hours may be adjusted, but currently the Smiths are planning to line up hours with those of Mouse’s Chocolates through the summer.
Once opened, “we will be following guidelines put in place for everyone’s safety,” Heather said.
Inventory will stay mostly the same, with the addition of Legos, a favorite of the couple’s son, Levin.
“Our favorite play items are puzzles, Lego, and science kits, and you will definitely find these items when you visit the toy store along with lots of (stuffed animals), party and art supplies and other great items that will keep you entertained,” Heather said.
The Smiths are looking ahead to better times when their store can become a gathering space for locals. They want to host puzzle competitions, Lego tournaments and game nights. They are working on an interactive game room using a floor projection system.
“We love encouraging family together time and hope to be an asset to Ouray and a place you will not want to miss on your next visit,” Heather said.
The toy store needs to hire four or five people for year-round and seasonal positions.