Beyond the Mountain Design Inc. publishes The Mountain Pages business directory and The Mountain Neighbor online resource. For nearly 30 years, their aim has always been “to connect mountain residents and visitors to local mountain business.”
Chelsey LaForge took over this iconic Nederland business in 2017, when the previous owner, Alice Lemoine, retired. LaForge had begun her career with the business when she moved to Nederland from Asheville, North Carolina, in 2014.
LaForge tells The Mountain-Ear, “In Asheville, I worked in wholesale sales for a really fun company called AFG Distribution. Their customers were primarily gift shop and smoke shop owners throughout the nation. I enjoyed connecting with my customers and traveling often for industry trade shows.
“Asheville has a strong sense of community with a major focus on supporting local businesses and shopping small. I learned the importance of this mindset in Asheville while simultaneously falling in love with business-to-business work. Looking back, it’s amazing how my life and experiences have lead to owning and operating The Mountain Pages/ The Mountain Neighbor for the community that I so deeply love. I truly feel it was meant to be!
The Mountain Pages business directory is released in hard copy, and comes out three times a year: Summer/Fall, Winter, and Spring. LaForge emphasizes that “It’s free for every business to have one plain black listing, but of course, we have plenty of upgrade options available to help your business stand out and grow!”
She adds that “The purpose of The Mountain Pages is to unite our community throughout the Peak to Peak region into one supportive ‘family of mountain people,’ thereby enhancing the creative, social, spiritual and economical benefits that we share together. We are a mountain-focused publication helping businesses succeed since 1993! Our publication lands directly in the mailbox of our readers (free to every resident through the Peak to Peak).”
The Mountain Neighbor, which used to be issued in hard copy, is now completely online. It features “unlimited classifieds updated daily, coupons, local events, business directory, humor, games, local weather, video and feature articles. It is also sized for iPhones and mobile devices. The Mountain Neighbor is publicized through our monthly e-mail newsletter and our social media outlets. You can view The Mountain Neighbor by visiting www.themountainneighbor.com.”
Clearly, LaForge feels a close connection with her adopted community. She tells us that “My absolute favorite part of my job is helping a local business get noticed, then witnessing their business grow. There truly is no better feeling! I love when readers tell me that The Mountain Pages/The Mountain Neighbor made their life so much easier (which they do very often). Bringing such an important resource to our locals, and helping people in general, makes me feel like I am serving my life’s purpose.”
Assisting her life’s purpose is design and layout expert Jasmine George. LaForge herself handles publishing, editing, and customer service. LaForge adds, “We are a 100% female-owned & operated business.”
But life isn’t all work for LaForge. She tells The Mountain-Ear, “I have two rescue dogs (Reba & Sally) and two rescue cats (Rudie & Smokey). In my free time I like to: roller skate, play disc golf with my husband, take road trips, and see live music!” Sounds like she fits right into our pet-loving and recreation-oriented mountain community.
LaForge claims she owes much her success to Alice Lemoine, who helped her through the rigors of the transfer of the business. “Alice taught me how to manage and run this business. Alice … empowered me to do my own books, payroll, tax reporting & filing, etc.… Alice gave me the confidence that I needed to start as a new & independent business owner and I can never thank her enough!”
Serving the entire Peak to Peak region, The Mountain Pages is mailed to every boxholder in the area, including Nederland, Rollinsville, Pinecliffe, Central City, Black Hawk, Idaho Springs, Evergreen, Dumont, Silver Plume, Empire, Georgetown, Ward, Jamestown, and the mountain residents of Boulder & Golden.
As LaForge puts it, “We are focused on & dedicated to our mountain community! When readers check The Mountain Neighbor online, or open their latest copy of The Mountain Pages business directory, they know that they are in direct contact with nearby mountain businesses they can rely on.”
Here’s to another 30 years!
To find out more about The Mountain Pages and Mountain Neighbor, check out themountainpages.com/
Sponsored by the Town of Nederland, with funds from the American Rescue Plan Act.