BY KYLE BRAVIN
Owning a small business is more than just selling products for Janine Evanish.
The owner of Heaven and Earth Cafe and Gift Shop, 400 Wyoming Ave., Scranton, loves being part of the community.
“It’s so friendly, and I love interacting with the kind people of Scranton,” Evanish said. “The city is being transformed, and it is great to be a part of it.”
A Marlton, New Jersey, native, Evanish, 54, planned for a business career early on, earning a bachelor’s degree in business management from Rutgers University. After college, she later earned a master’s degree in business administration from West Virginia University, where she worked in strategic planning and budget analyzing. Evanish, who now lives in Moscow, then moved on to helping build her husband, John’s, dental practice, Horizon Dental Care, for 15 years.
Today, her cafe and gift shop share a building in downtown Scranton with Horizon. The Evanishes bought the property in 2014, and after working on the practice, she decided to go on her own and open up the faith-focused gift shop in 2017.
Faith remains very important to Evanish.
“My faith is part of my daily routine,” she said.
She added the cafe portion this past November and loves the support the Scranton community has given her businesses since the start.
“We’re still new so we need to continue to keep getting the word out,” Evanish said. “It’s very challenging to start a small business, so the support we have gotten so far has just been great.”
She understands that owning a small business is a rollercoaster and not every day will be easy, but she takes inspiration from her grandfathers, who owned vacuum cleaner and jewelry stores.
“I think it’s a challenge to own a small business, so before I died I really wanted to try it,” Evanish said.
Evanish has learned to be grateful and focus on the positives. When things get challenging, she tries “ to remember to go back to why you’re here.”
“I like to write down every step of progress and little bit of success we make every month,” she said. “It’s easy to focus on the failures, but it is important to acknowledge the positives.”
Heaven and Earth Cafe works with local bakers and restaurants to only provide food for customers that is locally grown. Evanish wants the cafe to offer a family-friendly environment where people can meet and reconnect over food or a drink, and she hopes to take advantage of the patio this summer. She looks at it as a unique space where customers can relax in the warm weather.
Evanish also has many ideas for events, noting she doesn’t want her shop “to be where our customers just buy a product and leave.”
For both the cafe and gift shop, Evanish wants to maintain a calm environment.
“We want (customers) to feel more at peace when they’re leaving here than when they came in,” she said.
Evanish looks forward to interacting with her customers every day. She likes talking with them and hearing their stories.
“The thing I like most about my job is that the work I do gives me energy,” Evanish said. “It is very rewarding talking with our customers. I like art and I like good books, and I just want to share that with them.”
Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org; 570-348-9127
Meet Janine Evanish
- At home: A Marlton, New Jersey, native, she now lives in Moscow with her husband, John. They have two sons, Jake, 27, and Evan, 24, and a daughter, Jemma, 17.
- At work: Owner of Heaven and Earth Cafe and Gift Shop, Scranton
- Inspirations: Both of her grandfathers, who owned small businesses
- Aspirations: To make the world a better place by spreading hope and joy and “to live out my life’s purpose and help people put their dreams into action,” she said.
- Diversions: Her faith, exercising, cooking, spending time with her family, painting and going on date nights with her husband
- Quote: “Some people regard discipline as a chore. For me, it is a kind of order that sets me free to fly.” — Julie Andrews
Caitlin Heaney West is the content editor for Access NEPA and oversees the Early Access blog in addition to working as a copy editor and staff writer for The Times-Tribune. An award-winning journalist, she is a summa cum laude graduate of Shippensburg University and also earned a master’s degree from Marywood University. Caitlin joined the Times-Shamrock family in 2009 and lives in Scranton. Contact: email@example.com; 570-348-9100 x5107; or @cheaneywest