Over the course of an afternoon, I shot a number of photographs of Mark Lorenzoni, his family who also run the store and the employees. After getting to know Mark, I interviewed him and to put everything I shot together into a multi-media slideshow.
I asked Mark to talk to stuff he thought was not included in the C’Ville Weekly feature, which was awesome. Great work by Susan Sorenson.
Here are a couple of my favorite excepts from the article:
“I’d like to think we had a vision,” Mark said one afternoon, leaning against a wall in the chaotic, jam-packed office he shares with Cynthia, Audrey, Alec, and the shop’s three assistant managers. “Honestly, though, we never thought beyond surviving the first year. On the surface, it seems sort of reckless and stupid, but we were happy working at something that came naturally to us: people and running. Cynthia and I wanted to fill a niche with a passion we shared.”
Ragged Mountain employees always walk around the counter and hand customers their bags. (“It’s a people thing,” Mark explained.) And they must never—ever, ever—leave for the day without saying goodbye to Mark, which, said Cynthia, “is a family thing.”
“Listen,” Mark said when asked how he and Cynthia find enough hours in the day, “we sell shoes. We work hard at it, but we’ve been blessed to make a good living doing what we enjoy doing. And how lucky am I that I get to come to work every day with my best friend and my children? Cynthia and I started talking more than 30 years ago on that Michigan State bus, and we haven’t stopped since.”