Despite owner Alan Cohen's retirement in late August, Crazy Alan’s Emporium remains open.
The 20-year-old office supply store in Chapel Hill has two new owners.
The new co-owners and business partners, Michele Kowal and John Sullivan, are excited to execute their new vision for the store in the reopening. Kowal said they had been talking to Cohen about purchasing the store for almost two years.
“I have been going to Crazy Alan’s for the 12 years that I’ve lived in Chapel Hill,” Kowal said. “I’m a pen fanatic. I absolutely love pens — both John and I do.”
Sullivan said he and Kowal first met as teenagers, when they worked together at a store that Sullivan's mother owned.
"We were basically best friends in high school,” Sullivan said.
He said he and Kowal reunited about nine years ago when they both moved to Chapel Hill.
“We’re both pen fanatics, and so it made sense for us to kind of come full circle and work in a store together again,” Kowal said.
Sullivan said they will keep many aspects of the store the same. They will be making some changes though, with a focus on making the store accessible, including new local inventory and hosting community events. So far, they have made the front of the store more wheelchair and stroller friendly, Sullivan said.