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COVID-19 pivot: Alberta barber opens shop in ‘the world’s largest man cave’


Coming up with new ways to carry on is something a lot of Canadian business people have been struggling with during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now, a barber in southern Alberta has accomplished something she believes is a first for Canada: setting up shop in a museum in the town of High River.

“It’s a perfect place for a barbershop,” Dee Green said. “I’m cutting hair in the world’s largest man cave.”

Getting a haircut on Wednesday, Green’s longtime client Barry Warnica noted that there’s definitely a lot to check out in the Call of the West Museum, which is full of items and memorabilia related to the area’s Prairie heritage.

Read more: Old Calgary landmark becoming new attraction in High River

“I like the antique cars and equipment, and all the old tractors in the back,” Warnica said.

The founder and operator of the museum, Al Millard, said he was eager to welcome Green’s Pioneer Barber Shoppe to the facility.

“It cuts her rent down and it helps us,” Millard said. “It’s a huge win-win situation.”

After struggling to survive through COVID-19 restrictions, Green is grateful for the chance to try a new direction.

“It’s a little bit of good news in a really tough year,” she said.

Read more: High River on edge as COVID-19 cases soar

Restrictions during the pandemic have meant she’s had to shut down her shop for about half of the past year.

“I downsized and I let my staff go,” Green said. “And then when I was looking for a spot just big enough for me, this happened.”

No stranger to disaster, Green was also forced to scramble when the huge 2013 flood hit High River.

Read more: High River almost rebuilt after Alberta flood in June 2013

“I lost everything except for my chair and my pole,” Green said.

Those items are now with Green in her corner of the museum as she carries on, no matter what comes her way.

“How could you do better than this?” Green said, before adding with a laugh that the new setup “is perfect, and I didn’t have to do all the work.”