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Giddy-up, get horse supplies

Boots N Spurs' owner Liz Bernitt opened her shop last month. Customers at the tack and saddle shop will be greeted by store dog, Ahmadaheus, a Papillion-bichon mix. <i>Jillian Dexheimer photo</i>

Seeing a niche that needed filling, UW-River Falls graduate Liz Bernitt took the horse by the reins and opened Boots N Spurs, 1025 S. Main Street, Suite 450, on March 23.

The store, located in the Southside Plaza by Dick's Fresh Market, sells new and used horse tack and saddles, halters, grooming supplies and more western riding items. The Owen native said that Boots N Spurs also buys gently used tack and saddles.

The store carries clothing such as jeans and t-shirts, as well as boots. Brands include: Corral, Double H and Ariat. There is also a selection of horse and dog gifts.

The 22-year-old Bernitt said that in the future, Boots N Spurs will carry horse feed and fancy dog collars. In addition the store has a stock of horse trailers for sale.

Boots N Spurs also offers custom items such as head stalls, breast plates and bridles.

Since graduating from UWRF, Bernitt, who owns quarter horses, has been busy setting up her store.

"In the last three years I decided that this is what I wanted to do when I graduated," she said.

When asked why she stayed in River Falls and set up her business here, Bernitt mentioned the close proximity of the Twin Cities and the love she feels for the town.

Bernitt, who graduated with an equine management degree, says she has been around horses her whole life and was looking to do something she loved.

Not everything has been sunny for Bernitt, who cites large amounts of paperwork and long hours as a downside to opening her own business.

But she's quick to say that she loves "talking to every customer individually."

When she's not at her store, Bernitt enjoys doing ranch work, roping and giving horse riding lessons.

Boots N Spurs is open Monday-Thursday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information search for "Boots N Spurs" on Facebook.

Jillian Dexheimer
Jillian Dexheimer has been a copy editor and reporter for the River Falls Journal since 2011. She previously worked for the River Falls Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Bureau. Dexheimer holds a sociology degree from UW-River Falls.
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