I happened to be strolling through the farmers market a few weeks back. I came across quite the interesting sign in front of the store called The Coyote Club, located on the Plaza. It’s not often a store makes a first impression with such alluring humor.
“Our shirts are made by real coyotes! *Our signs are made by terrible liars!*”
I smiled and appreciated such effort, intrigued. I was lured. These days in society we tend to forget to stop, reflect, and take it all in. We zoom on by within a fast-paced reality we call our lives. Often, we neglect all the little things in life that count. This sign, humorous and humble, says a lot about the store and its employees. These people took that extra time out of their day to throw some humor into yours. Why wouldn’t they be a gem to shop with, right?
I had the privilege to take the extra step to speak with the manager Leslie Tafoya, and assistant manager Jaclyn Bermudez. Store owners Elaine and John Justice were not in while I was there. As I entered the store, they took notice of me immediately and were very welcoming. With friendly conversation, laughter, and a whole lot of smiles, was able to ask them a few questions.
The Coyote Club was established in 1990.
“We’ve been open 25 years,” Tafoya said.
Mrs. Leslie Tafoya is your typical Taoseña. Born and raised in Taos. I enjoyed listening to her speak fondly of the generations in her family. “I was born and raised here, I have my husband, and my sons, and my grandson Logan.”
I suppose it makes it heartfelt to see that the center of town (the heart of our town) contains everyday people like us. They are part of who we are, and our community, and that’s what makes the plaza interesting. The historical value is fruitful.
Bermudez, born and raised in Taos as well, made me feel at ease in a store that many of us assume is for tourists.
“I remember when this was the town. I’d come as a little girl to get my haircut, and then eat a burger with my mom; over there where Rexel used to be,” Tafoya reminisced. Quite the fond memory, if you ask me.
I asked Tafoya and Bermudez how the store stays unique.
“We stay unique because Elaine and John are very particular about what they carry. They won’t carry anything someone else has. They like to be different, and they’re great at picking their designs and styles.”
I asked Mrs. Bermudez the big question: “What’s the inspiration behind the sign?”
She laughed, made a joke about it, and pure kindness showed as they laughed about it with one another. “If I show humor, then people will see were not so serious and standoffish. I’m trying to attract the younger customers, and still be funny enough for the older customers to get it.” My opinion: I think it’s great, because a store’s first impression is always what sets the tone of your shopping experience.
I wanted to find out how in this modern-day setting, they stay true to their locals and I heard lovely responses that made me genuinely happy:
“We promote other locals.”
“We put back into the community.”
“Even though It may come straight out of our pockets, nothing feels better than to know you’re making a difference.”
“My son is a Taos Tiger, and when it comes to fundraising, the plaza buys most of your stuff.”
Personally, I’ve seen this ethic in action, because I too have had to fundraise, and Taos Plaza was most supportive!
Both Bermudez and Tafoya were mutual about their customer service attitude, and strongly believed, “Customer service is important to any business. Just a simple smile can change someone’s day.”
It seems to me, the Coyote Club is worth the visit. Not to mention the reasonable prices and great deals!
Products they carry include:
* Unique and unusual backpacks/purses (Who doesn’t like to be different?) ranging from $15.99-$24.99.
* Comfy tees and sweatshirts ranging from: Shirts $8.99-$12.99 Crew necks and Hoodies $16.99-$23.99.
* My ultimate favorite, their coffee mugs, $9.99.
I recently needed coffee cups and couldn’t find them anywhere sold separately, in town — until the day I stumbled upon the Coyote Club! I stocked up.
I’d like to conclude by saying:
With tons of great gift ideas, I found many perfect stocking stuffers, and much more. If you’re stuck and don’t know what to get that special spouse, kiddo, parent, sibling, or grandparent, try checking out the Coyote Club. You might just find what you’re looking for.