Like many businesses, Lasered From The Heart in Nisswa experienced setbacks because of the COVID-19 outbreak. In this case, in May the business decided to close its Main Street storefront and open retail sales from its second location across from Ye Olde Pickle Factory.

However, they are still going strong and offering all the items and services people depend on.

“Of course, COVID kind of hit and we were renting two places in Nisswa,” said owner Tammy Grater. “We had a shop in Nisswa, but now we've moved and we have one location.”

The business has had shop space in Nisswa for just over a year. It opened May 18, 2019, and had a grand opening in June 2019. The move allows the business to operate at a lower cost during this time of widespread economic challenge. As a result, it is still able to offer the same services and products that have made the business popular.

“Nisswa's been a great location. We really took off,” Grater said. “People were loving that they could come in and get things customized and personalized. We were doing signs and a lot of people like the tumblers because they can put anything they wanted on them.”

The shop laser etches wood, glass, stainless steel, leather, mirrors, acrylic, glass and some other materials, often while the customer waits. The designs and personalized messages are virtually unlimited and customizable for personalized gifts, wedding favors and special occasions.

Of course, like everyone else, they are making adjustments.

“We've had to work on our online presence a lot more on the website with just not knowing what's going to be happening again,” Grater said. "Whether there's that second wave coming through or not. Being off Main Street has affected us a bit by not having a lot of walk-in traffic, but people who found us last year have been finding us this year.”

The company also has been paying more attention to its wholesale products. They not only sell small quantities of personalized items, but also larger quantities of promotional items to businesses like restaurants, resorts, event venues and any who want promotional material. They even make COVID-19 barriers for checkout areas.

“I think a big thing we've been focusing on lately has been business and wholesale, as well as getting out to let businesses know about our products and wholesale prices,” Grater said.

In a year's time, Lasered From The Heart has been able to add many new custom products to the product line.

“We're always doing different things like signs and license plates,” Grater said. “We're always trying to come up with something different and unique. That's the great thing about Nisswa, all the great shops with unique items.”

Among their most popular items have been Minnesota cribbage boards and personalized insulated metal tumblers.

Not to be deterred by COVID-19, Lasered From The Heart turned its machines toward creating face mask holders, known as ear savers by some, for donation to St. Joseph's Medical Center in Brainerd and the medical community.

Lasered From The Heart is located on City Hall Street and is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Travis Grimler may be reached at 218-855-5853 or travis.grimler@pineandlakes.com. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/@PEJ_Travis.