A joyful Spirit in Craig | CraigDailyPress.com

A joyful Spirit in Craig

Rob Gebhart

As a couple of cowboys walk past Spirit Pass in the Centennial Mall, store owner Christine Muzik calls out to them.

“I have whips!”

That’s a good example of how Muzik runs her store. She doesn’t work to make money; she does it to have fun and give Craig residents the opportunity to own something nice.

“People in Craig deserve something nice,” Muzik said.

Spirit Pass has been open for almost two years. During that time, Muzik has helped support 60 American Indian families, who produce much of the jewelry, pottery and other goods she sells.

When she calls her dealers, she doesn’t ask for specific merchandise. Rather, she asks which artists are in need of help, and she buys their work.

“We pick up somebody else that needs to be brought up so they can support their families,” Muzik said.

“The money needs to go back to the people who make this,” she said, gesturing to the vast array of merchandise behind the counter.

When asked what she does outside of work, Muzik replied that “outside of work” doesn’t exist. Her work days can last as long as 18 to 20 hours.

She said people have told her she could make more money elsewhere, but she wants it to stay in Craig, where her grandchildren live.

Moreover, she sees the business as a way of effecting change. Government won’t improve a person’s life, she maintained; one has to improve one’s own life.

“I want a change, and I’m not going to wait for someone else to do it,” Muzik said.

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