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Stories, things to do, and one of a kind tips from downtown Cape Girardeau.
#InternationalWomensDay: Cathy Thompson
#InternationalWomensDay: Cathy Thompson

This is an ongoing blog series to celebrate International Women’s Day! Each day this week, we will be highlighting a female business owner in #DowntownCG, hearing their stories and advice, and what it means to them to have a day set aside to recognize women around the globe. The questions asked are mostly the same, but the answers are as unique as the ladies themselves, so be sure to come back each day to gain even more wisdom from the women of Downtown.

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Cathy Thompson is the owner and of The Library located on Spanish. Follow her on social media!

What was your motivation for owning your own business?

It started when I was building and flipping homes in St. Louis. We owned a lot of property down in Cape, so when I would come down to maintain the properties I’d want to go out for a drink with my daughter, and there weren’t a lot of options. Then in 2008, the housing market took a dive and I thought, “I need to get into a business that isn’t affected by the stock market.” So bar #1 was a two-bedroom condo that was for sale and this (The Library) was the parking lot. So I thought I’m going to get into the bar business. I wanted to bring a little bit of St. Louis down to Cape, something more upbeat. Also, when I would go around to the bars, there weren’t a lot of older people, people my age. It was all college students, so that’s when we decided to open it earlier at 4 for people getting off work wanting a drink for happy hour.

What is your favorite part about owning your own business?

Not having a boss! I’m self-motivated and I’m a workaholic – I work about 18 hours a day. Bosses loved me because I worked so hard, but I wasn’t getting paid for the work I did. If I’m going to put the hours in, let’s reap the benefits!

What kept you motivated during hard times?

The people that come in here, and just how friendly the people of Cape are. I was a St. Louis girl almost 50 years of my life, and when you’re in the grocery store, passing each other in the aisles, nobody looks at you. In Cape, everyone’s like, “Hi, how are you?” It’s just a smaller, friendlier town. So it’s really the people that have kept me motivated.

What advice would you give to a woman looking to start her own business?

Find your niche. Find something that hasn’t already been done, and then do it. If you can find what you love to do, it’s not really work.

What in your opinion is a woman’s greatest super power?

Women are driven and we’re hard workers. We can do what we want because of the women that came before us. We’re no longer put in a box. We now wear so many hats! And whatever task we have at any given time, we have the drive to accomplish it.

So there’s this day that’s meant to celebrate and recognize women. What does that mean to you?

I guess I would have to go all the way back to my grandmother. I remember how hardworking she was and how many hats she wore. As women, we’re the moms, the helpers, the teachers. Women have worked so hard to get to where we’re at today.

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Check back tomorrow to learn about another incredible female business owner!

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