Jack’s General Store is located at 212 South Shore Road. (Google Maps)

Jack’s General Store is located at 212 South Shore Road. (Google Maps)

New general store opens in Lake Cowichan

Owners Kate and Ryan Thompson growing inventory

Kate and Ryan Thompson saw there was a need for a general grocery store on the southwest end of Lake Cowichan and decided to open one.

The couple, originally from Ontario, recently opened Jack’s General Store (which is named after Ryan’s father) at 212 South Shore Road because there wasn’t a lot available for grocery shoppers, both local and tourists, at that end of town and people had to travel to the middle of the community to get basic supplies.

“The community is happy to have us here, and we’re continuing to grow our inventory as we learn what our customers want us to carry,” said Ryan

“Business has been pretty steady since we opened in December, and we’re getting busier every day as more people realize that we are here. We’re still waiting for a new ice cream cooler and a new fridge to arrive.”


The couple has lived in a number of locations before deciding to settle in Lake Cowichan.

Ryan is a carpenter and the Thompsons moved to Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2016 to help rebuild the city after the major earthquake struck that year, destroying a lot of buildings.

In 2017, they moved to Victoria, but big city life wasn’t for them, so they moved to Langford and then Duncan before discovering Lake Cowichan during one the family’s frequent camping expeditions.

“We love life at the lake and began camping around here a lot before we decided to settle here,”Kate said, while holding her 14-month-old daughter Mae.

“Ryan finds a lot work around here as a carpenter and I work for an insurance company from home, and I’m currently on maternity leave so we figured this was the perfect time to open the general store. This is our first business and we’re pretty excited about it. The community has been very welcoming and we love being here.”


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