We had the good fortune of connecting with Kristi McDonald and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kristi, what do you attribute your success to?
The most important factor behind my success has been the outstanding support of the communities and businesses involved with Sip & Shop Texas. I have so much gratitude for the places that gave us a chance when we started. When we were first beginning, it seemed like a crazy idea – but it was a crazy idea that turned into more than we could have ever imagined. There is no way we would have gotten to where we are today without the love and support of the small businesses and people involved on the Sip & Shop Trail. It started as a weekend where a group of women went shopping and drank wine! – Now, we have our own “Sippin’ Scene – and many versions of the tour. We’ve been blessed to be involved in festivals, tours and several cities. We’re launching in Ft. Worth, as soon as we’re allowed to, after the pandemic regulations ease. I’m really looking forward to that. My goal with Sip & Shop Texas is to create a positive, fun & healthy community full of friends & neighbors who love to shop local, support small business and have a lot of fun! Due to these unprecedented times, our business is temporarily paused until Texas is back in business. Sadly, this rings true for many small businesses – but we’re all still connecting and we all still have that support from one another. I’m involved in many creative sessions to see how we can help everybody make it through this time. I think we’ll make it – and we’ll even come out with several new businesses, cities and platforms to explore. My go-to for always getting through tough times is having something to look forward to. When I was a classroom teacher, I would always look forward to our next holiday break. As the owner of a business that has paused because of the pandemic, I remind myself we will be back on the trail as soon as we can be. 2020 has definitely brought us ups and downs and rounds and rounds – but having a moment, a day, a trip or a pause that you can look forward to will keep you in forward motion. It’s really great that I love what I’m doing and everyone is so open to the idea. Ft. Worth is such a supportive community – as is all of DFW – and I cannot wait to get started here.

Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
All of our events and adventures are designed with soul, creativity and love – and designed just for you! If you’re looking for a girl’s getaway day, a weekend or a big event, we can create exactly what you need. Our goal at Sip & Shop Texas is to create a positive, fun & healthy community full of friends & neighbors who love to shop local, support small business and have a lot of fun! Sip & Shop Texas creates experiences as unique as Texas. You can relax and have a blast – and we’ll handle all the details. Our most popular experience is the East Texas Wine Trail. We have about 6 wineries that we work with on a very regular (weekly) basis, as well as little towns, art galleries, and unique shopping experiences. Pre-pandemic, we were operating tours weekly. Post pandemic, we will have tours from Tyler, as well as Ft. Worth. It’s been a challenging shut down time – but it has also helped us focus and create something great for the future. I am the most excited about launching a branch in Ft. Worth! It has been so fun exploring our options and working with the city to create the best experience for the guests. I’ve been working with Visit Ft. Worth and I’m very excited about the tour that we’ve put together as an experience for Ft. Worth to offer.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take her along what will soon be the Ft. Worth Sip and Shop Trail!! Lost Oaks Winery is such a great group of people. It’s so close to the city – and people don’t even realize it. They have a beautiful vineyard, a beautiful tasting room – and they even have portable pouches of wine. It’s like a capri sun pouch, but of wine! I also love Melt. It is a great ice cream shop who’s motto is “We believe treats can change your day and your day can change the world”. – I love them. It’s such a fun place and always so delicious. Wine and ice cream. That would be a good day.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
The Boss Talks Network! I have never encountered a group of more supportive women. Boss Talks is women entrepreneurs supporting women entrepreneurs and I love everything about it. Michelle MeKosh is the Director of the DFW chapter. I have loved meeting her and working with her to get things started in DFW. Women business owners face unique challenges that only other women will understand. Taking that leap to entrepreneurship or finding effective ways to grow your business can be daunting and overwhelming. Many organizations for women entrepreneurs lack the interactive learning experience and efforts to connect members with one another in a deeper more meaningful way. Boss Talks is so amazing in that way. You get to connect with real people that have been where you are and know how to get you to the next step. Every time I have gotten off the phone with one of the directors – they always ask “What do you need from me?” – and they’re always so happy to give and connect and direct. It has made a huge difference in my business and in my mindset as an entrepreneur.

Website: http://sipandshoptexas.com
Instagram: IG @ sipandshoptx
Facebook: facebook.com/sipandshoptexas

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