North Fork woman looking to breathe new life into downtown area

NORTH FORK, Calif. (KFSN) -- Jennifer McMillan of North Fork has a big plan for their Downtown. She recently purchased a strip of buildings along road 222, the main passageway through town. It includes the K & B Auto Parts, two empty storefronts, and two houses. Her vision includes creating a country apparel store, a candy shop and eventually a diner.

"I don't even know how to explain it, it is a dream come true," she said. "Who gets to fix up a town how they want?"

McMillan came to North Fork five years ago after purchasing Old Town. She renovated it, transformed it into a venue and renamed it Bandit Town. After its success, she purchased some other locations in the area. Started a clothing business and then a bed and breakfast. She had her sights set on strip mall for some time.

"I had my shop across the street, so I did a lot of staring at it and I did a lot fantasizing back then about the other place, maybe renting part of it," said McMillan.

She finally decided to go for it. Jennifer asked Lois Betty and her husband Doug if she could purchase K and B Auto Parts along with the adjacent buildings. Their family owned it for two generations.

"Let's do it," said Betty. "Right off the get-go. When she came in, I told her I can't believe that you didn't ask earlier. What took you so long."

The goal now is to create a new place for locals and something that will keep tourists and travelers coming back for more. Jennifer plans on starting work as soon as possible and hopes to have the exteriors done by mid-summer.
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