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D&S Stay & Play, LLC - The Bear Paw Cabin

close view of front of house
187 Mae West Road
Confluence, PA
Business start-up
Total Project Cost
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When you’re dealing with businesses, if you have anybody that returns your calls promptly, that’s a big plus.  The Progress Fund seems like they’re more motivated for [Laurel Highlands], and motivated for entrepreneurs.

- Don Kruse, co-owner, The Bear Paw Cabin and D&S Stay and Play


Firing up the Kruse’s Plain and Fancy Food truck for fairs and festivals added fun and income to Sharon and Don Kruse’s retirement.  When the COVID-19 pandemic nixed such gatherings, they looked for other opportunities.  Their daughter, Pam, had purchased several vacation rental houses, and alerted her parents to a cute cottage on nine wooded acres.  Don and Sharon stood on the back porch, listening to the stream burble past the mountain laurel and rhododendron, and calculating the potential earnings.  “The day that we looked at it,” says Don, “we signed an agreement on it.”


Pam Kruse had tapped from The Progress Fund to finance her entrepreneurial endeavors, and her parents looked no further, borrowing $200,000 toward the purchase of The Bear Paw.


Imagine pulling in and seeing a pile of split logs by the fire pit.  Turn the key and note the popcorn maker and ready sack of kernels.  Then stroll the path while the kids hit the playground.  That’s how The Bear Paw pulls you into the embrace of the Laurel Highlands’ many charms, from Fallingwater to Ohiopyle.  “People come from all over the world for that area,” says Sharon.  “There’s just so much to do up there that I see the Laurel Highlands getting better and better.”

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