Wetumpka business rebounds after ‘Home Town Takeover’ show

Updated: May. 6, 2021 at 5:36 PM CDT
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WETUMPKA, Ala. (WSFA) - The HGTV hit “Home Town Takeover” is the gift that keeps on giving for Wetumpka. You may have seen the first episode spotlighting Wetumpka Sunday night. For one business owner, it’s been a game-changer in more ways than one.

“You should have seen it before,” said Tabatha Powe.

Powe sees the parallels of what’s happening in front of her business to what Tapp 18 used to look like - a work in progress, under construction. In short, a mess.

“Oh my Lord. They really did. They knew I needed help,” said Powe.

It was so bad, in fact, Powe was mere days from shutting it down and turning out the lights.

“I didn’t think that there was any future,” she recalled.

A lifelong dream went unfulfilled until Erin and Ben Napier came to town last year.

“You know, seconds later I heard someone behind me says, ‘We’re here.’ And it was Ben and Erin. I turned around and it was Ben and Erin,” said Powe.

The stars of the “Home Town Takeover” show did 12 renovations, including Powe’s Tabb 18 business, a boutique shop in downtown Wetumpka. With their creative touch the Napiers unveiled the finished product for the first time a few months ago.

“Oh gosh. The floors. The ceiling,” said Powe.

Powe marvels at the transformation from a dingy store to one that’s alive, vibrant, fresh and in Powe’s words, “relevant.”

But that’s only part of the story. Two days after the first episode Sunday night, the website for the business exploded.

“I said, ‘What do you mean the website’s gone?’ He said, ‘You’re sold out.’ I immediately started to scream,” Powe said.

Tabatha Powe was just days from turning out the lights at her boutique store before Home Town...
Tabatha Powe was just days from turning out the lights at her boutique store before Home Town Takeover came to Wetumpka.(Source: WSFA 12 News)

It skyrocketed to the point Powe needed help and needed it fast. Cellphone video shows friends coming to the rescue to package merchandise and even fellow merchants pitched in.

“I would not have made it through without them,” Powe said.

If you’re wondering about the story behind the number 18, Powe’s parents had 18 children and Powe herself was baby number 18.

The turnaround has been a reflection of what could be when one is on the brink but clothed with hope.

“Not being able to pay your bills on time to being able to pay your bills like six months ahead of time. That’s huge,” she said.

It’s the story of Powe, the comeback kid, thanks to a couple from Mississippi and a worldwide audience.

Powe says she’s gotten online sales from practically everywhere, including an inquiry from Kenya.

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