Only one month after opening her “dream business” in Evanston, Gabrielle Walker was diagnosed with COVID-19 and has temporarily closed her shop.
Now, friends and customers of hers at 4 Suns Fresh Juice are raising money to help pay staff salaries, vendors and utility companies.
4 Suns is located at 1906 Main St. Walker’s friend and business consultant, Rachel Cavalier, says Walker wanted to put her juice and smoothie shop in either the 2nd or 5th Ward, where the population is more diverse than in other parts of town. It ended up in the 2nd, filling what used to be a vacant storefront.
Cavalier says opening a shop like this has been the 43-year-old Walker’s “dream for 20 years.” Formerly the cafeteria manager at Chute Middle School, Walker’s family roots are in Haiti, so she also sells Haitian-themed items along with the juice and smoothies.
4 Suns closed Monday, Cavalier says, after Walker received a positive COVID test. Other employees will be tested as well. The hope is to reopen on Jan. 20, assuming the COVID tests allow that time frame to work.
Cavalier says the shop serves “plant-based wellness” as opposed to just food. As for the name, 4 Suns, it’s a tribute to owner Walker’s children. She has four sons.
The fund-raising effort is through GoFundMe.