After two years of social distancing the world is slowly returning to normal and that means kids all over the Shreveport-Bossier area are welcoming their friends back into their homes.
A local business is taking their creative idea to make the ultimate sleepover.
The Pitched Fort opened its doors in Dec. 2021, and is offering unique individualized teepees and tents for partygoers.
"The message that The Pitched Fort wants to send is getting back to the tribe and gathering and learning from each other and community," said Denise Schnelle, co-owner of The Pitched Fort.
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The Pitched Fort is a locally owned small business in Shreveport run by a mother-daughter pair who are not only working to build community once again through parties, but also community through small businesses.
Denise Schnelle and Miranda Ogletree are the owners and operators of The Pitched Fort.
Schnelle said she found the concept on the internet in late Oct. and pitched the idea to a couple of entrepreneurs, but nothing happened. In the end she decided to embark on this new venture on her own.
Ogletree was living out of state during this time and Schnelle said, "she'd come back and I was like, I'm doing something. Guess what I'm doing? Here it is."
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After Ogletree saw the creative designs she quickly jumped on board as co-owner of The Pitched Fort.
Now, The Pitched Fort is home to four tent options perfect for sleepovers or a picnic in the backyard.
"We have the A frame tents that have changeable material," Schnelle said. "We have the teepee tents that are only white. We have the double teepee so you can put two twin mattresses in it or just a bunch of pillows and blankets or whatever. And then we have a 16.5 foot bell tent that's outdoor."
Every option includes a warm inviting design that can be selected through an information sheet on The Pitched Fort website. Also, on this site you can decide the length of the rental and the upgrades.
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Schnelle and Ogletree are building an empire that they hope can help fellow women entrepreneurs in the Shreveport-Bossier area.
"We're just sprinkling ourselves everywhere, making so many friends and doing all this stuff," said Ogletree.
Schnelle worked in retail up until 2013, when she opened her first beauty business venture doing eyelashes. She said, "I've been servicing the public forever. So, why not do it on my terms instead of corporate."
Ogletree said that the problem people have who are in their 30's like her mother when she embarked on her first venture is they don't know how to scale up.
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Now Ogletree and Schnelle are trailblazing the idea of partnering with local entrepreneurs to create businesses that can work effectively through the efforts of Innovative Compass.
Innovative Compass is a startup management company owned by Ogletree.
"We've been working for about a year now and seeing how we failed together," said Ogletree. "I'm helping partner with people for about eight weeks to see how they work their companies and businesses and setting up systems, trying to do the same thing, copy and paste for Innovative Compass students so that these people can employ people of our community."
For more information on your next rental with The Pitched Fort check out www.thepitchedfort.com.
Makenzie Boucher is a reporter with the Shreveport Times. Contact her at email@example.com.