After more than 30 years, Trina Binkley, owner of Trina’s Dog Grooming in St. Maries, will pass the clippers to new ownership.

Mike and Katherine Darlington, who recently moved from New Plymouth, ID, will take over.

“It felt like it was the right time to pass the clippers,” Ms. Binkley said. “I’m looking forward to spending time with my grandkids and having a summer off for the first time in 30 years.”

Ms. Binkley does not recall exactly when she started the home-business that grew to require its own space in the blue cottage tucked away on sixth street.

“My youngest daughter was about five and she’s 38 now,” Ms. Binkley said.

Ms. Binkley is married to Gene Binkley. They have two grown daughters; Valerie and Sally who live in

Moscow and Silverton. Mr. and Ms. Binkley plan to stay in St. Maries.

Ms. Binkley said she can’t even estimate how many dogs she’s groomed over the years.

“Let people do the math. We groom 50-plus dogs a week in the summer time,” she said.

While most customers get more standard cuts, she said there a few that get more stylish hairdos.

“We’ve done a few mohawks and lion clips other than that they’re pretty straightforward,” she said.

Customer Fred Beard, who brought in his chihuahua-pomeranian mix, named Pita, said he has always been happy with the results.

Ms. Binkley said customers will be in good hands with new owner-groomer Ms. Darlington.

“I think she’s quite qualified and doing a good job already,” Ms. Binkley said.

Ms. Darlington has five years of dog-grooming experience and said she loves grooming animals.

“Bathing a dog is soothing and relaxing and very rewarding,” she said. “When they’re done, they feel like a brand-new puppy.”

Mr. and Mrs. Darlington bought the business, which will be renamed Barks and Bubbles, once they decided to call St. Maries home.

“He fell in love with the area, the climate and the environment,” Ms. Darlington said. “We also have family that bought property here.”

The couple, who have two grown children living in Montana, have moved extensively as a result Mr. Darlington’s 18-plus year career as a conductor an engineer. He now works for the St. Maries Railroad.

Aside from the name change, Ms. Darlington said they may implement weekend hours and include a do-it-yourself dog-wash. A new sign will go up as well.

Most of all they want to accommodate customers as best as possible.

“We’ve got flexible hours,” Ms. Darlington said. “Even if they need a Saturday, we can see about it. We’re excited to serve the community and get their dogs clean one at a time.”

Ms. Binkley expressed her gratitude to all her customers.

“I’d like to thank the community for being so good to me and loyal. I hope they’ll do the same for Katherine,” she said. “Some feel like part of the family and I’ll miss everybody, but I’ll see them around town.”

To schedule a grooming appointment with Barks and Bubbles, 116 South Sixth Street, call 208-245-5755.

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