ELKINS - Workers at the Randolph County Sheltered Workshop were excited recently when Jeff Smith, co-owner of Leland's Lures, stopped by the Elkins shop to visit. Many Leland's Lures products are packaged in Elkins at Seneca Designs.
Seneca Designs, located in the Elkins Industrial Park, provides vocational and rehabilitation service for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive employment.
"We train people - that is the core of our business," Mike Turner, executive director of Seneca Designs said. "Our mission is to train adults with disabilities. Our goal is to move our employees into competitive employment in the community."
The Inter-Mountain photo by Beth Christian Broschart
Members of the Randolph County Sheltered Workshop package items for Leland’s Lures, including Trout Magnet.
A big part of that employment comes from Leland's Lures.
"We sell approximately 15 million lures each year," Smith said. "Hundreds of thousands of those are packaged right here in Elkins by this group. These guys do a fantastic job. They help us by doing the packaging and we give them meaningful work. It is a win-win situation."
Smith said he enjoyed visiting with the workers. Each one received a Trout Magnet T-shirt while sharing the day with Smith.
"This is a fun group to be around," Smith said. "It is great to meet them - everyone is doing such a great job. This provides meaningful work for everyone, and everyone takes their job seriously."
Smith said the employees at Seneca Designs package individual lures as well as kits that contain from seven up to 100 pieces. Items are shipped from the Elkins location all over the United States.
"It's amazing what a great job they do with the detail," Smith said. "They work hard and do a great job for Leland's Lures. They are a huge part of our company."
Seneca Designs employee Chandra Washington said the group has approximately 30 employees who work about five hours a day.
"We plan to grow and offer more lures for crappie fishing," Smith said. "We are also working with Duck Commander, and may offer a new product line with their endorsement in the near future."
Smith said Leland's Lures and Trout Magnet products are available at WalMart, Bass Pro Shop, Cabela's and Kmart.
Contact Beth Christian Broschart by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at ITM_Broschart.