Shelly Heppner with one of her stills. (Submitted photo)

Parksville distiller to give out free hand sanitizer to residents

‘OK, this is the opportunity to contribute’

Shelly Heppner of Bespoke Spirits House in Parksville is busy running a one-woman show, but wanted to find time to make some free hand sanitizer for her community.

Starting on Wednesday, April 29, Heppner will have her front door open with a table out front, ready to fill up hand sanitizer bottles. She will keep it going weekly from Wednesday to Friday, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. She’s asking people to bring their own 100 ml bottles (the amount she is giving out per person, per day). She will also have spray sanitizer in bottles for sale.

“I’ll have my table with my door, with my door open, so they’re not actually coming in,” she said. “I think all of the industry has really turned around and went, ‘OK, this is the opportunity to contribute.’”

Available vodka will be sold at an introductory price of $32 — made with B.C. wheat.

READ MORE: Heppner to open distillery and tasting room in Parksville

Heppner had planned to officially open up shop on April 1 — a date that is now postponed due to COVID-19. Heppner thought this could be something she could do in the meantime, both to give back and get some of her product out.

“It’s something that a lot of the distilleries are doing, it’s kind of a pivot in the situation,” she said. “Because we have the ability to make a neutral grain spirit, the ethanol is what is required for hand sanitizer.”

The hand sanitizer is limited and can be picked up at 425 E. Stanford Ave. If people want to pay a by-donation amount, Heppner said that it’s appreciated and would go towards her making more. For more information, email

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