New business spotlight on Fat Cat Vapor Shop

Chris Hughes opened Fat Cat Vapor Shop in December to provide people with what he feels is a better alternative to cigarettes and other tobacco products.

Located at 2655 Wilmont Drive, Montoursville, the business sells electronic cigarettes, a product which has become a fast-growing industry. Hughes, 48, a former cellphone technician and car wash manager, had never been in business for himself, but he liked the idea of one dealing with ecigs.

“I talked to other people in the industry,” he said. “I did a lot of research on it.”

By his own admission, Hughes had been a heavy cigarette smoker, before eventually switching to ecigs. For many people, giving up smoking is all but impossible.

“I’m interested in selling a product that could help them,” he said. “They (ecigs) are far less harmful than regular cigarettes.”

Ecigs come in a variety of shapes and sizes and operate on a battery. They produce a vapor when air moves across a heated coil that comes in contact with eliquid, the flavored base that contains nicotine.

Hughes is quick to note that nicotine is a stimulant and conceded that not smoking at all is the healthiest option.

Hughes sells various ecig accessories.

The shop also includes a lounge area and customers can sample products at the shop’s tester station.

“We wanted to make it warm and welcoming,” said Hughes’s wife, Tina Swisher. “This is a very community-based kind of business.”

Hughes likes the location of his shop just off the east end of the Golden Strip. As for the name Fat Cat, he said it suddenly popped into his brain one day while he was on the computer.

Photos of cats and high tech gadgets adorn the walls and interior of the inside of the shop.

“I think he (Chris) found something he can sink his teeth into,” his wife said. “You can see his passion.”

The phone number is 570-651-9114.