LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Despite the many layoffs and business closures during the pandemic, some people have been able to grow their business or open new ones.

Gina Payton, owner of Board & Brush Centennial Hills, has lived in the northwest valley for 27 years.

“Those of us in this area really want more entertainment that’s local, want more restaurants and things to do with our families that are a little bit closer to home,” she said.

After losing her job last year, Payton decided she was going to fully commit to transforming a space on Durango and El Capitan into the DIY creative studio Board & Brush.

“We host groups, birthday parties, bridal showers, bachelorette parties, things of that nature,” she explained.

Despite facing some setbacks, Payton stayed positive and is now focused on constructing the studio and hiring employees. She hopes to open shop by the end of next month or early March.

“As a small business owner, it’s kind of been our dream for many, many years, and we didn’t want to let this moment in time get in the way of that,” she said, “and I think there’s many other business owners that feel that way.”

Business owner Whitney Green co-founded the digital marketing group Melon Local a few months before the pandemic started.

“It was a really scary time, not knowing if we’d be able to find employees, not knowing if our clients would even stay on,” she shared.

Green says she was able to keep her clients and expand her team by looking at the situation as a new opportunity:

“I think a lot of people have been so down and out, and they’re focusing on the negative in the world. There is still a lot of positive to look forward to.”

Green thinks right now is a great time to try new things. “I mean why not?” she questions. “There’s so much to come out of all of this, and it’s kind of exciting.”

Melon Local is now expanding further and looking to fill three positions.