The FISH CONNECTION opened for business as a 900 square foot aquarium shop in the spring of 1989. Owner, Susan Reuling, and local aquarium serviceman and store manager, Bruce Longwell (a.k.a. Fish Man) teamed up to create a quality fish shop for Southwest Colorado and the Four Corners . Bruce had previously been managing another pet store in Durango when he got the news that the owners were going to cease operations and close their doors. Susan had recently invested in a tropical fish breeding operation and was disappointed to find out that her favorite local shop was soon to be no longer. Together they began praying and brainstorming about what it would take to ensure a stable, solid retail establishment in the aquarium and pet trade. Quality would be number one! Knowledgeable, friendly service would be equally important, followed by selection and value. Starting small would have to be a reality, but careful, deliberate expansion would be a major goal.
Susan and Bruce also agreed that their new store should compliment and work closely with other existing establishments in Durango rather than try to compete directly against them. With this in mind, they focused their scope of operations initially on fresh and salt aquariums only, and later expanding to herptile care, small animals (hamsters & stuff), and also to ponds and water features. The FISH CONNECTION moved to their current location at 810 East College Drive during the summer of 2000. Being able to build up a brand new store in a brand new building was just what Durango needed, and The FISH CONNECTION set itself apart as one of the finest aquatics stores from Denver to Albuquerque, and everywhere in between. In April 2009, after 20 years of managing the store, Bruce bought The FISH CONNECTION from Susan, but nothing changed for its customers. Quality, Customer Service, New Displays and Ideas have all carried on, to the delight of hobbiests and kids of all ages.