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Month: December 2016

Whitetail Farms Farm Fresh Market expands on reputation

There is something to be said for offering quality products and service. It’s a simple formula for success that, unfortunately, not all businesses follow. Greg and Karen Saltzman, owners of Whitetail Farms Farm Fresh Market have made that simple philosophy the backbone of their business. In the 18 months they have been open in Olivet, that philosophy has paid tremendous dividends. Known throughout mid-Michigan for its fresh, hand-carved meats, Whitetail Farms has seen its reputation grow in the past year. So much so, Greg and Karen are looking to expand their fresh meat service case in 2017. “We’re going to be adding a lot more variety,” Karen said. It’s hard to imagine Whitetail Farms could expand on its vast variety of fresh meat. The market already features an assortment of USDA Choice beef, pork, chicken, smoked meats, sausages and fresh ground burger. In addition to the expansion of its fresh meat, Whitetail Farms is adding a line of prepared hot food and expanding its deli. Greg said he would also like to offer catering services by spring of 2017. He already offers special order pulled pork, smoked brisket, smoked turkey and meat and cheese deli trays. Greg said the Christmas season proved to be very successful for Whitetail Farms’ selection of special order meats. Of course, the community support has been exceptional since the Saltzmans opened their business in...

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MOO-ville and Route 66 Business District take world record

By Adam Droscha Staff Writer Underdog stories are only underdog stories when victory comes at the end. For Route 66 Business District, MOO-ville, and the whole town of Nashville the quest to set the record for the world’s longest ice cream sundae is an underdog story. This story is filled with competition, community participation, and a simple vision. In May of 2015 Route 66 Business District, in collaboration with MOO-ville Creamery, attempted to set the Guinness world record for the longest ice cream sundae. The idea was simple enough. Use a valuable community resource to give Nashville Michigan a...

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Madre Mexican Restaurant moves to new location

By Adam Droscha Staff Writer Bobby, Chase, and Kathy opened a small, cozy Mexican restaurant this summer. It was sort of a surprise to all of them. Bobby didn’t think that opening a restaurant would be part of his retirement plans. Now, just a few months into the venture, the restaurant has expanded and moved closer to the busy excitement of downtown Eaton Rapids. Madre’s previous location wasn’t far from the new one. Really the biggest difference with the move is the size of the restaurant. The three owners knew that the cramped building located at 400 S. Main Street, which has always struggled to hold tenants, would be a challenge. There was minimal space for everything, whether it was the kitchen, seating area, or counter space. But the new building, the former location of the Eaton Rapids Coffee Company, is spacious and expanded. On top of already having a practically doubled floor space, the new Madre location now includes the back half of the building, which was not originally offered for other businesses that occupied the space. Chase and Bobby knocked out the back wall, so the restaurant enjoys a much larger kitchen space. The larger kitchen allowed Madre to expand its menu and provide a more thorough and relaxed eating experience. Kathy has been pleasantly surprised by the bump in traffic at the restaurant. The more central...

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The family legacy of Jerry’s Barbershop

By Adam Droscha Staff Writer Anyone who is in the same line of work as his or her great-grandparent knows that there is a certain satisfaction that comes with telling the story of family tradition. Jerry’s Barbershop in downtown Charlotte is a reminder of one family’s craft and perseverance through several generations. Mark Hughes, the current owner of Jerry’s, is a fourth generation barber in his family. His great-grandfather was a barber, as was his grandfather, his father, his sister, and his son-in-law Rece, who also works at Jerry’s. Mark’s grandfather owned the barbershop when it was called Pierce’s, and Mark still has customers come in who remember his grandfather. Jerry, Mark’s father and namesake of the current shop, started working with his father-in-law in 1954 and bought the business in 59. Jerry was still trimming hair into his 80s. Mark reflected on the simplicity, yet enduring pride of his family’s story. He and his father did not intend to be barbers. In their own youths they briefly pursued different lines of work until they accepted the relevance and readiness of the family business. Jerry had intended to work in construction, even on large structures like the Mackinac Bridge. Mark began working at the barbershop when he was 19, briefly looked at other life possibilities and realized the great opportunity to stay in a supportive and recognizable community. His...

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The Dolson to build upon 32-year tradition established by The Gavel

Tom and Sherie Hewitt could sense it was time for a change. Their restaurant — The Gavel — had been a Charlotte destination for 32 years, but they knew community members have been yearning for something fresh and new. Reinventing their downtown Charlotte establishment, however, would require a little more youth and enthusiasm. Enter in Jason and Darryl Vanderstelt, Charlotte natives and owners of Dutch Brothers Development. The two learned of Tom’s desire to retire from the restaurant business and had long since been intrigued by the potential of his building. Knowing many people in the restaurant industry through...

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