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Business

Personal reflections

T Marie Portraits and Photo Booth offers the special touch

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader
SWISHER– What started as a hobby for Swisher resident Tracy Griffin has turned into not just a career, but a reflection of her passion and personality.
Griffin is the owner and chief photographer of T Marie Portraits and Photo Booth.
About eight years ago, Griffin and her family were hiking through Palisades Park on a nice fall afternoon, and she happened to have a camera with her. She took photos of her children to commemorate the day.

The Doctors are in (Tiffin)

Pet Health Center of Tiffin is open and ready to care for your furry folks

TIFFIN— Pets are often more than just furry or feathered friends; to many, they’re family.
For decades people took their pets to the Oxford Veterinary Clinic in Oxford, where veterinarians such as Dr. Bill Rugger, Dr. Kristi Anderson, Dr. Jonelle Hankner, Dr. Susan Kula (Jacobson) and Dr. Nicole Kogan cared for a variety of creatures, both large and small. The Oxford clinic is now history, replaced by a new, state-of-the-art facility on the west side of Tiffin.

New look for Solon Legion

New windows, flooring caps year of big improvements

SOLON– Ask and ye shall receive.
It was time for some updates at the Solon American Legion, and thanks to an outpouring of support from a variety of sources, Stinocher Post 460 underwent a facelift in 2015.
“If you haven’t been in this Legion in the last two or three months, you’re in for a big surprise,” said Legion Finance Officer Curt Phillips. “There’ve been an awful lot of improvements done here within the last year.”

Just there to help

Rural Health and Safety Clinic faces many challenges

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader

HILLS— President Ronald Reagan is quoted as saying, “The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’”
For four years, Roger Stutsman and Kelley Donham have been trying to convince farmers they are not from the government, and they truly are there to help.

Dipping their toes in the water

Cedar River Tank Tour owners stays afloat

“Somethin’ ‘bout a boat
Sittin’ on the sea
Out there in the wind
Floatin’ on the free
Take you ‘round the world
Bring you back home
Gives a man hope…”
- Jimmy Buffett’s “Somethin’ ‘bout a boat.”
SOLON– Maybe the song should be, “Somethin’ ‘bout a stock tank.”
Several years ago, Cedar River Tank Tours started out as a conversation over cocktails in a garage. It evolved into a local tourism business based in Solon, growing in patrons and popularity.

A scoop of kindness

At Heyn’s Ice Cream shop in North Liberty, owner Peggy Cullivan reflects on what Heyn’s means to her

NORTH LIBERTY– The history of the business is as follows: The Iowa City location of Heyn’s Ice Cream started in 1981, originally as a second location of Dane’s Dairy run by Paul Heyn. Soon after, Dane’s Dairy decided to give ownership of the store to Heyn, who renamed it Heyn’s Ice Cream. Peggy Cullivan began working at the shop when she was 14 years old, became manager at age 19, and inherited the store from Heyn in 2007. Earlier this summer, she opened a new location at 25 E. Cherry St. in North Liberty.
Those are the facts. But there is more to the story:

Buona sera, Solon

New restaurant brings Italy to Main Street

SOLON– There are many things to love about Italy: its wine, its warm people, its masterful historic artists, bold history and ancient architecture.
Its food.
The Red Vespa Italian Restaurant now brings some of those fine Italian qualities to the heart of downtown Solon.
Aziz and Angie Longou are the couple behind the venture, the long-anticipated eatery that opened Aug. 25. Aziz has many years of experience as a chef and restaurateur in the Corridor area.
“I started cooking in 1978, and I think I did a good job,” said Aziz.

A farm for beer lovers

Buck Creek Hops to sell hops to breweries all over the Midwest

SOLON– The landscape of Solon is changing. With new bars and restaurants popping up in Solon’s downtown area, including Big Grove Brewery, Salt Fork Kitchen, Eastwood’s and Red Vespa, more people are being drawn to visit. One new business, Buck Creek Hops, aims to help maintain Solon’s growth as a culinary and craft beer destination.

Stone walled

...floors and counters, too, at L&C Marble Granite Supply

NORTH LIBERTY– Cody Chen is used to serving up hot, delicious Chinese take-out cuisine.
Now, he and a family member can also create a beautiful kitchen counter on which to serve it.
Cody, owner of Yang Chow Wok, and his cousin, Lam Chen, have established a second business in the North Liberty area, L&C Marble Granite Supply.
Lam learned the trade of cutting and installing beautiful stone– primarily marble and granite– in Hong Kong, where Lam’s family has a long-established business in the industry.

Corridor Home Services

affordable for everyone

SOLON– “It’s a blessing to be of service to other people.”
That’s how Tom Dunn reflects on the business he recently started in the Corridor.

The barber is back!

Connie Semotan returns to Shueyville after 10 years

SHUEYVILLE– When Connie Semotan reopened her Shueyville barber shop in March, a lot of her clients were walk-ins, and many would tell her stories about a great gal that used to cut hair at that very same location years ago.
When she heard these stories, Semotan would smile and laugh as her customers would slowly realize that that same great gal was standing right in front of them.
“I get all kinds of people who just come in and ask, ‘are you my Connie?’” Semotan said. “The response has just been so fun.”

Slicing things up in downtown Solon

Eastwood’s Sports Bar moves to Main Street; D&D Pizza finds a home inside Sam’s Main Street Market

SOLON– Two Solon staples are making a switch.
Several months ago, D&D Pizza and Cafe owner Sam Lensing made the decision to move his restaurant across the street into his grocery store, Sam’s Main Street Market.
The only unanswered question was what to do with the empty building.
That’s where Leo Eastwood, of Eastwood’s Sports Bar, came in.
Eastwood learned earlier in the year that he was being evicted from his previous location on Haganman Lane due to the building being sold, leaving him with a big problem and little time to find a solution.