Hold Fast Brewing
Hold Fast Brewing debuted Aug. 9 as the ninth brewery in operation in the Queen City. Previously home to Fire Station No. 1, the roughly 9,500-square-foot building at 235 N. Kimbrough Ave. began undergoing renovations for the venture last year. The family business led by sisters Carol and Susan McLeod has four flagship beers, according to its website: The Experience Pale Ale, Boondock Brown Ale, Brewery Dream Cream and Highlander Wheat. Opening the brewery, which employs 13, represents a “five-year dream in the making,” Susan McLeod said. Stinson Building Co. served as general contractor for the renovation work designed by Hood-Rich Inc. An outdoor patio was built in the plans with a regularly rotating roster of live music and food trucks on-site, Carol McLeod said. Tinga Tacos, London Calling and Jamaican Patty Co. are among those on the brewery food truck schedule. Startup costs and lease terms with building owner Jack Stinson were undisclosed.
Hours: 3-9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, noon-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Sunday
Phone: (417) 761-2318
Nest Interiors LLC
After 17 months at 5221 N. 17th St. in Ozark, Nest Interiors LLC moved Aug. 13 to 101 W. Church St., just off the town square. Co-owners Chelsee Sowder and Natasha Stanley started the company in March 2018, offering home decor, as well as design and home staging services. Sowder said the new 1,500-square-foot space was a $30,000 investment to infill and lease. Terms of the lease were undisclosed. The duo started selling decor in 2015 as a hobby on the weekends, when they’d set up booths at places like Relics Antique Mall. That turned into monthly pop-up shops in 2017, when they formed their first limited liability company. They now employ 10 part-time staff members on-call to assist with the store and staging services. Home decor, such as picture frames, tabletop decor, candles and cups, are typically priced between $15 and $20, Sowder says. Higher priced items include dining tables, at $450 to $1,200.
Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Saturday
Phone: (417) 485-4044
Smart Choice Communications LLC
Five years after opening a Springfield office, New York City-based Smart Choice Communications LLC relocated April 26 to a new Queen City home at 4136 S. Scenic Ave., Ste. 100. The company provides telecommunication technology solutions for voice, data and security networks, including design, installation and implementation, according to its website. Support also is provided 24/7. Smart Choice currently employs 19 at its 5,100-square-foot Springfield office, formerly occupied by Metro Marketing Inc., said Vanessa Caro, branding and communications coordinator. It had operated at 1570 E. Battlefield Road, Ste. F. She said the company, founded in 1998, is on a seven-year lease for an undisclosed rate with 4136 S. Scenic LLC. Relocation costs were undisclosed. Jarrett Wolfe is Smart Choice’s CEO in New York, and Caro said Chris Rozier was hired as the Springfield office manager. Rozier is also a co-owner of Able Coffee and Provisions LLC and a former hotel manager with O’Reilly Hospitality Management LLC.
Hours: 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday
Phone: (212) 660-7341
Visionhealth Eye Center in Republic moved; Gettin’ Basted expanded north to Springfield; and the second Springfield facility for Blue Iguana Car Wash opened.
Jennifer Charleston, a 20-year veteran of the Springfield Police Department and the only female lieutenant in the department, talks with SBJ’s Christine Temple about her career in law enforcement and her new position in the department as a liaison to the LGBTQ+ community.
Moving from physical meetings to digital meetings can feel like a barrier, but Mackenzie Scherer, an independent technology business consultant, says it can be an opportunity. Scherer says that with good moderation, a digital meeting experience can make people feel more included in the discussion.
Abby Glenn, development director for Habitat for Humanity, says corporate partners are a huge asset to the work they do. Corporate donation matching programs help individual donors feel they are contributing more and help Habitat for Humanity cover the large costs of their projects.
Alex Neville-Verdugo, museum director at the Discovery Center in Springfield, describes the opportunities the Discovery Center has through partnerships with other educational organizations. Neville-Verdugo says the Discovery Center’s virtual learning program reaches across multiple countries, with traffic mostly coming from the U.S. and Canada.
Elizabeth Hurst, business development manager at HR Advantage, says we do see fewer women in the workforce today than before the pandemic. Hurst says many women want more flexible work environments and that is one way employers can capture the female labor force.
Curtis Marshall, CEO of Tie & Timber Beer Company, says he sees work-life balance very differently. When he was younger, he would push himself to take on more and more responsibility, but would stop and put his career on hold for months while living in New Zealand or Mexico, or to start a pet software project. He says he lives by the philosophy of work hard and play hard.
Brent Cochran didn’t think he would become a retailer, but when thinking of ways to keep his young adult son with Down syndrome intellectually engaged, he came across a father and son team that did just that. Cochran, now owner of Al’s Pals Pet Place, says both the needs of his son and his affection for the family dog with a sensitive stomach led him to the world of e-commerce.
Michelle Romero, co-owner of PKD Venue, says her business has adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic by changing its business model to include food service. Now on top of serving as a venue for rent, they can keep revenue through online and pick up and go orders.
Dr. Clifton Petty, dean of the Breech School of Business at Drury University, lists three priorities for an effective MBA program. Petty says an entrepreneurial focus, a cohesive group of fellow students and an emphasis on hands-on experience are things students should look for in an MBA program. This is sponsored content.
Megan Short, the executive director of the Springfield Contractors Association, discusses her company’s organization strategies to encourage networking. She encourages organizing networking events around some activity and working to explicitly provide time during events for people to chat and have conversation.