Another commercial building in the Rountree neighborhood is undergoing renovation work, with plans for a pottery studio by early spring.
At the intersection of Pickwick Avenue and Cherry Street, infill work is underway for Artistree Pottery LLC, co-owned by husband and wife Bo and Rachel Barks. The paint-your-own pottery business is located at 1423 E. Cherry St., Ste. 103, on the first floor of a vacant Spanish Mission-style building.
With 20 years of experience as a freelance interior designer, Rachel Barks said Artistree Pottery would be her first business ownership venture. She said she’s always been into art through her interior design career and took pottery classes while in college.
A career move was necessitated after she lost her vision earlier this year due to pseudoxanthoma elasticum, aka PXE, a genetic disease. She said making and selling pottery was a new business opportunity for her.
“I wanted to inspire others that when life gives you twists and turns, you can create something beautiful,” she said, adding the shop will provide a potter’s wheel on which people can create their own clay pieces.
The shop occupies approximately 1,250 square feet on the main level and another 350 square feet for storage space in an unfinished basement. The Barkses are on a three-year lease with Pickwick and Cherry LLC, with two additional renewal options. She declined to disclose the lease rate or startup costs.
Barks said Ross Construction Group LLC is the general contractor for the building renovation project, which started early this month. The lease starts Feb. 1, and she hopes to have the studio open by mid-March.
In addition, Ross Construction is in charge of another building renovation next door at 1427 E. Cherry St. Plans in that building call for a brick-and-mortar spot for Skully’s Food Truck and The Royal, a live music and bar venue. Both Skully’s and The Royal are set to open in early 2020.
Artistree Pottery also will have private classes, with pieces on display available for purchase. Barks said she would do commissioned pieces as well. Special events, including birthday parties and ladies’ nights, will periodically be held at the shop, with wine and other drinks to be on-site.
Barks said she and her husband are Rountree residents.
“We want to be able to collaborate with the other businesses here and try to help each other out,” she said, adding the corner of Cherry and Pickwick has been “a neighborhood jewel” for a long time. “There’s so many more opportunities there now and we’re so grateful to be a part of it.”
Another business near the active intersection is a neighborhood market concept called Culture Counter. It’s aiming to open next month.
Revival 98 opened a dispensary; the 101st store for Andy’s Frozen Custard Inc. debuted; and Collectomaniacs card shop consolidated two stores in a move.
Oftentimes it takes a while before your sidegig starts rolling. Barak Hill gives his experience slowly seeing his business improve, and how he used his connections and reputation to gain more clients. Barak Hill is a local professional musician.
Sandra Smart, a technology and commercialization specialist, shares helpful tools and resources to use for the customer discovery phase of launching a new tech business. Smart works with tech entrepreneurs and hosts training workshops through the Missouri SBDC at Missouri State University's efactory.
Jared Rasmussen, Office Leader for Springfield and Joplin with the engineering firm Olsson, explains the vision of the Renew Jordan Creek Project. He says the city's investment demonstrates it's commitment to the community.
Both Jeramey and Julia Henson talk about their experience in PDR (paintless dent repair), and elaborate on the need for efficient time management. Sometimes you need to know when to move on to the next project. Jeramey and Julia Henson are co-owners of the HM Dentworks Academy with Chris McWhirter.
Jessica Oliva, owner of Pickles and Buns food truck and co-owner of Tinga Tacos, says not to assume you know everything. She says her time in the industry has taught her that she always has more to learn.
Sandra Smart, a technology and commercialization specialist, explains what entrepreneurs should know about starting the customer discovery phase for launching your great tech business idea. Smart works with tech entrepreneurs and startups and hosts training workshops through the Missouri SBDC at Missouri State University's efactory.
Hollie Elliot describes the trends she sees in small towns after the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. She says that people see opportunity in these rural places they might not have seen before. Elliott is the Executive Director of the Dallas County Economic Development Group.
Sean Thouvenot, vice president of Branco Enterprises, gives an overview of what the process looks like once you have decided to invest in a new building. This video is sponsored by Branco Enterprises.
Caleb Scott, owner and coach for Queen City Insane Asylum semi-professional football team, talks about team cohesion. He says that despite the fact he may not look the part of a coach, the men look past it to see how they can work together.
Barak Hill, a professional musician living in the Springfield area, recounts when he first realized he could take his music career seriously. He recounts his journey to the point when he realized his passion could do more than pay for itself.