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Business: Not just for men anymore Women-owned businesses growing quickly in CSRA, Georgia By Gary Kauffman Scanning a white board filled with more than 150 names of women-owned businesses in the CSRA, it struck me: Women-owned businesses are hardly unusual anymore. There was a time, within the past generation, when a woman at the helm of a business was a bit of an oddity. But not anymore. According to a Forbes report, 31 percent of businesses in Georgia are either entirely or partially owned by women. In fact, since 1997 the number of businesses owned by women has increased by 118 percent in Georgia. That’s one

of the highest rates in the nation. Although no one has an exact tally of the number of women-owned businesses in the CSRA, as our white board indicates, it’s a significant number. “I think one of the reasons why women-owned businesses have grown is that women are good at networking and helping one another,” said Susan Caldwell, area director for the Small Business Development Center in Augusta. And success breeds success. “They’re seeing more women as role models,” Caldwell said. “They’re seeing more women who are successful, and

that encourages them to see entrepreneurship as a career choice.” The recession also played a role, Caldwell said. Hardest hit during that time were male-dominated fields. That often left women as the main breadwinners, and they became comfortable with that role. Women who have enjoyed successful careers in the corporate world are also turning to owning their own businesses, taking the skills and experience they’ve acquired See WOMEN BUSINESSES, page 2

Like mother, like daughter Alison Smith’s mother’s business inspired her own By Elisabeth Curry “My mom owning a business absolutely inspired me to start my own.” Standing next to her mother, Alison Smith, owner of Crickets Dry Goods in Evans, surveys the store she opened in October 2014. Unique gift items crafted by local artisans and hand-picked stylish clothing cover shelves, racks and tables, and it is evident that much effort has been put into creating a family-friendly atmosphere. Smith’s mother, Susan Bone, recently sold her own business – Ladybug’s Flowers & Gifts – to a 10-year employee. She has since come to work part-time in her daughter’s

new store, a juxtaposition both women find humor in, as Alison worked part-time in her mother’s business between 2005 and 2010. Unsurprisingly, Smith’s two daughters (Madison, 11, and Kate Lee, 8) have found ways to contribute at Crickets as well. “One of the reasons I started the business is that I have two girls,” Smith said, “and you don’t learn how to run a business in school. They helped us pick out the location, they helped us do the build-out here, they painted and stained things, and helped pick out items for the store. I think it’s a good experience for them to see how to start a business. It’s important to me to be a good role model for my girls, and I can’t do that if I’m working a corporate job.” Smith has a good mix of experience, both corporate (within the pharmaceutical industry), as well as small business knowledge within her mother’s former floral business. See MOTHER DAUGHTER, page 27

Alison Smith and her mother, Susan Bone, in Crickets Dry Goods. Smith says Bone’s years of running a business inspired her to start her own. Photo by Gary Kauffman

WOMEN BUSINESSES continued from page 1 into running their own companies. Kathy Williams is one such example. She left a position as vice president of operations for La Quinta hotels to open a day care center, Cornerstone Academy. “I was tired of working that hard for someone else,” Williams said. “They were making decisions based on what was good for the shareholders and not necessarily for what was good for the business. It became less about people and more about profits.” Owning her own business was a step toward being able to do things the way she felt was best. “I wanted to be in control where I make the decisions,” she said. Although running a day care was very different than her previous career, she capitalized on her experience with customer service, human resources and profit and loss statements. The hardest part was learning the day care business and building a brand from the ground up. It’s worked so far – she opened her first Cornerstone Academy in 2008 and a second in 2010. Traditionally, women-owned businesses had been in areas like day cares, hair salons and cleaning services. But that has changed radically, too. Business brokerages, construction and remodeling and truck sales – all once maleonly businesses – all have women as owners in the CSRA. Perhaps no one has strayed farther from the traditional female business path than Jan Bentley. Bentley owns Portable Services, a company that provides portable toilets to venues throughout the CSRA. Bentley worked for the company for five years, then became the primary owner in 2012 when the owner retired. “I always knew I was going to go into business for myself,” she said. “I just thought it’d be more in the health care field because that’s what I came out of. But I guess I’m still very much concerned with people’s health and their sanitary conditions.” The biggest obstacle for both Williams

and Bentley was obtaining the necessary capital to get started. Caldwell said that is usually the biggest hurdle women face when starting a business. Because banks were often reluctant to extend loans to women going into business, they used personal savings, credit cards and loans from friends. Because of that, women tend toward service-oriented businesses that require less capital, and often run smaller businesses that don’t require a constant influx of new capital. But that is changing, too. “Women are becoming more educated about getting funding,” Caldwell said. “And there are more resources out there.” Neither Williams or Bentley feel their gender has had any effect on how people view their businesses. “I’ve never felt I’ve run into any barriers because I’m a woman,” Williams said. “I don’t feel there are any opportunities I didn’t have because I’m a woman.” Even though she is one of the few women owners in the portable toilet business and has mostly male employees, Bentley said no one treats her differently because she’s a woman. “It should be about the service you’re giving the customer and the value they’re getting,” she said. However, Bentley admitted that as a woman, she does look at her portable toilets from a different perspective than most males would. “I know what I want a special events trailer to look like at a wedding,” she said. “I do think it does matter as a woman.” Often the women going into business for themselves have waited until kids were grown or until they’d established themselves in a career. But Caldwell said she is seeing younger people, both men and women, starting their own businesses. The reason, she said, is technology. “Technology has lowered the barriers for everyone,” she said. “It doesn’t take as much capital and it makes it easier for them to go into business.” One of the biggest assets women owners have is, as Caldwell stated, a better understanding of the value of networking. Wil-

Water park on hold for now Plans for a water park in Grovetown have been scuttled, at least temporarily. Benjamin Bell, managing partner and developer of the popular Lights of the South in Grovetown, has plans to build Scuttle’s Island Water Park at the same location. But in early March the Columbia County Planning Commission raised concerns about studies, permits and approvals for the land use – documents Bell contends they have on record – leading him to postpone his request. He was to present the plans again to the commission on April 2, but withdrew from that meeting on advice of his legal counsel. The proposed 50-acre water park would contain 20 water slides, including one 98 feet tall, a lazy river, a dual wave pool and a large interactive play area for children. In addition, the park would contain four res-

2 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

taurants and an area for retail shopping. Bell estimates it will create 115 or more seasonal jobs between Memorial Day and Labor Day. According to Scuttle Island’s Facebook page, most of the slides have already been built on the property and Bell avers that the park will be built. The Planning Commission is concerned about the impact the extra traffic will have on Louisville Road, and has also raised questions about the disposal of about 10,000 gallons of water per day and part of the land being on a flood plain. Bell contends that many of the concerns were complied with years ago for Lights of the South and are on filed in the county’s records. He says he has the originals of those documents.

Jan Bentley of Portable Services is one of few women owners in her line of work.

liams said that is her favorite part of her business. “It’s a great way to gain experience and to find that people are struggling with the same things,” she said. “They’ll have answers for what I don’t, and I’ll have answers that they don’t. I’ve probably learned more through networking than any other way.” One of the biggest concerns for many women, Caldwell added, is one that is sometimes self-imposed. “Men are often judged by the success of their careers while women are judged on the success of their business and at home,”

she said. “I hear from many women entrepreneurs that they really struggle with the balance of home and business.” Funding also continues to be a challenge, although Caldwell calls it an “unintentional bias.” She said because most investors are male, and because investors like to place their money with like-minded people, more money tends to move toward male entrepreneurs. But Georgia continues to be an entrepreneurial-friendly state, and the CSRA has also been a champion of the entrepreneur. That means women will continue to start up on their own and be successful.

THE CSRA’S ONLY MONTHLY BUSINESS MAGAZINE The Buzz on Biz mission is to act as an inspirational tool for those in the workplace and those who are entrepreneurs, and to provide useful, practical information to increase their companies’ bottom lines. To order a 12-month subscription mailed to your home or office, please mail a check for $36 to cover postage to the address below. Publisher Neil R. Gordon Editor in Chief Gary Kauffman/803-341-5830 Sales Manager Neil R. Gordon/706-589-6727 Sales Janine Garropy/803-480-2800 Design Gary Kauffman Photography Gary Kauffman Melissa Gordon/

Writers Jennifer Reynolds Elisabeth Curry Kelsey Morrow Lucy Adams Calendar Coordinator Kelsey Morrow Distribution Janine Garropy April Burckhalter Keefe Ken Brown Submit Information

Opinions expressed by the writers herein are their own and their respective institutions. Neither Buzz on Biz LLC or its agents or employees take any responsibility for the accuracy of submitted information, which is presented for informational purposes only.

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Publisher’s Notes Neil Gordon

Women’s World

Life for women has changed in the past 50 years May marks an important day on the calendar – Mother’s Day. In the mid-’60s when I was born my mother, like many of her friends, was a stay-at home mom. Fast forward 50 years and there are more and more working


moms and entrepreneurial moms – some with home-based businesses and others juggling the pressures of home and their businesses. More married or single women without children are creating their own glass ceiling and mentoring others. Our next two issues will spotlight the growing number of female-owned businesses in the CSRA, as well as female executives. Our news coverage includes comments from Susan Caldwell, area director for the Small Business Development Center, whose team trains men and women to excel in business. We also have an interesting mother/daughter business combo that has spanned decades and generations, from Ladybug’s Flowers & Gifts to Crickets. In our special advertising center section, we profile more than 10 “Women In Business.” Some are columnists in Buzz on Biz and some are those we do business with professionally and personally.

For example, my CPA firm for the past three years has been Hall & Associates. They are smart, attentive and worth their fees! Kelsey Morrow and yours truly interviewed Christine Hall and her partner, Amanda Schuyler, and it was fascinating to go beyond the numbers with them. Donna Martin writes a monthly marketing column and her partner, Samantha Bodie, is working on a nice Buzz on Biz brochure. They are profiled in these pages as well. The Gordons have their pest control through Advanced Services, and former “BugBabe” Dena Thomas has been a valued client for almost 10 years. She is one of the driving forces behind their multi-million dollar business. The females in the Gordon household get their hair done and mani/pedis through Robyn Kelley and her team at Trendz. Robyn answered a call to help the community after a tragedy in our family. We are eternally grateful to her.

Greeneway Growth....... 11

I often refer columnist Kim Romaner at Transworld Business Advisors to businesspeople looking to buy or sell, and if that day ever comes for me, she’s who I will turn to. Learn about these “superwomen” and so many more in our section. If you’d like to be part of this advertising section or want to reward a hardworking female employee, we’ll do a second section in our May 21 edition. If so, call me at 706-589-6727 or Janine Garropy at 803-480-2800. Hurry, we’re already half full.

Neil Gordon is president of Buzz on Biz, LLC and produces a daily TV segment on News 12 This Morning, a daily radio show on WRDW 1630 AM, a daily website and a weekly email business newsletter in addition to Buzz on Biz, the CSRA’s only monthly business publication.

Social Buzz............... 45-56

The Greeneway in North Augusta is a popular trail, with 20,000 using it each month. North Augusta is seeking a way to extend it to revitalize the downtown area.

Businessperson Of Month: PJ Campanaro............... 28

Women In Business 29-38 JB Whites Building........... 4 Reflecting the growing trend of people moving to downtown Augusta, the historic JB Whites Building is gaining new life with condos.

Buzz Bits.....................8 & 9 Business Openings........ 10

This attorney spends her work time in the courtroom, but when she’s off the clock she’s running. Her feats include a HalfIronman and a marathon.

Many businesses in the CSRA are owned by women. In this special section we take a close look at 11 of them, including a business brokerage, a veterinarian, a pest control service, a day care, an advertising agency, a hair salon and a couple of businesses that help the elderly and disabled stay at home in comfort.

Business Events............ 39

Tip Top Taps................... 48 A gas station in Evans is turned into a business selling craft beer in growlers and vapor cigarettes.

Carolina Moon.............. 49 A distillery in Edgefield produces liquors that are growing in popularity.

Camp Guide.............. 57-62

Columnists Christine Hall: Rules on charitable deductions...............................................................................6 Kim Romaner: Protecting yourself in business partnerships.....................................................6 Jeb Blount: The secret to closing a sale.......................................................................................... 12 Marin Rose: Forming productive habits......................................................................................... 12 Charles Kelly: Custom computers for a more productive office............................................ 14 Jeff Asselin: Examining Google’s search engine possibilities................................................. 14 Russell Head: Anticipating Department of Labor audits......................................................... 16 Mike Herrington: Disability income insurance............................................................................ 16 Gary Kauffman: Hiring your dream team of advisors................................................................ 18 Larry Rudwick: What to expect from a business coach............................................................ 18 Donna Martin: How to do public relations the right way........................................................ 20 Steve Swanson: Excellence at work................................................................................................. 22 Eddie Kennedy: Business Book Review – “Lead Like Ike” ........................................................ 22

Dr. Brad Steinle: Choosing chiropractic as a career.................................................................... 40 Missy Usry: Save time and money as a dual student................................................................. 42 Barry Paschal: Turning rejection letter into acceptance........................................................... 42 Jonathan Karow: Talking with The Voice’s Beth Spangler........................................................ 45 Alexandrea Daitch: Ideal Italian at Giuseppe’s............................................................................. 46 Margaret Centers: Travel In Germany.............................................................................................. 46 Ben Casella: Best beers for the spring............................................................................................. 48 Glenn Campbell: Young drivers take a spin around the track................................................ 50 Samantha Taylor: Netflix has lots but not everything............................................................... 51 Nora Blithe: The real work when moving....................................................................................... 52 Melissa Brown: Know what your food eats................................................................................... 52 Kathy Crist: Tips on keeping seniors physically fit...................................................................... 54 Greg Deal: Relaxing home worth a long commute................................................................... 54

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Historic building gains new life with condos Reflects growing trend of people moving downtown

By Elisabeth Curry First Friday in downtown Augusta bustles with the kind of energy and enthusiasm expected from a carnival. Bars and restaurants are packed, vendors are out in full force and live music abounds. In the thick of it all is the JB Whites Building, which features upscale condos and a first floor dedicated to commercial space, including The Book Tavern, New Moon Cafe and the Downtown Development Authority of Augusta. Downtown restaurant staples like Nacho Mama’s and Bee’s Knees are a minute’s walk from the front door. Pockets of Augusta history (like the Imperial Theatre, the statues of James Brown and James Oglethorpe and Riverwalk Augusta) dot the immediate area. With the JB Whites Building’s convenience to food, nightlife, and entertainment venues, it’s no surprise that half of the 51 condos have been sold. Twenty-six of the 51 condos in the JB Whites Building are still available, according to Adelle Dennis of Rex Property & Land. Dennis, a residential sales specialist whose real estate expertise includes historic properties and riverfront homes, said that positive press attention recently has encouraged people to move downtown. “Good press helps communicate that downtown Augusta is a nice place to live, because it is,” she said. The steady rate at which the condos are selling reflects a growing trend of people moving into the downtown Augusta area in an effort to centrally locate themselves to the majority of the recreation in the community or to their places of employment. Millennials (a term used loosely to define people born between the years of 1982 and 2002) especially find downtown Augusta to be the epicenter of entertainment and culture in the city. Dennis noted that a number of the current residents at the JB Whites Building are in their early 30s. “Since the economy has improved, we’ve definitely seen more younger buyers over the past few years now that they’re able to purchase homes,” Dennis said. “We’ve got a great mix of residents at the JB Whites Building. We’ve got first-time home buyers, people who wanted to live in a smaller place, and some owners who have a home somewhere else but work in Augusta, so they live in the building three or four days a week. The Homeowner’s Association meetings are a lot of fun. Everyone seems to get along really well.” The building originally housed JB White & Co., a southeastern department store chain founded by JB White in Augusta in 1874. Many Augusta natives still recall spending time searching the aisles of JB White’s for the perfect gift or stopping by

4 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

The historic JB Whites Building in the heart of downtown Augusta features an iconic water tower. Photo by Gary Kauffman

for a leisurely afternoon of shopping. The three-story building was constructed in 1924 and the fourth floor addition completed in 1946. The store sold everything from clothing and shoes to fine jewelry and linens, and contained a fur salon, a wig boutique and a bridal shop. Rialto Capital Management – a real estate investment and asset management company based in Miami – purchased the property in 2009, which had previously been under renovation and then stalled by foreclosure. All four levels of condos were subsequently finished in April 2012. Rex Property & Land is supervising management and property sales for Rialto. The owners have taken all of the necessary steps to make the project successful, including finishing renovations to all of the condos, offering suitable financing, and accessing secure parking. Three years after its completed renovation,

936 Broad Street now boasts contemporary studio, one- and two-bedroom condos which range in price from $65,000 to $250,000. The Homeowner’s Association works to maintain housekeeping in common areas, building events, landscaping and security. The condos feature open floor plans with high ceilings, stainless steel energy efficient appliances, on-site security, and gated parking. Downstairs, three out of six available commercial spaces are occupied; the remaining available first floor spaces vary in size from 800 to 2,000 square feet. Parking, in particular, can be an issue with real estate sales in city center and downtown areas. Street parking is not nearly as appealing an option as reserved off-street spots, driveways or garages to potential buyers. In downtown Augusta especially, as the social center for restaurants, bars, and entertainment in the town, as well as the access point

for Riverwalk Augusta and all of the activities the Savannah River provides, finding a place to park can be a bit of an ordeal. While the available spaces on Broad Street and the surrounding area aren’t metered – a refreshing change from most cities in Georgia – the uncertainty of street parking can be a deal breaker for people who might otherwise consider purchasing a downtown condo. Residents of the JB Whites Building are assured the convenience of a reserved parking space in the Ellis Street Car Park, a controlled-access parking lot right across the street. Covered parking spaces are available with admittance to a private elevator to the Skybridge – a covered walkway that provides direct entrance to the JB Whites Building condos. “The parking lot is gated and requires key card access,” Dennis said, “so it’s very secure, as well as convenient to the building.”

April 16-May 20, 2015, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business Accounting Christine Hall

Charity Case

IRS requires good records to count charitable deductions Keeping good records is the key to qualifying for the full charitable contribution deduction allowed by law. In particular, this includes ensuring that you have received required statements for each gift of at least $250. Therefore, taxpayers planning to claim charitable donations on next year’s tax return should make sure they obtain the records they need this year. To claim a charitable contribution deduction, donors must get a written and signed acknowledgment from the charity for all contributions of $250 or more. This includes gifts of both cash and property. For donations of property, the acknowledgment must include, among other things, a description of the items contributed. In addition, the law requires that taxpayers have all acknowledgements in hand before filing their tax return. These acknowledgments are not filed with the

return but must be retained by the taxpayer along with other tax records. I recently read about a court case that involved a taxpayer with high charitable donations. The IRS audited the taxpayer and found that the receipt the taxpayer received from their church was not signed so they disallowed it. The taxpayer went to the church, had the receipt signed and sent it back to the IRS. The IRS still disallowed it because the taxpayer did not have the signed receipt in hand prior to filing their tax return. It went to federal court and the case was upheld. Even though the IRS acknowledged that they had indeed made the charitable contribution, they disallowed it because the receipt was not signed by a church official prior to filing the return! Only donations to eligible organizations are tax-deductible so taxpayers must also be sure that any charity they are giving to is a qualified organization. Select Check, a searchable online tool available on, lists most organizations that are eligible to receive deductible contributions. In addition, churches, synagogues, temples, mosques and government agencies are eligible even if they are not listed in the tool’s database. Additionally, there are special rules that apply to charitable contributions of used clothing and household items, monetary donations, and year-end gifts. These include:

A taxpayer must have a bank record or written statement from the charity in order to deduct any donation Clothing and household items donated to charity generally must be in good used condition or better to be tax-deductible. Clothing or household items for which a taxpayer claims a deduction of more than $500 does not have to meet this standard if the taxpayer includes a qualified appraisal of the item with the return. A taxpayer must have a bank record or a written statement from the charity in order to deduct any donation of money, regardless of the amount. The record must show the name of the charity and the date and amount of the contribution. Bank records include canceled checks, and bank, credit union and credit card statements. Bank or credit union statements should show the name of the charity, the date, and the amount paid. Credit card statements should show the name of the charity, the date, and the transaction posting date. Donations of money include those made in cash or by check, electronic funds transfer, credit card and payroll deduction. For payroll deductions, the taxpayer should retain a pay stub, a Form W-2 wage statement or other document furnished

Business Matters A buy-sell agreement is designed to Kim Romaner

help business partners avoid conflict.

Agree to Disagree A buy-sell agreement can protect you from conflict

Todd was having a great day, so when his business partner and wife, June, walked into his office he gave her a big smile – which quickly disappeared when she shut the door behind her and told him she wanted a divorce and him out of the business. On the day Joseph decided to tell his three brothers and

6 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

business partners that he had a particularly malignant form of cancer and needed to cash out his part of the business, he was shocked when they offered him just a quarter of what he thought his share was worth. Katie was really excited about adding a talented third partner to her manufacturing business she shared with Belinda, but Belinda didn’t want another partner, nor did she want her ownership diluted. Katie was flabbergasted. She thought this decision would be a no-brainer. Like many business owners—married to their partners or not—Todd, Joseph, Katie and Belinda weren’t prepared for this sort of eventuality. But now that it was upon them, they would fare just as well as they had all prepared for it. Which, unfortunately, was not well. In all cases, hurt feelings and chaos en-

sued, jeopardizing the very businesses over which the parties were fighting. If all of these business owners had put in place a buy-sell agreement when they had become business partners, the path through the dissolution or structural change of their business partnerships would have been well defined in advance. A buy-sell agreement is designed to help business partners avoid conflict. It does this by restricting the sale or transfer of equity in a business; giving all the owners an “out;” deriving a mechanism by which to measure the value of equity interests of all the partners; and defining a method for cashing out. In such an agreement, certain trigger events are defined that will create either an option or an obligation of some of the parties to buy or sell ownership in the company. These triggers can be either voluntary or involuntary, such as

by the employer showing the total amount withheld for charity, along with the pledge card showing the name of the charity. Contributions are deductible in the year made. Thus, donations charged to a credit card before the end of 2015 will count for 2015, even if the credit card bill isn’t paid until 2016. Also, checks count for 2015 as long as they were mailed in 2015. Often I am asked by the taxpayer to claim “the maximum” allowed for charity. There is no maximum. Charity donations are based on the value of the donation made and taxpayer’s need to prepare a list for their tax preparers that include those amounts each year. Be sure to keep good records because if asked, you will need to submit those receipts to the IRS to prove you made each and every donation. This is a sponsored employment article. Hall & Associates LLC is a full-service public accounting firm established in 1979. They have a staff of experienced professionals that stand ready to meet all of your accounting, tax and general business needs. For a complimentary consultation, call 706-855-7733 or visit

a desire to sell your shares, or, as in Todd’s case above, an order from a divorce court. Once a trigger event occurs, some form of valuation must be defined and established, as well as an agreement on how that value will be paid. Other factors can be defined in the agreement, such as giving minority partners seats on the board or what happens if one of the partners is convicted of a crime. All partnerships eventually end. Before an unforeseen event arises, call on your trusted legal counsel to help you shape an agreement that you can lean on when the time comes. Kim Romaner is president of Transworld Business Advisors of Augusta, a business brokerage that helps people buy and sell businesses, and also enter into the franchise world. With over 100 locations in the U.S. and abroad, Transworld has sold many thousands of businesses. If you’d like to talk to Kim about selling your business, buying a franchise or turning your existing business into a franchise operation, please call 706-383-2994, x802, or email her at

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Uber service now in Augusta

Uber, the independent transportation service that claims to be faster and cheaper than traditional taxis, is making its mark on Augusta. Uber has been gaining popularity throughout the world and is available in more than 150 North American cities. After months of recruiting drivers, it launched in Augusta during Masters Week. The service makes use of dozens of independent drivers, using their own cars, and a smart phone app to order a ride. A tap of the app enters your location. Because of GPS, you don’t even need to know the address of your pickup location. You then request a ride and you’re connected with the nearest available driver. Then you enter the location of where you’re going, and Uber gives the driver directions. You’ll receive a text with the pickup time and a description of the driver and his or her car. The app also gives estimated drive time to your destination as well as estimated cost. All transactions are done via a credit card on your account, so there’s no need for cash. The drivers are independent contractors who use their own vehicles. They must be over 21, have a four-door car that is less than 10 years old, and have insurance and a valid driver’s license. Since they are independent they set their own hours. Uber also offers services for businesses, claiming they can save a company that has travelling employees thousands of dollars versus taxis and private car services.

EDTS named to global list EDTS continues to impress the world with its managed IT services. The company was ranked 135 among the world’s leading managed IT service providers in the eighth annual MSPmenter 501 Global Edition. This the third consecutive year that EDTS has earned a spot on the list. The recognition is based

buzz bits

on data from a global survey conducted in December and January. “We deliver IT solutions to drive profitability for our clients,” Charles Johnson, EDTS CEO, said. “As our clients grow, so does the demand for our business to reach new levels of client engagement. We are thrilled to debut on the MSPmentor global list representing growth in the managed IT services space.” This year the top MSPmentor 501 companies recorded higher recurring revenues than ever before. Combined, the total annual recurring revenues for all of MSPmentor 501 2015 companies reached a record high of $3.95 billion in 2014, up 26.5 percent year over year.

Gas tax to increase slightly In an attempt to raise funds for necessary transportation infrastructure repair, the Georgia legislature last week passed a bill that will raise the cost of a gallon of gasoline and hotel rooms. In a compromise, the Senate and House agreed to raise the excise tax on a gallon of gasoline to 26 cents (29 cents for diesel), up from 7.5 cents now. However, the bill also eliminated the sales tax so the increase is not as sharp as it would seem. On a $2 gallon of gas, under the current system there would be 15.5 cents of tax, and at $3 a gallon that would be 19.5 cents. At current prices, the new flat tax will add about 10 cents per gallon, or about $1.50 per fill up for the average car. In addition, the bill will also tack $5 onto every night’s stay in a hotel. In conjunction with several other measures, such as eliminating tax credits for hybrids and upping the license fees for alternate fuel vehicle plates, the bill will raise more than $900 million annually to provide much-need infrastructure repair to state roads and bridges. Some estimates has shown that the repairs would cost more than $1 billion annually, and expanding the current system would take $3 billion. Gov. Nathan Deal has said he will sign the bill into law.

8 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

Distribution center closing could slow bulk mail The U.S. Postal Service plans to close the Mail Distribution Center in Augusta in September, and that could have significant consequences for businesses and organizations that rely on bulk mailings. Budget cuts have led the postal service to start closing 80 distribution centers across the United States, and the one in Augusta is on the chopping block. Although the closing date had been reported as being in December, sources at the post office say they have been

Visitor spending $1.7 million without Masters

Visitors to Augusta are expected to spend $1.7 million during April – but that’s without taking into account The Masters tournament. The Augusta Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Augusta Sports Council announced the projected direct visitor spending on April 1, but did not include any of the activities for Masters Week. They noted that developing realistic estimates of the economic impact of the golf tournament is not only challenging, it is inherently uncertain. Other than The Masters, the biggest draws are a pair of basketball events. Both the Augusta Invitational basketball tournament, featuring boys

told the shutdown will take place in September. Once the Augusta distribution center is closed, Augustaarea mail will be distributed from Macon and from Columbia, S.C. That will affect businesses that rely on bulk mailings. Bulk mail can still be dropped off in Augusta, but it will be sent to Macon and Columbia for sorting before being mailed out. That could result in mailing delays of a day or two, possibly longer. The U.S. Post Office estimates and girls AAU players, and the Southern Exposure Showcase, featuring top travel teams from the South, are expected to generate in excess of $350,000. The American Postal Workers Union Tri-State Conference should also add more than $250,000 to the local economy. Direct visitor spending is calculated on research by the Georgia Department of Economic Development and Destination Marketing Association in conjunction with U.S. Travel Association and Tourism Economics.

Georgia thinking casinos for jobs You may want to postpone that trip to Vegas until after January, if a proposed constitutional amendment to Georgia’s constitution is passed. An amendment to allow casi-

it will also take slightly longer for a first-class letter to arrive at its destination, an average of 2.25 days instead of the current 2.14 days. There is no price increase associated with the closures. The closing of the 80 distribution centers is expected to save about $750 million annually. About 15,000 employees nationwide will be affected by the closings. The postal service is working to reassign those employees rather than lay them off. nos and legalized gambling on horse races was placed before the state House of Representatives at the end of March. Because of the way the state General Assembly works, a vote on the bill would not come up until January. Under the proposed bill, the state would receive $250 million yearly to place toward the HOPE Scholarship and Pre-K program. The plan calls for six casinos – one in Atlanta and the others in unnamed locations. In addition to the revenue from gambling, the casinos would also create jobs. One estimate is 10,000 temporary construction jobs and another 10,000 permanent jobs. Proponents of the bill say it will keep revenue in the state that is now going to casinos in other states. Opponents fear casinos will lead to crime and will target the poor.

Plane pull will raise funds for McDonald House More than 27 teams will flex their muscles on Saturday, April 25, to try to pull an airplane at Augusta Regional Airport on Saturday, April 25. The display of strength is for a good cause – to raise funds for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Augusta. The first pull will start at 10 a.m. In addition to watching people pull a plane, there will also be martial arts exhibitions, activities for kids and food vendors. The new Ronald McDonald House in Augusta recently opened at 1442 Harper Street, just a little over a football field away from the Children’s Hospital of Georgia.

Penny tax will fund Columbia County schools A penny sales tax that will fund about $140 million for school improvements in Columbia County was approved by voters March 21. The tax, known as E-SPLOST, was a renewal of the program already in place. In a light voter turnout, the sales tax was approved by about 75 percent of the voters. Projects to be funded by income from the tax in the next few years are new elementaries in Grovetown and Harlem, a new athletic complex at Lakeside High School, additions to Baker Place Elementary and Grovetown Middle School, technology upgrades, new school buses and building additions, renovations and improvements at other schools throughout the county. According to the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce, the county schools have grown by 2,000 students in the past five years, including 600 in the past year. Without the increased sales tax, the county would be forced to raise property taxes.

buzz bits

The Chamber also reported that although county schools rank in the top 10 percent in the state in academic performance, spending per student is lower than in 88 percent of state school districts.

Former local baseball star now a realtor A former local high school, college and pro baseball star has returned to the Augusta area to join a new team. Rich Poythress of Grovetown is a new realtor for DeFoor Realty of Appling. He starred for the Greenbrier High School team before moving on to set a dozen records for the University of Georgia. He was drafted by the Seattle Mariners as the 51st pick overall in 2009. He played six seasons as a first baseman in the minor leagues for the Mariners, Miami Marlins and Atlanta Braves. He reached as high as Triple A with the Mariners in 2013. In his minor league career he had a cumulative .280 batting average with 74 homers and 353 runs batted in. Poythress believes the skills he acquired in academics and as a professional baseball player, plus his in-depth knowledge of the Augusta area, will help him in his new career.

New manager coming to SRS in June The Savannah River Site will have a new manager in a few months. Jack Craig has been tabbed by the U.S. Department of Energy to take over the duties when current manager Dave Moody retires in June. Craig is no stranger to SRS, having served as acting manager at SRS for eight months in 2010. Craig is currently director of the Environmental Management Consolidated Business Center in Cincinnati and also the acting associate principle deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Environmental Management in Washington, D.C.

N. Augusta plaza owner makes plans to eliminate Kmart store Although representatives for Kmart have denied they’re closing their North Augusta store, the North Augusta Planning Commission approved a plan that would, if followed through, eliminate it. March 19 the Commission approved a plan by the developer of North Augusta Plaza on Martintown Road to demolish the space occupied by Kmart and repurpose it for five new stores. The plaza is also home to Publix, Hamricks and other stores that would

Little changes result in big savings Making changes in little ways has resulted in significant savings for Savannah River Nuclear Solutions. Continuous Improvement (CI) involves eliminating non-value added steps in processes. In fiscal year 2014, SRNS achieved $45.7 million in cost savings by engaging in CI initiatives, exceeding its CI goal for the year by more than $30 million. Since SRNS assumed the contract in 2008, CI productivity and efficiency cost savings total more than $200 million. “Through cost avoidances, productivity and efficiency improvements, SRNS employees have returned significant value to their customers,” said P.K. Hightower, manager of SRNS Continuous Improvement. “The Continuous Improvement program at SRNS strives to improve

be unaffected by the proposal. Although plans submitted to the planning commission show the new stores being occupied by Marshalls, Ross Dress for Less, Petsmart and Rack Room Shoes, it has not been confirmed that those businesses are actually planning to open stores there. The approval by the Planning Commission merely means the owners of the plaza can move forward with plans if they choose. The Commission has no say in what stores will come to the city. our processes in a highly-regulated environment while saving taxpayer dollars.” An example of a CI initiative from 2014 is the Corrective Action Program (CAP) Project, which will save 14,000 manhours per year, or $1.24 million in productivity savings. A program required by the Department of Energy, CAP serves to correct and prevent recurrence of issues affecting personal safety, operational safety and regulatory compliance.

Rotary donates used medical equipment Recycling isn’t just for paper and plastic. The Augusta South Rotary Club recently sponsored a yard sale during which they collected electronics and home medical equipment for recycling. They collected more than $100,000 worth of home medical equipment, including 30

wheelchairs. The home medical equipment will be refurbished and donated to Friends of Disabled Adults and Children (FODAC), an Atlanta-based organization that provides wheelchairs, walkers, crutches and other home medical equipment to the mobility impaired and their caregivers throughout Georgia. The collected electronics will be sold at FODAC’s thrift store. The yard sale, held at Aquinas High School, also collected $1,000 to benefit club programs, including The Dolly Parton Imagination Library literacy program.

Augusta economy still going strong Even with a new county to consider, the story of the Augusta area’s economy remains the same – increased growth. January marked the first time that the Augusta Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) included Lincoln County. But even with that factored in, the Hull College of Business Augusta Leading Economic Index (LEI) increased by 0.2 percent from December. That marks 11 consecutive months of growth. Since January 2014 the LEI has increased by 5.6 percent. Employment remains strong, with 228,700 people employed in the Augusta MSA in January. Employment growth has been seen in education and health services, financial activities, transportation and utilities, and in leisure and hospitality. The Augusta LEI is a monthly composite of several national, regional and local indicators. The LEI can indicate a change that may occur in the economy. They are not forecasts about the future but could signify future economic activity that could help businesses make better decisions. The Augusta MSA includes Burke, Columbia, Lincoln, McDuffie and Richmond counties in Georgia, and Aiken and Edgefield counties in South Carolina.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business openings, closings and moves Openings

Ashton Brooke Eclectic Boutique For those seeking the slightly offbeat, one-of-a-kind gift or home accessory, Ashton Brooke Eclectic Boutique in downtown Augusta could be a dream come true. Angela McNair moved her business to 9th Street, next to Boll Weevil, about a month ago. There she takes used furniture and other eclectic items and through creative use of paint and fabric, turns them into something unique. “They all take on a new personality,” she said. “Each piece is redone here so each one will be a one-of-a-kind piece.” In addition to the pieces in her store, she also does commissioned pieces to match a color scheme and offers in-home consultations. In her new location, she has also added new clothing and jewelry. “That’s been doing well since we moved here,” she said. Although she has owned the business for two years, she took a year off while deciding where to move. She chose downtown Augusta because of the potential she sees for it. “I’m from Augusta and I still believe in Augusta,” she said. “Evans is great, but they’ll never have downtown Augusta.” The move has already attracted some of those from beyond Augusta, as visitors staying at the Marriott across the street have come in to shop. “If they’re staying there for a couple of days, they sometimes come in two or three times,” McNair said. And while the shop’s wares cater more to the tastes of women, McNair said men are no strangers to the store. “We’ve had men coming in to buy things for their wives,” she said. Tin Lizzy’s Cantina Mexican food with a twist fills the menu at Augusta’s newest restaurant, Tin Lizzy’s Cantina. The restaurant opened on March 23 and serves what it calls “FlexMex” food. FlexMex combines some of the best of other cultural cuisine in a Mexican format, such as the Korean BBQ Taco or the Southern Comfort Taco. The Augusta location is the ninth store for the Tin Lizzy’s brand, which started in Buckhead in 2007, but it is the first outside the metro Atlanta area. McGhee is excited about the new location. Tin Lizzy’s is located in the former Roadrunner Café building across from Somewhere in Augusta on Washington Road. It

10 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

has a retro garage feel, with a bar top comprised of license plates and car-themed murals on the walls. It also features a patio, a hallmark of the brand. In addition to the FlexMex food, Tin Lizzy’s also has an ample bar area. The menu lists six kinds of margarita, and offers 12 beers on tap. The company hired about 130 employees to work in the Augusta store. New Panera in Aiken Whiskey Road in Aiken is getting another new restaurant. Panera Bread plans to construct a 4,300-square-foot building at 1953 Whiskey Road, just down from the location where a new Starbucks and Chipotle will be located. Panera is building on the site of a former Ryan’s Steak House. Panera is a chain restaurant that serves sandwiches, salads and baked items. Panera also has restaurants in the Augusta Exchange and in Evans. New restaurants in Aiken Chipotle Mexican Grill and another Starbucks are coming to Aiken later this year. The new stores will go into the former Theresa’s Mexican Restaurant location at 1935 Whiskey Road. Building plans have been submitted to Aiken’s Planning Department. The Starbucks, the third in Aiken, will feature a drive-thru. The Chipotle restaurant will be the first in the CSRA. The restaurant, started in 1993, serves burritos and tacos. Currently the closet one to Augusta is in Columbia, S.C. Fazoli’s Fazoli’s will be returning to Augusta within the next 18 months. The fastfood Italian restaurant had been part of the Washington Road landscape in the 1990s into the early 2000s. A Cook-Out restaurant is now going into the former location. The former owners of the local Fazoli’s, C&P Restaurants, have agreed to open six franchises across Georgia over the next six years. They say that Augusta is a top priority location. C&P Restaurants also owns the Cheddar’s and Captain D’s franchises in Augusta. Orangetheory Fitness Orangetheory Fitness, considered one of the best workouts in America, will be coming to Evans soon. Orangetheory Fitness Evans will be located at 4274 Washington Road, next to Publix. The fitness center is currently signing up members Monday-Friday 9:30 a.m-6 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. and Sunday 1-4 p.m. Orangetheoryfitness is a five-zone interval heart rate training method. It alternates treadmills, indoor rowing and weights. Advertising for the company says the training can burn 1,200 calories in an hour, and keep your body burning calories for up to 36 hours after the workout. For more information about Orangetheory Fitness Evans and introductory rates, call 678-809-3482 or see Goodwill Spring cleaning will be more convenient for Aiken residents with the opening of a

new attended donation center in the downtown area. Located at Aiken’s First Baptist Church, 120 Chesterfield St. NE, the Goodwill donation truck and its uniformed attendant will be in the church parking lot from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays starting  March 26. This will be Goodwill’s 11th  site available to donors in the CSRA, and the third in Aiken County. Closings

Wife Saver The Wife Saver restaurant in Aiken is now operating under a new name. The local franchise at 651 Silver Bluff Road closed as a Wife Saver on March 29 and reopened the next day as Michael’s Family Restaurant. According to Chris Cunningham, president of Wife Saver, the owner of the Wife Saver in Aiken was unable to make the improvements necessary to maintain his Wife Saver franchise license. Wife Saver is currently in negotiations to build another Wife Saver in Aiken and expects to have an announcement about that soon. Wife Saver also has locations on Washington Road and North Leg Road in Augusta, Furys Ferry Road in Evans, on Martintown road in North Augusta, and in Grovetown and Hephzibah. Moves Keen Signs & Graphics Keen Signs & Graphics has announced that it will be moving to downtown Augusta in a few months. Owner Lane Keen told Buzz on Biz president Neil Gordon that he will move his company to a larger, warehouse-type facility at 1350 Reynolds St., which had housed a video production company. Keen Signs is currently located at 266 Robert C. Daniel Parkway in the Augusta Exchange. “Our five year lease is ending,” Keen said. “We won’t have new services, but we’ll have more room and we’re going to bring in additional equipment.” Keen started his company five years ago after leaving a corporate job. The company offers signs, banners, T-shirts, embroidery, promotional products and printing. He expects the move to be complete by June. Final Cut A little more than a month after closing its store on Bobby Jones Expressway, Final Cut home décor and clothing store has a new home at the intersection of Washington and Furys Ferry roads. Final Cut had closed its doors on Feb. 26 and although it has not been officially confirmed, is expected to open April 18. The new location is in the former Weinberger’s Furniture building in the plaza that houses Goodwill Industries, Edgar’s Grille and Helms College. Goodwill is leasing the building to Final Cut. The new location is at the far right of the row of shops (when

looking from the front), nearest Washington Road. Final Cut offers discounted prices on national brands of home décor, furniture and clothing. The store opened at 216 Bobby Jones Expressway next to Lowes on June 12 last year. Etched Memory Your best memories can be seen in 3-D, thanks to the work of Etched Memory, a store new to downtown Augusta. Sally Cox, owner of the Etched Memory, said the business can convert 2-D images, like from a photograph, into 3-D engravings inside crystal products. The results are stunning. “I should’ve named the business ‘Wow!’ because that’s what everyone says,” Cox said. Cox has been in business for 2-1/2 years. About a month ago she moved her store

from a warehouse on Davis Road to 1124 Broad Street to take advantage of more walk-in traffic. But she continues to take online orders as well. The engraved crystals come in a variety of standard sizes and shapes, but she can also custom order pieces of crystal. They are popular as gifts and as memorials. “We cover everything from birth to death,” Cox said. “From baby’s first picture to memorials for pets and people.” It’s a gift that can endure the test of time as well. “It’s better than a photograph because it doesn’t fade through the years and it’s a keepsake that can be passed down through the generations,” she added. Cox has found her products are especially popular with hunters, something she discovered while operating a booth at last year’s Augusta Outdoor Expo. A photo of a hunting trophy becomes immortalized in 3-D crystal. “It’s something tasteful they can display on a desk in their office,” Cox said. “You can put a lot more of these on a shelf than deer heads.” The demand among hunters has become so strong that a national company has decided to distribute them through their website. “The pet industry is also a large chunk of our business,” Cox added. In addition to turning photos of pets into 3-D images, she is also working on a line of urns to hold the ashes of deceased pets. Her new location on Broad Street Cox has a large display of what she can accomplish in 3-D engraving, plus some point-ofpurchase items like monogrammed wine bottle stoppers.

Greeneway key to downtown N. Augusta Extending popular walking path could bring more shoppers downtown

By Gary Kauffman People out for a healthy walk could be just the breath of fresh air that downtown North Augusta needs. An idea that has gained traction in recent months is to extend the popular Greeneway walking trail into the downtown area. A “gateway,” or entry point in the downtown chock full of amenities like wifi, parking, bike parking and benches, would make it an attractive place to start and end a healthy walk. And while they’re downtown, those walkers might be more inclined to spend a little extra time shopping and eating. “The Greeneway is our most well-known asset and we want to use it to drive commerce downtown,” said Brett Brannon, chair of R4 and member of the executive committee of North Augusta 2000. R4 encompasses Retail, Restaurant, Recruitment and Retention, a group designed to help beef up North Augusta’s downtown. Lots of traffic on Greeneway Brannon noted that 20,000 people utilize the Greeneway each month – 70 percent of those on the weekends, and 30 percent from Georgia. The thought is if more of those people started utilizing a downtown gateway for entrance to the trail they might also spend more time doing other things downtown. Another driver to the Greeneway extension is the 60,000-square-foot building being constructed by Medac, a medical billing company, next to the city building. The company will eventually have more than 600 employees there. “We want them to stay in town and out of their cars,” Brannon said. “We want them to walk downtown to eat lunch. But currently there’s no walkable connection.” The Greeneway is currently 12.5 miles long. The tree-lined paved path meanders through North Augusta, from just north of I-20 through Hammonds Ferry to the Brick Ponds. Access to the Greeneway can be gained at Bergen Road, Martintown Road, Hammonds Ferry and the Brick Ponds. One possible location for the new gateway entrance would be on Spring Grove Avenue, between Georgia Avenue and West Street. Brannon said two routes have been pro-

The Greeneway in North Augusta is popular with walkers, runners and bicyclists. About 20,000 people use it each month, 30 percent from Georgia. Photo by Gary Kauffman

posed to extend the Greeneway into downtown, although there may also be other possibilities. One loop is .38 miles and another .48. “The city owns the path and the cross streets so that would be their responsibility,” Brannon said. “North Augusta 2000 would play a role in the creation of the gateway.” In the 2010 SPLOST, the Greeneway was identified as a line item, Brannon said, so the city has the funds to use on the Greeneway extension if it chooses to. Briton Williams, whose Edward Jones office is on West Street, one block west of Georgia Avenue, likes the proposed Greeneway extension. “I think it’s going to be huge,” he said.

“We have to find a way to drive potential customers to downtown North Augusta.” More businesses needed downtown But there is a catch – if the customers come, what will they find? Currently there are only a handful of restaurants in the downtown area. There is a bank, insurance agencies, a payday advance, a pharmacy, an optometrist and a tire and auto store. There are few retail shops or restaurants that invite a wanderer to stop by. “It’s sort of a chicken-and-egg thing,” Brannon admitted. “You need people to gain businesses, and you need businesses to get people. But I believe businesses will come because of (the trail extension).” The reason for the confidence is the expe-

rience of Traveler’s Rest, S.C., a small town about 2.5 hours north of North Augusta. The 20-mile-long Swamp Rabbit Trail links Traveler’s Rest and Greenville. According to Brannon and Williams, when the trail was extended into Traveler’s Rest, the town began to boom. “In Traveler’s Rest, the trail is what brought the business,” Williams said. “There are 23 restaurants there now because of that trail.” Brannon said a study of the Swamp Rabbit Trail found that it had a $6.5 million impact on Traveler’s Rest. While no such study has been done on North Augusta and the Greeneway, Brannon expects extending it to the downtown to have a sizeable impact. “We’re certainly not the first city to think of this so there’s a lot of data out there,” he said. A new way of thinking Williams said it will require a different way of thinking of the Greeneway. “We’ve always thought of it for recreation,” he said. “It’d be great to use a tool like the Greeneway not only for recreational health but also for economic development.” Julie Blankenship, chiropractor with Brantley Chiropractic on West Street, would like to see the Greeneway extension tied in with Project Jackson, the proposed site of the GreenJackets new stadium along the Savannah River and Georgia Avenue. It would be an uphill walk of nearly a mile from the stadium to the downtown area. “Because of the terrain, a one-line openair trolley running from the Greeneway to the ballfield would be an additional attraction,” she said. Williams hopes the trail extension would inspire restaurants to move into a downtown building rather than in a strip mall at the edge of town. Blankenship said the key word for any new business coming into the downtown is quality. “The higher end of quality is what we want to focus on,” she said. “We want unique and quality in the downtown.” Although not a business that would necessarily benefit directly from increased downtown traffic, Blankenship said she would do her part to encourage downtown growth and feels other businesses should too. “It benefits every business to participate in a project that brings new business downtown,” she said. She believes that extending the Greeneway could be a life-or-death issue for North Augusta. “It very well could be the difference between the downtown falling by the wayside or it flourishing,” she said. Brannon doesn’t see much downside to extending the Greeneway. “I’ve arrived at the conclusion that even if it doesn’t have the economic impact we think it will, in the end we’ll have extended it a mile and it will be used,” he said. “That’s not a bad investment for the community.”

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business Sales Jeb Blount

Closing Lines

Secret to closing a sale can be summed up in one word It doesn’t matter where I go or what I do, I can’t get away from salespeople who quiz me about closing techniques, and sales managers who beg me to teach them how to get their salespeople to close, while complaining that this rep or that rep “is not a closer.” I do my best to avoid these conversations because philosophically I believe that closing is a process that depends on excellence throughout the entire sales process rather than a point in time where a manipulative line or tactic gets the prospect to say yes. I understand their queries, though, because if you’re in sales you’re looking for the edge that will help you close more deals. Unfortunately, most people want the easy way out so they spend their time looking for shortcuts and silver bullets that will miraculously deliver huge commission checks. This is why so many of the questions I get begin with: “What’s the trick…” or “Can you tell me the secret….” Sadly, salespeople seek closing techniques in the same vein that golfers pursue the perfect putter. From superstitions (I’ll admit that there was even a time when I would wear my special closing tie on sales

Business Habits Marin Rose

Habit Forming

Create good habits for yourself and team to support your goals There are a lot of misconceptions about habits. The notion that there’s a magic period of time after which actions become habits, for instance, is wrong.

12 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

calls) to an endless stream of cheesy scripts, there seems to be no end to the “experts” who are quick to claim that they can lift away the mystery to “closing the deal every time.” It’s why so many salespeople have been duped into buying into seminars and sales systems that promise to deliver the secrets that will deliver them into the Promised Land of closing. Here is the brutal truth: All of those so called “experts” are wrong. On your quest to find the holy grail of sales, there is only one closing technique that really works and for the first time I’m going to share this secret with you. Get your note pad and pen ready. Here it is. The silver bullet, the sacred secret, the mystery revealed, the magic closing pill is: Ask. That’s it. The only closing technique that really works. Just ask for: • the appointment • the next step • the decision maker • the business • what you want The fact is, if you are having a hard time getting the next appointment, getting to decision makers, getting information from your prospect, or closing the deal, nine out of 10 times it is because you are not asking. Why? Because nine out of 10 times you are afraid to hear “no.” Rather than admitting fear and working to overcome it, salespeople too often blame their failure to close on everything else. They blame the product, the engineers, the stupid customers, the company, economy, boss and bad luck.

Instead of owning up to their shortcoming they look for secrets, tricks, silver bullets, and turn to cheesy closing scripts that make them and their prospect feel even worse. And they wait in line after my keynotes to ask me to whisper into their ear the one technique that will close them all. Instead of facing their fear of “no” and asking anyway, they hide behind justifications like not wanting to “seem too pushy” or it’s just bad timing. Along the way their self-esteem deteriorates, belief in self suffers, confidence falls to the floor and, ultimately, they either fail to reach their true potential or end up carrying a box, with the stuff from their desk in it, to their car on the way to the unemployment line. Getting past the fear of “no” isn’t easy. The first step is to at least acknowledge that your fear is real. I’ve been selling

Changing old habits and forming new ones is hard and can take awhile to establish. But there’s no question that developing those good habits is well worth the effort – as long as they’re applied to the proper tasks. On both the individual employee level and team-wide, common business problems arise when habit is applied in the wrong places. Habit works great when it comes to daily tactics. For team managers, this means regularly checking in with employees, treating customers consistently and automating systems for activities like communications and product delivery. Efficient habits that are internalized team-wide result in excellence, efficiency and productivity. For individuals, habitually archiving emails, tidying up at the end of each day and preparing for meetings ahead of time all lead to better organization at

work, which translates into better performance and a more satisfying work life. Where can you put habits in to place so you and your colleagues are not constantly re-inventing the wheel or catching up on work that has piled up and become overwhelming? Unfortunately, even as the benefits of habit are overlooked when it comes to repetitive tasks, the downside of habit is often ignored when it comes to high-level strategy. High-level strategy is often based upon long-time ingrained practice – habit – when it should actually be developed thoughtfully and intentionally. When it comes to major themes, rather than unthinkingly accepting the status quo, sit back and question your mission and methods. Whether it’s your overall business strategy or your individual career goals, stop relying on automatic thinking. For

my entire life and have been incredibly successful at it, yet today I still have to remind myself, from time to time, that “no” won’t kill me. Once you admit that you fear “no, you can then begin to pay attention to your behavior in front of prospects and customers. Start by learning to anticipate the anxiety that comes right before asking for anything you want. Then practice overcoming your fear by doing it anyway. You see, courage is like a muscle. It grows stronger when exercised. Jeb Blount is the founder of Sales Gravy in Thomson. He helps sales teams across the globe reach peak performance fast through keynote speeches, boot camps, seminars, and on-site and online training experiences. Hire Jeb to speak at your next sales meeting or conference. Call at 1-888-360-2249 or visit for more information.

success in business and in life, make conscious choices about where you want to go. Then form healthy daily habits to support those goals. Free Document Shredding Taxes are done. Now what to do with that mass of old, unneeded documents? Take advantage of free, unlimited, on-site shredding courtesy of Libra Organizing. Saturday, May 2, 8-11 a.m. at The Cleveland Group, CPAs, parking lot on Davis Road. Shredding and recycling provided by Augusta Data Storage, Inc. Stop by Marin’s table for free refreshments and organizing tips. Professional Organizing Coach Marin Rose of Libra Organizing is celebrating five years organizing people’s spaces and lives to help them become happier and more productive – and less stressed. Contact Marin at to schedule a free organizing assessment in your home or office, or to hire her as a speaker.

April 16-May 20, 2015


Business Solutions Charles Kelly


With custom computers, you get what you want and need Where do you buy your desktop computers for your business? Do you just write a check for whatever your IT company tells you to? Or do you order them online or buy what’s available at your local retail store? These computers might look good on paper, but if you take a typical retail computer – even a high-end “name brand” with good specs – and compare it to a custombuilt system, you will be surprised at the time it takes to get the computer from the box it came in to a working member of your team. These branded systems come with a plethora of advertisements, trial software versions and usually require a significant amount of time just to do Windows updates.

Business Online Jeff Asselin

Search Engine SOS Google comes to the rescue to draw people to your website

If you operate a business locally, getting found on the web is just as important as being visible to potential clients, repeat visitors and referrals. This is a no-brainer for brick and mortar companies, but how about those businesses who run their operation out of a house, like landscaping, crafts or other professional services? It is a little trickier, but super important. Google to the rescue! Over the past few years Google has re-worked its repository of useful local business information. What started out as Google Places has evolved into Google’s My

14 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

And that’s assuming you got the correct operating system for your business. We have many customers that walk into Computer Exchange asking if we can “downgrade” their Windows 8.1 computer to Windows7 and in most cases we cannot. Other customers find out that because of the nature of the network they are on they need Windows 7 or 8 Pro and once again, the upgrade to that OS is expensive and time consuming. So, compare these “branded” systems to a custom-built computer, as thousands of our home and business customers have over the last 20 years, and you will find that custom-built machines are faster out of the box, all updates are done and are never loaded with trial software. What we do load is a battery of free programs that are “best in class” such as Acrobat Reader. Everybody will need to read PDFs, so why would you want to take the time to load that when your computer builder should do it for you? A custom builder will also find out what OS you need and build the system with Windows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8.1 or 8.1 Pro. We also find out if you can use your existing Microsoft Office licenses instead of automatically assuming that you need the most expensive version of Office that exists (or giving you a trial

Business ( The search engine giant’s business directory is a powerful and useful tool in helping businesses get found on the web. The information in Google’s My Business is used in Google Local map listings results also. Google always wants to deliver relevant search results to their users and continually tries to maintain the highest quality information for businesses in Google’s databases. Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) involves taking control of and ranking three areas: 1) Your website, 2) Your Google My Business Page, and 3) Alternative Citations. In order to keep your website performing at its best, you should create targeted landing pages for several key search terms. These pages should have relevant keywords used with the appropriate density, images and video labeled in a way that search engines will reward your page with higher relevance. Do your research before developing landing pages and develop an awesome link building strategy. Your Google My Business listing is key! Google’s My Business ties in loosely with Google’s social media network, Google+. Businesses should periodically verify their directory information

Custom-built machines are faster out of the box, all updates are done and are never loaded with trial software version that you get used to and then suddenly, during the middle of a big project, realize that you have to buy it and buy it today!). We see a lot of this sort of thing when you have an IT company that you don’t spend much time discussing costs with. Some of these IT companies fancy themselves to be like a doctor… and look aghast at you if you ask what something might cost. I will be the first to tell you that a good custom-built computer is going to cost more than the closeout at that mail order company or than a display that’s been knocked around for six months at a big box store, but I can also tell you for sure that your total cost of ownership per year is going to be less with someone like Computer Exchange, because we build good computers. Custom builders use better cooling and power, fresh off-the-shelf products, including the best motherboards and hard drives, build you exactly what you want with the software you want

and enhance their listings when possible. A physical address is required to create a Google My Business page and is required if you want to show up in the “7-pack” (abbreviated business listing results) and map listings. For a variety of reasons, this can often cause uneasiness if the business is home-based. Profiles are ranked by a mix of organic signals plus number and quality of NAP (Name, Address & Phone) Citations. Citations are places on the internet

and nothing you don’t want. We have been building computers since the year we opened in 1995 so with a custombuilt computer you also get advice and help from people who know what they are doing. Your computer will be built and serviced at the location you purchase it from. It can be delivered, integrated into your home office or into your network and your data migrated. And, as of January 1, our custom-built computers have a two-year warranty, twice what those mail order and big box stores offer. So do your business a favor and populate it with robust computers that are custom designed and built to meet your needs today and years to come. Charles Kelly is co-owner of Computer Exchange, with four locations in the CSRA: South Augusta, North Augusta, Martinez and Grovetown. Computer Exchange specializes in computer solutions for home and business. For answers to your computer questions, email him at

where your name, address and phone number combination appear. Examples include Yelp, Yellow Pages, Local Directories, Niche Directories, Social Media and various Rich Media sites (YouTube, Vimeo). Many directories exist within highly specified niches. So, whether you have a storefront on Main Street, work out of an office park or even your home or automobile – your visibility on the web is critical. Keep in mind the three areas I spoke of: Your Website, Your Google My Business Profile Page and Appropriate Citations, are not meant to be the “silver bullets” to higher search results. There are literally thousands of things a business could do (such as update website content frequently or social media strategy) to improve your search engine results – you just need to start somewhere! Jeff Asselin is Director of Sales and Marketing for Powerserve, a web development company that focuses on websites, custom business software, search engine optimization, graphic design and social media marketing. For more information , visit or his office at 961 Broad St., Augusta. Contact him at or 706-691-7189 or 706-826-1506, ext 122.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business Benefits Russell Head

Audit Awareness

Tips to pass a benefit plan audit by the DOL

The Department of Labor (DOL) has long held the right to oversee and audit all employer plans subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). While it makes sense that retirement plans would fall into this category, many businesses are not aware that their benefit plans also may be subject to many of the requirements of ERISA. And now, thanks in part to the requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the DOL is taking a closer look at employers’ benefits plans, often in the form of a formal audit by the enforcement arm of the department, the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA).

Business Advice Mike Herrington

Long-Term Plans Plan ahead to provide for disability, long-term care

When disability strikes, most business owners want time in order to assess the likely duration and impact of the disability, before making business liquidation decisions. Without advance planning, however, even a shortterm disability may result in a forced business liquidation. If a business owner wants to keep the business open during a shorter-term disability and avoid a forced liquidation, funds are needed: • to pay business operating expenses during the disability; and • to continue an income to the owner. If a business owner wants to keep the business open

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In fact, nearly 4,000 employee benefits plans were audited by the EBSA last year alone, with about 65 percent of those audits resulting in fines or other corrective action. While undergoing a DOL audit is no one’s idea of a good time, employers who sponsor group health and other benefits plans would be wise to prepare for the possibility. There are several steps that can be taken now to help take the sting out of any future audit. Assemble the Documents. All employer plans subject to ERISA, regardless of size, are required to keep and distribute proper documentation. Each plan requires its own plan document which defines how the plan operates, who is eligible to participate in the plan and who is responsible for the plan. A summary plan description (SPD) is a shorter, easier-to-read summary of the plan that all employees receive when they become eligible to participate in the plan. Depending on changes to the plan or changes in the regulatory requirements, a Summary of Material Modifications (SMM) may also be needed. The Department of Labor has specific guidance concerning what to include in these documents, as well as when and how often to distribute them to your employees. An ERISA-compliant plan will be updated to reflect requirements

during this shorter-term disability, possible insurance solutions are : • Business overhead expense insurance can be used to reimburse the business owner for business expenses during periods of shorter-term disability. • Disability income insurance can be used to replace business income lost while the owner is sick or hurt and unable to work. With a longer-term disability, the owner needs time to liquidate the business in an orderly manner. Without sufficient income, however, the business owner may be forced to liquidate both business and personal assets in a disadvantageous manner. Disability income insurance can be used to replace the income previously generated by the business, giving the owner the time necessary to execute an orderly business liquidation. Separating FICTION from FACT Few people are prepared to handle the financial burden of long-term health care. In fact, many people have a false sense of security when it comes to long-term care. FICTION: “Medicare and my Medicare supplement policy will cover it.” FACT: In fact, Medicare and “Medigap” insurance were never intended to pay for ongoing, long-term care.

of the PPACA, as well as any significant plan design changes. An ERISA auditor will want to see current documents, as well as dates of distribution. Take Note of the Notices. The ERISA law has been amended several times over the years with the addition of the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA), the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act (WHCR), among others. Many of these laws call for required notices that must be distributed and acknowledged by plan participants. Having an organized method for managing these notices is a must. Follow the Rules. Employers have some freedom in choosing the terms of their plan (or if they will offer a benefit plan at all). Once these terms are defined, however, it is essential that they follow the plan document exactly. For example, auditors may check to see if plan sponsors are following their own rules concerning employee eligibility for participation in the plan. Plan sponsors will need to be familiar with the requirements of the plan to assure the day-to-day activities match the terms set out in the plan document. File those forms. Most plans with more than 100 participants, and nearly

all self-funded plans, are required to file an annual Form 5500 with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Additionally, a Summary Annual Report (SAR) may need to be created and distributed to participants. Once these forms are filed and distributed, copies should be kept for each year the plan is in effect. For plans that may not have completed required filings, the DOL has the Delinquent Filer Voluntary Compliance Program (DFVCP). Details can be found on the DOL website. All employer plans subject to ERISA are at risk for receiving the dreaded audit letter. However, careful attention to the design and maintenance of the plan can help you avoid costly fines and additional time and effort spent on responding to that unwelcome knock at your door. For further explanation of information outlined in this article, please refer to the following resources: dol. gov/ebsa,, and doi. Russell T. Head is President/Managing Partner with Group & Benefits Consultants, Inc., Augusta’s largest, privately held, locally owned employee benefits consulting firm. He can be reached at 706-733-3459 or rthead@gandbc. com. Visit Group & Benefits Consultants at

At least 70 percent of people over 65 will need long-term care services Only about 12 percent of nursing home costs are paid by Medicare, for shortterm skilled nursing home care following hospitalization. Medicare and most health insurance plans, including Medicare supplement policies, do not pay for long-term custodial care. FICTION: “It won’t happen to me.” FACT: At least 70 percent of people over 65 will need long-term care services and supports at some point in their lives. About 68 percent of nursing home residents and 72 percent of assisted living residents are women. FICTION: “I can afford it.” FACT: As a national average, a year in a nursing home is currently estimated to cost about $87,000. In some areas, it can easily cost over $100,000! The average length of a nursing home stay is 835 days. The national average cost of a one-bedroom in an assisted living facility in the U.S. was $42,000 per year in 2014. Home health care is less expensive, but it still adds up. In 2014, the national

average hourly rate for licensed home health aides was $20. Bringing an aide into your home for 20 hours a week can cost over $1,600 each month, or almost $20,000 a year. FICTION: “If I can’t afford it, I’ll go on Medicaid.” FACT: Medicaid, or welfare assistance, has many “strings” attached and is only available to people who meet federal poverty guidelines. Whether purchased for yourself, your spouse or for an aging parent, long-term care insurance can help protect assets accumulated over a lifetime from the ravages of long-term care costs. Fiscal Fitness is a sponsored financial column. Mike Herrington is President of Herrington Financial Services, Inc, a Registered Investment Advisor. He is a Certified Financial Planner licensee(CFP), a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and a Certified Estate Planner(CEP). He has been serving clients in the CSRA since 1984. Contact him at 706-8688673 or

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Deeper Thinking Gary Kauffman

Dream Team

Businesspeople can all use a little help from their friends Do you know who the smartest person in the world is? Neither do I, but I’m pretty sure it isn’t you. And it certainly isn’t me. Yet sometimes we make business decisions as if we had been endowed with the mind of God. Our latest brainstorm will build a better mousetrap, reinvent the wheel and make sliced bread look like a pedestrian invention.

Business Advice Larry Rudwick

Helping Hand

A business advisor can help take you to the next level It’s the smart people who know they don’t know it all, and are confident enough to be open for help. And it’s the smarter people who actually take action to seek out people that can give them good advice where they need help. Typically, someone interested in making some positive change contacts a business coach or advisor. The necessary key is the client must really want to improve their situation, because it takes full focus and commitment to make changes happen. The business advisor’s role often involves assisting people in various ways, such as helping people 1) understand themselves better – their goals, strengths, passions and challenges 2) become more passionate about what they actually do, 3) change their situation to what they have more passion for, 4) make an action plan, 5) become more focused, pro-active and accountable, and/or 6) feel better about themselves, with more of a sense of serenity.

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Until it fails. Face it, we all have limitations on our knowledge, creativity and experience. We need someone to take an objective look and point out that our brainstorm is little more than a light drizzle. We need someone to say, great idea but have you thought of this? That’s why business owners are wise to build a team of advisors. I’m not talking about increasing your payroll by adding a bunch of new employees. This “team” is made up of people that you already have around you – peers, friends and even your spouse. You won’t often, if ever, bring them all together in a boardroom. Meeting with them will usually happen on a one-on-one basis, probably over a cup of coffee and a bagel away from the office. You might not even think of them as “business” meetings. You’re just having a conversation with a friend – but the wisdom you can glean from these informal meetings are often priceless. When I had my advertising/marketing business I would periodically meet with various people in similar but noncompeting lines of work – a sign maker,

a printer – and a couple of clients who were astute businessmen. I not only bounced ideas off them, but discussed the various issues that come up in business, like how to deal with problem clients, how to delegate tasks and best accounting practices (i.e., collecting from deadbeats). I also often found myself on the other end. The people I met with bounced their ideas off of me and discussed their own issues. Clients would ask me not only for marketing advice, but for general business advice. Even when I was the one dispensing the advice, I almost always left those meetings feeling encouraged and with a new vigor for my job. Sometimes just knowing that other people are facing the same issues can lift a weight from your shoulders. One of the advisors that is often easy to overlook is your spouse. He or she

knows you better than anyone else and can give you advice you won’t get from anyone else. You might have to humble yourself a bit to take advice from a spouse, but you’ll almost always find it rewarding. Seeking advice can be a humbling experience. It’s admitting that you don’t know everything and that someone may have a better idea. But unless you really are the smartest person in the world, seeking advice from others is one of the smartest things you can do.

A really good business advisor also knows all of the basics of business from operations to accounting, sales and marketing, financing, negotiations, management and leadership. No matter what the problem the business client may have, the advisor will either help them through their problem, or prepare them to speak to the needed expert, such as a lawyer or CPA. Initial Assessment: Often the process starts out as an initial assessment. The client will answer some questions about their goals, passions and challenges. This starts a process of drilling down to discover the root causes of what is holding back the business and/or the individual client. It’s a process like “peeling an onion!” A simple business plan may even be written. Next Steps: Depending on what is initially discovered, the advisor may work with the client on some “low hanging fruit,” the areas that will provide the most “bang for the buck.” In other words, the best return on investment. This might be to stop providing a product or service that is losing money, or to improve how the team communicates with each other by holding an hour-long meeting once a week. Positive Reinforcement: The good business advisor will often initially suggest changes that are easy and simple to make. This builds the confidence to start to tackle more difficult challenges

next. Change is often hard to initiate, but when clients find that change can be fun and/or rewarding, the client often learns to embrace change! Every engagement is different! Each person the business advisor works with 1) has a different personality, 2) is in a different situation, and 3) is closely involved with different people. When I work with a business owner, the business is unique, due to the 1) type of business, 2) age of the business, 3) way it is managed, 4) corporate culture, 5) financial situation, and more. I will often work with some or all of the employees, depending on the owner’s needs and preferences. I love helping and advising people

how to face their challenges, to learn how to do better in their businesses, careers and personal lives. I am very fortunate and blessed to be given the opportunity to use my talents doing what I am quite passionate about. Feel free to challenge me! Look over my website, www.BusinessTuneUps. com, sign up for my newsletter, give me a call or email me.

Sometimes just knowing that other people are facing the same issues can lift a weight from your shoulders

Gary Kauffman is Editor in Chief of Buzz on Biz and manages the content for print and web publications. He moved from Indiana to the CSRA in December 2013. Prior to moving here, he ran his own graphic design/advertising business for 17 years where he worked with many small businesses. You can reach him at

Larry Rudwick is a business and relationship coach. For more information, visit where you can sign up for a free newsletter or listen to podcasts. Contact him through the website or call him for a free consultation at 571-331-6102. He enjoys facing challenges.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business Publicity Donna Martin

Tell the Good News Good PR can gain positive attention for your company

Public Relations (PR) is something every company, regardless of size, should consider incorporating into their marketing plan. PR is usually media-focused, with the goal of communicating with the media in efforts to gain coverage in various publications, broadcast news and the internet. PR Powers Your Company Image Does your company do something that makes you stand out? Companies should share information that makes them more appealing and interesting to both members of the public and the media. A favorable image can help increase a company’s sales as well as give the community an intimate view of how the company sup-

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ports its community. The Many Faces of PR There are a number of tools and methods that a public relations department or representative employs to enhance a company’s image. Some of the more effective ways include news releases and announcements that are sent to the media, newsletters sent to customers, appearances at public events, such as trade shows or conventions, and hosting events, such as grand openings. A few very effective PR tactics that Martin Wilson Marketing incorporates into marketing plans include news releases, product launches, blogs, and Facebook postings, as well as grand openings and/or tours of your facility. Share Your Good News with a News Release When was the last time your company issued a news release? People like to hear good news. Topics for news releases should be newsworthy items such as a new product or service offered by your company, addition of a new partner or employee, growth/expansion of your business and any ways you support your community through charitable giving. Structure of a News Release The format helps journalists separate press releases from sales pitches. Generally, a PR body consists of four to five

paragraphs with a word limit ranging from 400 to 500. Below are the components of a solid news release Headline – used to grab the attention of journalists and briefly summarize the news. Dateline – contains the release date and usually the originating city of the press release. Opening Paragraph  – first paragraph in a press release that answers who, what, when, where and why. Body – further explanation, statistics, background, or other details relevant to the news. Boilerplate – a short “about” section, providing independent background on the issuing company, organization, or

individual. Media contact information – contact details of your PR person. If you are working with a marketing company but have not sent out news releases, I recommend that you ask them if they have a PR person on staff. Consider sharing your good news by including the power of a news release in your marketing strategy. Donna Martin is co-owner of Martin Wilson Marketing, a full-service CSRA marketing company created to help businesses and organizations grow and shine. She shares her 30-plus years of corporate marketing communications experience with entities seeking a higher tier of visibility and profitability. Contact her at

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Faith at Work Steve Swanson

Consistent Living Our call is to work with excellence in all we do

It’s pretty hard for me to remember my life before I started working regularly. I started working in high school and have been at it ever since. I’ve worked at restaurants, have been a dishwasher, delivered newspapers and delivered flowers for a florist. I’ve worked as a telephone operator, been a church youth director, a school bus driver, and now, for many years, worked in radio. My first job with an actual paycheck consisted of busing tables for a restaurant called “King’s Food Host.” I made a whopping $1.30 an hour (not a typo!) for cleaning up crumbs

Deeper Thinking Eddie Kennedy

I Like Ike

A look at general’s leadership provides business lessons It is always interesting to look back in history to see what decisions and actions people took that helped turn them into great leaders. Geoff Loftus’ book, Lead Like Ike, examines the role of General Dwight D. “Ike” Eisenhower leading up to the invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944. Loftus takes the reader through the major decisions and circumstances that Ike had to resolve and uses them as a point of perspective to explain strategies that any business leader can use to succeed in today’s competitive environment. Eisenhower had been a middle manager for most of his career, but on June 24, 1942, he was thrust into the job of CEO of D-Day, Inc. He was given a task that seemed impossible – build a multi-national work force, oversee

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and a ton of garbage patrons left for me as a souvenirs of their meals. (It was a good preview of life with small children. I just didn’t know it at the time.) Work is a valuable and necessary part of our lives. I am often amazed and a bit confused by the number of people who complain about their jobs. I have learned that folks often meet the level of their own effort and expectations. I believe in the importance of working with excellence and consistency in whatever position you’re in. I think your character comes out most clearly when you’re working by yourself. You may be focused and energized by the task you’ve been given. You may also be just going through the motions – spending company time on Facebook or cruising random web sites or other social media platforms. Putting in your required hours does not mean you’re being productive. From my perspective there is no entitlement for the length of time on a job. Just because you’ve been around a while doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it your all. You have been created to use your Godgiven talents, abilities and experiences to make a difference in whatever you invest the hours of the life you’ve been given.

an assault on the enemy using air, land and sea, and to defeat the enemy on their home turf. Stephen Ambrose said of Gen. Eisenhower, “He was the most successful general of the greatest war ever fought.” Loftus identifies Ten Business Strategies: Determine Your Mission. Jack Trout once said, “The mission is not the mission s t a t e m e n t .” The mission is what you do, it is the reason your company exists, and it is Lead Like Ike your purpose Ten Business Stratefor being. The gies from the CEO of mission for D-Day E i s e n h o w e r Geoff Loftus was “uncondi- 280 pages tional surrender” of the enemy. Keep your mission simple, easy to understand and embrace. Then it’s more likely to succeed. Plan for Success. Eisenhower said, “Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” This requires high-level planning that sees the big picture and understands what needs to happen to accomplish the mission. When making

You have been created to use your God-given talents, abilities and experiences to make a difference We’ve gotten very good at dividing our lives up into compartments. We may have life labels called Work/Family/Play/Religion/Marriage/Neighbor, but we are made to be a whole person. We’re made to reflect our creator God wherever we are and in whatever we’re doing. We shouldn’t be one way at the movie theater and grocery store then act like another person at a restaurant or our place of work. A consistent life sends a strong message about what we believe. Conversely, an inconsistent life also sends a strong message, perhaps just not the one we desire. Many years ago I attended a FatherSon banquet with my Dad. The speaker was a motivator, encouraging all of us to exercise daily. For example, he encouraged us to park at a distance from our store or destination in order to build in some exercise each day (way before Fitbit existed!) It certainly got

Eisenhower said, “Plans are worthless, but planning is everything.” plans, it’s impossible to see every obstacle in the road, but by being skilled at planning, it becomes easier to plan to get around the trouble spots. There will be risks with every decision; do your best to identify and plan for them. Stay Focused. Focus on what is necessary for success. Focus is what produces winners. Prioritize. Do not waste time or resources on anything that is not mission critical. Know what matters and put it first. Plan to Implement. Define the plan of who, what, where, when and how to fulfill the mission. You train your people, equip them and provide all the support necessary to carry the team to victory. Communicate. You must communicate with your two primary audiences: Your people and your markets. If you can’t communicate well, you can’t implement. Great communication starts with your staff and continues out into

my young mind whirling. We lingered for a few minutes after the event to visit with the guys at our table. By the time we left, our speaker was also leaving. As we walked out of the gathering, I saw him hop into his car – just steps from the front door – making me doubt everything he had just told our group about intentional exercise! I’m not intending to “throw stones,” just sharing an example that I remember to this day. Here’s another great reminder of our call to excellence: And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. – Colossians 3:17. Steve Swanson serves as the station manager for Family Friendly 88.3 WAFJ. He’s invested 30-plus years in the world of radio and was named the Christian Music Broadcasters Program Director of the Year in 2009 and 2011. He and his wife , Susie, live in North Augusta.

the marketplace. Motivate Your People. Get your people to be as committed to the mission as you. How? You live it. It’s not enough to tell people to cheer up or have a good attitude, you must model it. Manage Your People. Discover and develop the talents and gifts hidden in your people. Challenge them. Promote them. Learn to deal with the prima donnas and drama queens. Avoid Project Creep. In the middle of the mission, Project Creep pops up to distract you from the real mission. It may closely resemble the mission, but it’s not. It is a time and resource stealer. You have to identify Project Creep and stay away from it. Be Honest. Eisenhower said, “I know only one method of operation. To be as honest with myself as I am with others.” You must be honest with yourself, your bosses, employees and your markets. Remember the old saying: Honesty is the best policy. Eddie Kennedy is the owner of Great Deals on Furniture in Augusta and an avid reader of business books. Eddie believes every business owner should invest in themselves by reading, but if you can’t, then read his column every month to see what he learned. Have you read any great business books? Let Eddie know at

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


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April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Smart phone break makes work go better MANHATTAN — Want to be more productive and happier during the workday? Try taking a short break to text a friend, play “Angry Birds” or check Facebook on your smartphone, according to Kansas State University research. In his latest research, Sooyeol Kim, doctoral student in  psychological sciences, found that allowing employees to take smartphone microbreaks may be a benefit — rather than a disruption — for businesses. Microbreaks are nonwork-related behaviors during working hours. Through a study of 72 full-time workers from various industries, Kim discovered that employees only spend an average of 22 minutes out of an eight-hour workday playing on their smartphones. He also found that employees who take smartphone breaks throughout the day are happier at the end of the workday. “A smartphone microbreak can be beneficial for both the employee and the organization,” Kim said. “For example, if I would play a game for an hour during my working hours, it would definitely hurt my work performance. But if I take short breaks of one or two minutes throughout the day, it could provide me with refreshment to do my job.” To study smartphone usage, Kim and collaborators developed an application that the 72 study participants installed on their

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It is difficult for an employee to concentrate for 8 straight hours without a break

smartphones. The app privately and securely measured the employees’ smartphone usage during work hours. The app also divided the employees’ smartphone usage into categories such as entertainment, which included games such as “Angry Birds” or “Candy Crush,” or social media, which included Facebook and Twitter. At the end of each workday, the participants recorded their perceived well-being. “By interacting with friends or family members through a smartphone or by playing a short game, we found that employees can recover from some of their stress to refresh their minds and take a break,” Kim said. Taking a break throughout the workday is important because it is difficult — and nearly impossible — for an employee to concentrate for eight straight hours a day without a break, Kim said. Smartphone microbreaks are similar to other microbreaks through-

out the workday: chatting with coworkers, walking around the hallway or getting a cup of coffee. Such breaks are important because they can help employees cope with the demands of the workplace. “These days, people struggle with a lot of different types of stressors, such as work demands, time scheduling, family issues or personal life issues,” Kim said. “We need to understand how we can help people recover

and cope with stressors. Smartphones might help and that is really important not only for individuals, but for an organization, too.” The smartphone research is part of Kim’s overall research that focuses on workplace microbreaks. His adviser is YoungAh Park, assistant professor of psychological sciences. Kim presented the research at the 29th annual Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology Conference in May.

Despite rumors of demise, Steeplechase says it will go on Despite a swirl of rumors, the Spring Steeplechase event held March 21 in Aiken will not be the last. According to a news release, the Aiken Steeplechase Association, which has hosted the Steeplechase events in Aiken since 1930, does not plan to end this Aiken tradition. There are potential changes in store, though. The Aiken Horse Park Foundation intends to create a horse show facility at Bruce’s Field at the Aiken Horse Park, the location of Aiken’s Spring and Fall Steeplechase events, with ground preparation beginning almost immediately. The Aiken Horse Park will be making extensive modifications throughout the property and the

changes and additions will drastically affect parking for future Steeplechase events. “We are grateful to the Aiken Horse Park Foundation for postponing the commencement of this work until after our spring event,” Aiken Steeplechase Association President Albert Bostwick said. “As to future events at this location, we will be assessing the impact the proposed changes will have on the venue to determine the suitability of this field for future race meets.” The question that remains is where future race meets will be held. The association is currently considering all options should the Aiken Horse Park changes render the field unsuitable for the Steeplechase events.

MOTHER DAUGHTER continued from page 1 Smith’s corporate career as a sales rep, however, limited the time she was able to spend with her family. She had a passion for local businesses, as well as the desire to provide a less hectic, more customer-oriented shopping experience. Smith opened the store in response to the rapid economic growth in Columbia County and a distinct lack of what she calls “the hometown shopping experience.” Intent on creating a concept that celebrated the return of local business to the CSRA, the idea for Crickets Dry Goods – a business that provides classic accents for the Southern lifestyle – was born and brought to fruition. Located at 4446 Washington Road, Suite 14, and open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday, the new store has seen consistent business over the past six months. “My mother was always in small business, and I grew up watching it,” Alison said. “I went into corporate for several years, and now I’ve been in both worlds and seen both sides. I know the pros and cons of both. At this stage of my life, with the age of my kids, I prefer to be in business for myself. It’s a better balance of work and family for me.” Her mother, Susan, on the other hand, has been involved with local family-owned businesses for 40 years. Susan worked for her own mother until 1992, when she took over the family business after her father’s death.

Susan and Alison each bring unique skill sets to Crickets, and admit that they’re learning from each other.

“I guess I sort of grew up in it,” Susan said of her experience in the floral business. “My mother had a store, and I had worked for others previously. When she opened her store, I went to work for her. After that, it just evolved.” Working part-time for her daughter is different, but enjoyable, according to Susan. She’s able to spend time with her daughter and her grandchildren, and doesn’t have quite as much to worry about on the business end of things. If Madison or Kate Lee have an event after school, either Alison or her mother will pick them up and make sure they get where they need to be, while the other watches the store. Susan and Alison each bring unique skill sets to Crickets, and the two women readily admit that they’re learning from each other. Alison has an abundance of sales and marketing experience, and Susan offers decades of business savvy, bookkeeping and analysis. There are some major differences with the way small businesses today run and advertise – mainly technology and social media – but both Alison and Susan feel the generational contrast is an advantage.

“I think different ages bring different things to the table,” Susan said. “We tell each other what we think. I try to help her with the bookkeeping and analyzing what we need to be doing day-to-day. She’s more in the marketing communication part of the business. It relieves the responsibility of everything on one person. As time goes on, things evolve, and she’ll pick up on all of the things she’s got to do.” Daughters Madison and Kate Lee have dived right into the family business as well. The two girls were involved in the process from day one, according to Smith. “When I pick them up from school, they ask if we’re going to Crickets. We shop, pick stuff out for the store, I get their opinion on things. They help price, they hang things up, because they love to help out.” Alison isn’t sure at this point if her daughters will be involved in the business as they get older, but she says it wouldn’t surprise her. “Probably this one,” she said, gesturing to Kate Lee, who sits behind the counter with her mother. “She’s my little fashionista. I could see Madison doing some of it too. She helps me pick things out from vendors.”

The moment Alison realized that Crickets Dry Goods had become a reality came when she was stocking the store with the items that she and her family had picked out, on the racks, tables, and shelving that they had all built together. “You start putting stuff in the store and you realize, ‘Oh my goodness, I need more,’” she said. “We put a lot of work into this place. My husband helped build things – there’s this big table made from a pallet that we stained, for example – and as we evolved, I kept saying ‘I just need you to do one more thing.’ He just laughs now when I say that because it’s never just one more thing. It’s a running joke between us.” Alison, her mother, and her daughters carefully selected the store’s inventory, featuring as many products from the immediate area as possible. Hand-forged metal jewelry, hand-painted picture frames, local honey, soaps made with beer, and wooden rolling pins and bowls made from trees that fell in last year’s ice storm are among the store’s top sellers. “We’ve been trying to bring in a variety of things,” Alison said. “Everyone helps out. It helps the family, but she can also help me with the business and give me her advice. I value her business sense. We’ve got my age group, Mom’s age group, and the girls’ age group. What’s been fun about having the store is having three generations involved.”

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Businessperson of the Month P.J. Campanaro, Attorney at Law

Going the Distance P.J. Campanaro spends her days working cases and her offtimes running races

By Gary Kauffman Pretending to be a lawyer in college got Portland (P.J.) Campanaro hooked on the real thing. Campanaro was an English major at the University of Tennessee when she participated in a mock trial and got to pretend she was an attorney. She enjoyed it so much she decided to pursue a new career. After graduating from Tennessee and then the Cumberland School of Law, she worked for the district attorney’s office in Knoxville, as well as for the state handling estate forfeitures. Shortly after her marriage, her husband was transferred to Augusta. Campanaro worked her list of law school contacts and soon landed a job in the solicitor’s office in Augusta. She spent six years there working as a prosecutor. So when in May 2010 she decided to open her own practice, she found herself on the other side of the courtroom. Now she handles criminal defense, domestic and family law, medical malpractice and personal injury cases. “I thought it’d be a hard transition,” she said. “But it really wasn’t. When I was a prosecutor I always tried to look at the defense side and figure out what they might do.” Now she puts in jam-packed days of court appearances, meeting with clients and responding to phone calls, emails and text messages. She’s also the mother of two daughters, ages 6 and 3. “I have to be in several places at once,” she joked. Still, she found time two years ago to participate in the Half-Ironman. She ran a full marathon in Savannah and competed in several half-marathons. Running is a form of therapy. “It helps keep me a little bit sane,” she said. “When I don’t do it I go a little crazy.” She is also involved in raising funds for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and has developed an innovative approach to fundraising. On May 7 she will host a male revue at Chevy’s Nightclub with emcee Neil Gordon. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Details on the event can be found on Campanaro’s Facebook page. What are you passionate about in your job? When I’m able to help somebody who couldn’t have been helped otherwise. And I love an actual jury trial. There’s a little bit of an adrenaline rush, a lot of stress and high intensity. When you have a victory it feels great. As a prosecutor I got more opportunity to try cases. My trials as a defense attorney have been in federal court.

Do you get to investigate cases and find the hidden clues that keep your innocent client from going to jail, like on TV? In my experience that doesn’t really happen. It seems like it’d be wonderful. We do have investigators that we can hire but unless there’s a jury trial it’s a lot more boring than on TV. Do people underestimate you in the courtroom? I try to be as civil and cordial as possible so when it comes to the trial I may have a little different personality. That may be a surprise to some. There are a lot of female attorneys but I feel we do have to do more to be considered competent. How do you unwind?

Some cases are harder to get out of my head than others. Running or exercising is the best way. But I have two kids and that helps me. They don’t care what’s happening in the courtroom, which is refreshing. They just care that I’m there. If your life had a theme song, what would it be? Girl is on Fire by Alicia Keys. I’m doing fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and that’s my theme song for that. Seeing what you do in the courtroom, do you have hope for our society? From the family law perspective you see some really bad stuff, almost worse than the criminal cases. But when you deal with the people, you find that most people are inherently

good. They just do some bad things or make bad decisions. What keeps you motivated to do your job? My kids. I want them to know they can be successful – they can have a business, have kids and be whatever they want to be. What does the future hold for you? I’d like to continue in private business and grow my practice, have some associates that work for me. Maybe a judgeship later on. That’s something I’ve always thought about. A plaque provided by Cudos4u, Awards and Promotions, your hometown favorite for Awards and Promotional Products, (706) 7220010, will be given to P.J. Campanaro on behalf of Buzz on Biz.

SRNS helps veterans make transition to civilian life The transition from years of service in the U.S. armed forces to a normal work life in America can be difficult, particularly for soldiers returning from active duty involving overseas conflicts.

28 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

To assist them with this transition, Savannah River Nuclear Solutions and the Savannah River Archaeological Research Program recently invited a group of military veterans to visit the Savannah River Site’s Curation Facility. The visit was part of

the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Veterans Curation Program, which provides veterans with tangible work skills and experience through the rehabilitation and preservation of federally-owned archaeological collections.

The VCP employs veterans for up to five months. Work products developed in archaeological curation readily translate to entry level skill sets for the fields of forensics, administrative duties and museum and records management.

Janet Baumgardner, Comfort Keepers...............................30 Ashley Wheatley, Greenbrier Veterinary Services..............30 Christine Hall & Amanda Schuyler, Hall & Assoc.............31 Kim Romaner, Transworld Business Advisors...................32 Dena Thomas, Advanced Services......................................32 Judy Gill, Caring Together..................................................33 Ann Helms, Fogel’s Fine Floors..........................................34 Deena Youngblood, Learning, Laughter & Love................34 Robyn Kelley, Trendz Salon................................................35 Donna Martin & Samantha Bodie, Martin Wilson............36 Judy Chun, Vistage..............................................................36

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Upcoming Business Events Friday, April 17

A.M. Connection Economic Development Road Map hosted by the North Augusta Chamber of Commerce, North Augusta Community Center (495 Brookside Ave). 7:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. Advance registration is required. Members: $15, Non-Members: $25 - includes breakfast & program. Those arriving without reservations pay the walk-in rate – Members: $25, Non-Members: $35. Presenters: Todd Glover,City Administrator, North Augusta, and Will Williams, Director, Economic Development Partnership. This update will focus on the most current economic development opportunities in the area and how local leaders are addressing them. Ribbon Cut – University Primary Care, Fury’s Ferry, 3851 Evans to Locks Road, Suite 113, in Martinez. 12- 1 p.m.

Monday, April 20

Riverwalk Toastmasters, Public Speaking and Leadership Meeting, University Hospital Education Wing, third floor, classroom 3, 7 p.m.

Tuesday, April 21

Women in Business, The Legends Club (National Hills Shopping Center, 2701 Washington Rd., Augusta), 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., $30 for North Augusta Chamber Members, $40 for non-members. Topic: “Money Matters” Keynote speaker: Meg Depalma with Prudential Securities.

Wed., April 22

SuCCesful Superwoman’s Brunch, Savannah Rapids Pavilion, Business showcase 11 a.m., lunch and program, 12 p.m., $35 for Columbia County Chamber members, $50 non-member. Topic: “Surviving the Superwoman Syndrome: Learn how to say no so you can say yes to a happier, healthier life!” Keynote speaker: Dale Smith Thomas.

Thursday, April 23

2015 Post-Session Legislative Breakfast, Augusta Marriott Hotel & Suites,2 10th Street, Augusta, 7:30-9:00 a.m., Free to North Augusta Chamber Members, $25 for non-members, Reservations Requested. Join the Augusta Metro Chamber of Commerce and the elected officials for our annual PostSession Legislative Breakfast.

Women In Business: Presentation Skills: From Fear to Fearless, Palmetto Terrace,100 Georgia Avenue, North Augusta. Workshop: 2-5 p.m., Social & Networking: 5-6 p.m. North Augusta Chamber of Commerce Members: $25, Non-members: $35. Advance registration is required. This workshop will help participants discover how to craft presentations around essential objectives, present key concepts and ideas with power and enthusiasm, design and present effective visuals, and employ techniques for polishing and mastering presentation delivery. Presented by Patricia Allen, North Augusta Chamber Board Member. Northaugustachamber. org

Friday, April 24

15th Anniversary Ribbon Cut – PRA Publishing, Columbia County Chamber Office (1000 Business Boulevard, in Evans), 9 -10 a.m.,

Saturday, April 25

CSRA Credit Union Free Shred Day, 2574 Tobacco Road, Hephzibah, 9 a.m. – noon. Take advantage of safe and secure on-site shredding provided by Records Management to properly dispose of all old and unwanted personal documents. Open to the public. Maximum 500 lbs. No 3-ring binders or binder clips. Columbiacountychamber. com

Tuesday, April 28

Ribbon Cut – Harrington Park Health & Rehabilitation, 511 Pleasant Home Road, in Augusta, located near Walton Way Extension and Davis Road. 4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. Food will be served.

Saturday, May 2

Free shredding event from Libra Organizing, The Cleveland Group, CPAs parking lot on Davis Road (3740 Executive Center Dr #200, Augusta), 8-11a.m., Dispose of sensitive papers! Unlimited, on-site shredding, refreshments and organizing tips – all free. Shredding and recycling provided by Augusta Data Storage.

Wednesday, May 6

Membership 101, Columbia County Chamber Office, 1000 Business Blvd, Evans, 8:30-9:30a.m.,If you are a new Chamber member or just want a refresher course, plan to attend the Membership 101 Class.

Register at

Friday, May 8

Ribbon Cut – Medical Weight and Wellness Specialists of Augusta, 108 SRP Drive, Suite B, in Evans, located near the intersection of Cox and North Belair, behind the new Waffle House and SRP Credit Union. 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Food will be served.

Monday, May 11

2015 First Bank Chamber Golf Classic, Gordon Lakes Golf Courses, Range Road, Building 537, Fort Gordon, 11 a.m. Registration and Practice, 12 p.m. Lunch, 5 p.m. Awards/Dinner Reception. Visit www.northaugustachamber. org for pricing and registration.

Tuesday, May 12

2015 Technology Fair hosted by the Pollock Company, Augusta Marriott Convention Center (2 10th St, Augusta) The event will feature the latest document solutions including: high speed production printing systems, workgroup multi-functional color printers, advanced cost effective mailing solutions, document archiving-management software, and more. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Wednesday, May 13

2015 Technology Fair hosted by the Pollock Company, Augusta Marriott Convention Center (2 10th St, Augusta) The event will feature the latest document solutions including: high speed production printing systems, workgroup multi-functional color printers, advanced cost effective mailing solutions, document archiving-management software, and more. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Thursday, May 14

Executive Welcome Morning Mixer, Augusta Museum of History, 560 Reynolds Street, Augusta, 7:30-9 a.m., The Augusta Metro Chamber presents Executive Welcome, a breakfast mixer to welcome and honor new executives in the community. Each featured executive will have an opportunity to introduce themselves and speak about their responsibilities and interests. Following the introductions, our members will have a unique opportunity to network with our new executives over a continental breakfast. Reservations


Saturday, May 16

“Pie Your Favorite Celebrity” benefitting Children’s Miracle Network, Costco Wholesale of Augusta (825 Alexander Dr., Augusta, GA). 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Costco will be hosting a “Pie Your Favorite Celebrity” event. They are looking for “Celebrity Volunteers” willing to sit in the store for a 30-minute increment. Members, family, friends and co-workers will have the opportunity to purchase a “whip cream pie” and throw it at their favorite celebrity all in the name of fun and fundraising for Children’s Miracle Network (CMN). All money raised will go to our local CMN Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Georgia. The “pies” can cost as much as you (or the celebrity you nominate) choose, with a starting amount of $5. For more information contact Samantha H. Stough, Augusta Costco Wholesale Marketing Manager at 706-739-1719.

Monday, May 18

Columbia County Chamber After Hours sponsored by American Family Insurance, 4446 Washington Road, Suite 16, Evans, 5-7 p.m. An after hours event designed for members to meet and build relationships with other business people of small to large companies and organizations in the Columbia County area. Columbiacountychamber. com

Tuesday, May 19

Women in Business, The Legends Club (National Hills Shopping Center, 2701 Washington Rd., Augusta) 11:30 a.m. -1 p.m. Augusta Metro Chamber Members: $30, Non-Members: $40. Topics: “6 Keys to Growing Your Business” Keynote Speaker: Kim Romaner with Transworld Business Advisors.

Wednesday, May 20

Business Academy – Social Media & How It Affects Your Business, Southern Wesleyan University,Business Technology Center, 802 East Martintown Road, Suite 101,North Augusta. 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. A free workshop to learn more about Social Media and how it affects your business. Hosted by the North Augusta Chamber of Commerce, Southern Wesleyan University, and your local SCORE chapter. April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Career and Education

Labor commissioner emphasizes getting people back to work By Gary Kauffman Known for years as the place that doles out unemployment benefits, the Georgia Department of Labor now wants a different reputation – the place that puts people back to work. “We don’t want to be called the unemployment office, we want you to call us the employment office,” Labor Commissioner Mark Butler told a group of Augusta business representatives at The Pinnacle Club several weeks ago. “Our focus is to get people back to work.” Butler’s visit was hosted by the Augusta Economic Development Authority. Butler praised Augusta for putting people to work, noting that the area’s job creation rate exceeds the national rate. “Don’t get hung up on the unemployment rate,” he said. “Those numbers aren’t nearly as important as the job creation numbers.” Not only did Augusta’s job growth exceed expectations last year, so did the entire state’s. Butler said that over the last four years Georgia ranks fifth in the nation in job growth. The top concern of any company locating in Georgia, or even thinking about locating in the state, is finding the workforce

it needs to be successful. Butler said that is why the Department of Labor – although still providing unemployment benefits – is changing its focus from unemployment to employment. But that is more complicated than merely taking an unemployed person and slotting them into an open job. “The No. 1 complaint I’ve heard from businesses is that it’s not just finding people with the right training and the right degrees, they want people with ‘soft skills,’” he said. Soft skills are such things as showing up on time, having a good attitude, getting along with others and doing the job right. “My grandfather had another term for it – ‘common sense,’” Butler said. “These types of skills seem to be slipping away, not just in Georgia but in the whole country.” To help create a workforce with better soft skills, the Department of Labor created a program called Georgia Best. It works with high school students to develop the soft skills. If they earn enough points they are certified as being Georgia Best, which may help them find employment faster. Another need of companies coming to Georgia is the ability to hire the right people quickly. Butler said sometimes it can take a

Health Careers Dr. Brad Steinle

Career Choice

Chiropractic career combines medicine and business Operating a small business in this economy is a difficult undertaking wrought with financing, marketing and customer satisfaction. Becoming successful as a doctor possesses its own challenges, including staying up to date on the latest health issues and treating many patients with sometimes serious health conditions. A chiropractor has an interesting role in today’s society, in that he or she must be able to run a small business and

40 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

company six to eight months to identify and hire the people it needs. The Department of Labor can help with that, too. Butler used the example of one company that needed to fill 100 jobs. Butler’s office organized a job fair that brought in 1,600 applications for those jobs. That presented a dilemma, because the company had only two people in its Human Resources department. The Department of Labor brought in 40 to 50 people to help sort through the list of applicants. “Within a month we got them the best of the best,” Butler said. “They told us we probably saved them a quarter of a million dollars.” But the overriding goal is how to make the unemployed employable again. Butler said that requires a collaborative effort. “We have almost a lost generation,” he said. “It can’t just be the government. As a community we need to take steps to get them out there and be productive again.” He said often people become unemployable through a bad decision, or a series of bad decisions. Identifying the cause of those bad decisions and finding ways to correct them is an important first step. Butler also said mentoring programs are needed.

also perform as a doctor. The path to becoming a chiropractor is a laborious one. Those who wish to pursue the profession must first attend an undergraduate program before being accepted into chiropractic school. Chiropractic school is (in most states) a four-year degree. During that time, students take thousands of hours of classes in many different subjects, including basic sciences as well as human anatomy and spinal biomechanics. Business classes are also part of the curriculum at many of the schools to help the student have an understanding of how to open and manage a chiropractic clinic. The average chiropractic student will graduate from school with approximately $180,000 of debt, not including previous undergraduate costs. At the time of graduation a ‘grace period’ begins, in which the graduate has six months before student loan repayments begin. During this time the chiropractor must make a very tough decision: Is it wiser to open my own practice or work for an already functioning office? There are pros and cons to both sides of this question.

In terms of opening a practice out of school the graduate must consider how he or she will get the money needed to procure a location, chiropractic adjusting equipment, computers and to pay staff for the beginning months when business is bound to be slow. However, there is a risk to working in another chiropractor’s office. He or she may run the business different from how the recent graduate personally envisioned. Also, negotiating a decent wage can be difficult and earning enough to later open a business may not be possible. Chiropractic is a rewarding profes-

Dumpster Depot, Goodwill join in jobs program Goodwill’s Aiken Job Connection, in partnership with Dumpster Depot, has initiated a new training program that will provide hands-on training, as well as national certification and promising career prospects for participants. The five-week training initiative, which initially started with seven trainees identified through the Snap2Work program from the South Carolina Department of Social Services, will prepare participants for credentials from the Manufacturing Skill Standards Council as Certified Logistics Associates or Certified Logistics Technicians. Each of the trainees will spend 30 hours per week in a combination of classroom teaching and experiential learning opportunities through a key partnership with Dumpster Depot, which will provide hands-on training for the participants in warehousing and logistics at the company’s recycling and logistics business divisions. In addition to their collaboration with Goodwill, Dumpster Depot was recently awarded the Greater Aiken Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business of the Year award.

sion, but it definitely comes with its struggles. I would recommend chiropractic for those that are hardworking and responsible. There is little room for error when it comes to managing a person’s health as well as running a business. The aspiring chiropractor must be willing to dedicate a great deal of time and energy into the program in order for the reward to be great. Dr. Brad Steinle practices out of Advanced Chiropractic and Wellness Center, His office is located at 122 Old Evans Road, Martinez, GA. Find him online at or contact him by phone at (706) 738-7731.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Career and Education Barry Paschal

Pushing No to Yes There are many ways to get colleges to say yes to you Sometimes you just can’t take no for an answer. Budding novelists know it’s tough to get that first book accepted by a publisher. Rejection letters become a matter of routine – or, for writers who become successful, a matter of triumphant “told-you-so.” Stephen King fits in that category. Thirty publishers rejected Carrie before Doubleday took a chance and bought it. They, and King, were richly rewarded as a result. Carrie almost never had the chance for rejection. King, who then was supplementing his teaching salary by writing short stories for men’s magazines, had been trying to write a story with a female lead character after a reader’s challenge. He gave up after a few pages and tossed it in the trash; if not for his wife retrieving the pages and urging him to continue, King might never have become one of the world’s top novelists. The latest person to earn a share of fame for rejection,

however, is 17-year-old high school student Siobhan O’Dell. Social media lit up recently with her story of, well, rejecting rejection. O’Dell was among many students turned down for freshman admission by prestigious Duke University. Rather than merely accepting her rejection, however, O’Dell sent Duke a letter – rejecting their rejection. “I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your refusal to offer me admission,” O’Dell wrote. “Therefore, I will be attending Duke University’s 2015 freshman class.” Cheeky, yes. Successful? We’ll see. Certainly, O’Dell isn’t alone in receiving rejection letters from universities that receive more prospective student applications than there is space available. The question, then, is how do seniors improve their chances of being admitted to the college or university of their choice? According to a former Yale admissions counselor, quoted in Forbes magazine, the four best ways to boost acceptance are to start early with course selection; gradually take harder courses throughout the high school career; work diligently on admission essays; and demonstrate interest in the specific school with visits and interviews. Of course, those tips are best applied to kids just getting ready to leave middle school. For seniors getting ready to graduate in May, it’s a little late to go back in time and choose tougher courses. For that matter, it’s far too late

Career and Education Missie Usry

Double Time

Dual enrollment can save students time and money Did you know that your high school juniors or seniors have options for getting ahead on earning college credit? The dual enrollment program, also known as ACCEL in Georgia, allows high school students to enroll at a college or university using state ACCEL funding. Specific courses will earn the student required credit towards high school graduation and college simultaneously.

42 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

The ACCEL dual enrollment program has several distinct advantages over other college credit programs such as Advanced Placement (AP) and the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program. For example, students are guaranteed college credit as long as they pass courses with a grade of “C” or better. In AP or IB courses, if the teen is not a strong tester, they may pass the course, but not pass the difficult endof-course standardized test required for college credit. An additional advantage is that the SACS accreditation makes our credits transferrable to colleges across the country. This is particularly helpful for homeschool students who are concerned about admissions into college with a homeschool diploma because they will be considered a transfer student rather than a first-time freshman when applying to other colleges. Many colleges will not require a high school diploma after a student has earned a specified number of college credits. Through the dual enrollment program at Georgia Military College, high

to even apply for fall admission for most major colleges or universities; those deadlines were months ago. However, there are still many options available for seniors who have just decided college might be a better option than a lifetime of low-skilled employment opportunities. Community colleges and technical and career education options deserve far more attention. Major universities might lend significant prestige, but they also carry high price tags that can leave graduates saddled with a crushing debt load. And it’s only getting worse as tuition rates continue to climb.

school juniors and seniors have the option of earning more than 80 quarter hours of college credit before graduating from high school. That means up to two years of free college tuition that saves a family who does not qualify for financial aid! Georgia’s ACCEL program covers tuition of up to $1,333 per quarter for three quarters per year at GMC for Georgia residents. Recently, our administration voted to waive out-ofpocket expenses like textbook rental fees for participants. This means a GMC dual enrollment student can attend for three quarters completely free, whereas most colleges with dual enrollment programs require the family to absorb the remaining cost of tuition, fees, and textbooks. Georgia Military College has a fourth quarter, allowing dual enrollment students who have attended the previous three consecutive quarters to apply for a full-tuition scholarship for spring term. Students who successfully complete the first three quarters through ACCEL with an excellent GPA may qualify. This means a savings

The good news for seniors, then, is that while big-time universities might say “no” to the Siobhan O’Dells of the world, there are plenty of community colleges, technical colleges and career colleges ready to say “yes” and give students access to a great education at an affordable cost. Barry L. Paschal is Senior Director of Marketing and Communication for Goodwill Industries of Middle Georgia and the CSRA, parent organization of Helms College, an accredited culinary college offering associate degree and one-year diploma programs at campuses in Augusta and Macon. Learn more at, or call 844GO HELMS.

of more than $10,000 in college tuition, fees, and books when students successfully participate in this program during their junior and senior years. For more eligibility information, including eliminating the need for the SAT or ACT to enroll, and to tour Georgia Military College’s Augusta campus located at 115 Davis Road in Martinez, stop by during our spring open house on Saturday, April 18 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. There will be members of the admissions and financial aid teams available to discuss dual enrollment, first-time freshman, and transfer admissions, as well as financial aid options for all students. The Southern Association of Colleges accredits Georgia Military College and Schools, which means that all credit earned at the institution is transferable to other accredited schools. Missie Usry heads up the Admissions department and advises the Community Involvement Club at Georgia Military College’s Augusta campus. For questions about Georgia Military College, call 706.993.1123 or visit our website at www.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


44 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

Rock n’ Roll Buzz Jonathan Karow

Talented Voice

Beth Spangler pursues her dream of a music career The Central Savannah River Area has a rich history of popular musicians and performing artists, including opera great Jessye Norman; The Godfather of Soul, James Brown; guitarist extraordinaire Steve Morse (Deep Purple); country singer and pianist Terri Gibbs; multi-award winning country artist Lady Antebellum; and numerous others. Aiken native Beth Spangler now joins that list. She has not only been the talk of the town, she has been a nationally recognized vocalist and performer on the popular NBC television hit series The Voice, among other prestigious performances. She has also been keeping busy since her television performances furthering her dreams and catapulting her career to stardom. I recently talked with Beth for an hour, which went by in a flash because we both have common interests in the medical profession, playing drums, music and the performing arts. I was aware of Beth long before her performances on

Spangler in one of the “turn” chairs on The Voice.

The Voice. She could be seen doing performances around our area and in Atlanta, singing with partners, solo and even occasional karaoke events. Beth took every opportunity to perform while she attended South Aiken High. She had a high school friend who meant the world to her that she would commonly sing with. Unfortunately, her friend died but she still considers him a mentor as well as a major drive to continue performing in his spirit. “His parents are still extremely supportive of what I do to this day,” Beth said. “They will always be family to me.” Beth’s musical performances started early. Her father, who was a drummer, was relocated from Harrisburg, Va., to work for the Savannah River Site when Beth was about a year old. They have lived in Aiken ever since and Beth showed an interest in playing drums. She ended up playing drums at her church in her teenage years. “I still play drums,” she said. “In fact, I just got done with a drum lesson with the drummer in my band.” Some of her early singing influences included Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey and Ray Charles, all of whom had strong vocal influence as well as meaningful lyrical content. Beth got a job at Georgia Regents University Children’s Hospital of Georgia in the Radiology Department because of her love for children. She worked at CHOG for more than five years while she continued pursuing her ultimate love, music. She was open with friends and family about wanting to move forward with music, which would require leaving CHOG. Some were supportive while others felt she was making an impractical move by leaving a solid medical profession. I told Beth, “This sounds all too familiar to me. I worked at Medical College of Georgia (now renamed GRU) for over a decade as a Dialysis Technician and a CNA on 3 North. I went through the exact same struggle.” Ultimately we both made the same move to pursue a career in music though scorned mostly by concerned elders. “I can help heal people through my music and performing,” Beth said. “I still have a broad following and I want to portray a positive light to influence kids to adults both through my lyrics and my demeanor.”

Beth Spangler performed on the The Voice, surviving into the Battle Rounds. Photos courtesy of Beth Spangler and NBC

During her stint on The Voice, Beth had the opportunity to work with Adam Levine as well as Gwen Stefani. “Adam Levine was very focused on vocal technique,” Beth said. But it was Stefani she talks about with excitement. “Gwen Stefani is even more beautiful in person!” Beth said. “She is captivating. Gwen is one of the kindest, humblest and most creative people I’ve ever met. It was a bit hard not to feel star-struck but Gwen was immediately easy to work with. She shared advice about letting go on stage, not over thinking things and honing in on my honest emotions. She was also focused on overall stage performance as well as image.” Some of Beth’s current influences include Christina Aguilera, Tori Kelly and Justin Timberlake. She recently performed a sold-out show at the Aiken Community Playhouse, which was her first full production concert as a solo artist. She has also performed at the famous Atlanta Tabernacle, won a Belk Music Showcase and is in the final stages of her debut EP (extended play recording), brilliantly titled “Audio Selfie.” I immediately took the title to mean “a musical moment in time.” Beth agreed with my perspective on the meaning though, as with any art, an album title can have multiple meanings. She seemed pleased that I understood her meaning without it being “spoon fed.” I asked, “What demographic would you consider your music?”

“Pop/Soul,” she said. “We are really focusing on five or six solid songs on this EP. We really want to bring intellectual lyrics and substance back to music. One of the songs we are recording even includes a string section.” I couldn’t help but chime in (with goosebumps and a smile), “I have always loved how Motown, The Beatles, The Eagles, Neil Diamond and even the 1976 KISS Destroyer album from my childhood utilized strings and orchestra and even choirs in their compositions.” Beth will continue writing and co-producing with her keyboard/piano player Xavier O’Connor, who is also Beth’s music director and tour manager. She feels blessed to be working with experts in the music industry who also work with critically acclaimed artists like Usher, Beyoncé, Justin Bieber and others. My closing question to Beth was, “Is there any one person or people you would like to thank or highlight?” Without hesitation she responded, “The entire CSRA community, both before and after my opportunity to perform on The Voice. Everyone has been so supportive and continues to be.” Jonathan Karow is the owner/founder of Rock Bottom Music in Augusta and an active musician. He has handled artist relations and concert promotions for internationally recognized musicians for more than two decades. He is also a consultant and product development designer for famous brand instrument manufacturers.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Business Lunch Review Giuseppe’s Alexandrea Daitch

Ideal Italian

Giuseppe’s does Italian right, especially the cannoli “Holy cannoli, that’s some good Italian!” Since 1993 Giuseppe’s has been serving Augusta incredible Italian food. Family owned, this small establishment really offers something grander, an experience of a family trattoria. Giuseppe’s has everything one looks for in a business lunch spot: Great food, check; affordability, check; atmosphere, check; excellent staff, check. The only thing that’s missing is that you are not in Italy. Growing up, I was a lover of spaghetti and I still am today. At every Italian restaurant I go to I order spaghetti with meat sauce or marinara sauce. I have been doing this for about 15 years so I judge a restaurant based on how they cook their spaghetti. Well, Giuseppe’s didn’t disappoint. I was very pleased with how the spaghetti was cooked and with the texture of the meat sauce. They also gave me plenty of sauce because I tend to coat my spaghetti in it. I happened to

Travel Margaret Centers

Salzburg Serenade

Scenes from Sound of Music still vivid in Austria visits When the Sound of Music hit the theaters 50 years ago it was an instant smash hit. It showed America the beauty and grandeur of the Alps, a country’s struggle against oppression and a sound track for the ages. But, after seeing it for our first time, my two sisters and

46 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

spill some of the sauce on my outfit and that is how I knew the spaghetti was on point – because I was eating it so fast that I got sauce everywhere. My coworker went with the buffet that Giuseppe’s offers Tuesday through Friday. He thoroughly enjoyed the variety of pizzas on the buffet and went back several times. All the sauces are homemade, and the pizza dough is made fresh in-house every morning. My second coworker ordered the cheese calzone with pepperoni and mushrooms and, boy, was it a hearty meal. He couldn’t even finish it all because it was so large. All three of us hardly spoke when our meals came to the table because we were enjoying the food so much. Last but not least, we all split the cannolis for dessert and let me tell you, “holy cannoli!” They are to die for. I could eat a whole plate of them. You must get their cannolis! Giuseppe’s was packed with business men and women from the surrounding businesses on Wheeler Road, yet in our individual booth it was very intimate. We were able to have full conversations with-

out noticing the surrounding tables. I highly recommend this restaurant for lunch. Not only does it have a great atmosphere for a business meeting, but the prices are also very reasonable. Both lunch and dinner portions are

available on the menu. I will be venturing back there very soon for another amazing dish of spaghetti and cannolis. This time, though, I will not be sharing my cannolis with anyone.

I couldn’t wait for our father to return from a military deployment so that we could take him to see the movie. We had, just a few years earlier, lived in southern Germany and our parents had taken the three of us to Salzburg – the birthplace of Mozart. As we explored the city, encircled by mountains and straddling the river Salzach, we found the beautiful Austrian city has a dramatic setting that matches its own baroque splendor. As we watched the movie unfold we were transfixed and taken back in time as we watched the Von Trapp children gaily prance around Residenz Fountain, listened to them sing while riding in one of the same carriages we witnessed, clapped along to the song, Do-Re-Mi while they hopped up the stairs of the Mirabell Palace and held our breath as they began their flight to America in the St. Peter’s Cemetery. There are so many more sights to see in Salzburg – the pavilion in Hellbrunn Palace (I am 16 going on 17), castles, lakes, a river, and the twin-towered

church of Mondsee, where they filmed the wedding. The euro is still dropping and now is a great time to book your trip. Before you depart make sure you’ve included in your itinerary the official “Sound of Music Tour.” It’s not uncommon for the group to burst out into some of the film’s favorite songs while stopping at locations of the movie.

I’ve been back since but always am ready to revisit the sites I visited with my family over 50 years ago. Auf Wiedersehen.



Margaret Centers is the owner of Margaret’s Travel, www.margaret’ She worked for Morris Travel for nearly 20 years and formed her own agency in 2010. For questions or bookings call 706-396-3769.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


An adventure for the taste buds Gas station becomes home for craft beer, vapors

By Gary Kauffman Marty Koger wants people be a little more adventurous with their taste buds. Koger recently “reinvented” his BP gas station at Belair and Washington roads in Evans as Tip Top Taps, a store that sells craft beer by the growler and howler, as well as vapors. The craft beers – 20 on tap, with a constantly changing selection – offer a variety of tastes not found in the mass-marketed brands sold in most stores. “People should open their palates to new experiences,” Koger said. “The people who created the beer, it’s their art. Most of my beers, you’re not going to find anywhere else.” Koger opened the store on April 2 and it has already proved a popular destination. One of the first things he had to do was educate people in the CSRA what growlers and howlers are. A growler is a 64-oz. brown-glass jug, while a howler holds 32 ounces. Patrons pay $5 for the initial growler or howler, plus the cost of the beer to fill it. After that, when they bring in their growler, they pay only for the cost of the beer. It’s a cost-effective way to enjoy new tastes. “If you get some of these beers in a restaurant, it’d be so much more expensive,” Koger said. The idea of Tip Top Taps was born partly

out of necessity and partly out of ingenuity. Koger, who owns four gas stations and a Dairy Queen in the CSRA, built the BP station in Evans in 1995. But as the area grew and people changed their gasoline buying habits, it became difficult to keep it going. After trying to sell it and getting no good offers, he realized his half-acre lot was still a prime location in Columbia County. “So I had to reinvent the store,” he said. At the urging of his wife and daughter, he traveled to Atlanta to investigate the growing growler trend and fell in love with the idea. While perusing pictures of Irish and English pubs, he realized that he could convert the look of the exterior to mimic a pub. With the creative help of architect Richard Fletcher and custom-built exterior moldings, he was able to create the look he wanted. He then installed the taps inside a cooler already in the store. The cooler is divided into four sections, so he placed five taps in each, making a convenient system for organizing the beers. Koger also decided to sell vapors for the growing trend of vapor cigarettes. “I don’t smoke so warming up to the idea of vapors took me down an education process,” he said. He found that the vapors were a far safer option than traditional cigarettes, containing nothing more harmful than what was found in the beer or the Dairy Queen products he sold. “I believe it truly is the future,” he said. “It is a better way, so I embraced it for my customers.” But it is the craft beers that Koger has become passionate about, and he has set up a system that he thinks will help others develop that passion as well. Digital menus mounted above the cooler

Good Spirits Ben Casella

Spring Suds

Brews that help make the transition to new season Through my last several years of young adulthood/old adolescence, I’ve learned a few quips along the way. One has been to purchase new clothes off-season.

48 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

Julian Cox fills a growler with craft beer at Tip Top Taps. Photo by Gary Kauffman

show customers the name of the beer, the type, the origination and alcohol content. It also shows how much is left in that particular keg, an important factor because Koger likes to change the beers he offers to give his customers the widest experience. “Whenever one (keg) blows, I replace it with a different one,” he said. “There are hundreds and hundreds of beers. I want my customers to come back to see what’s new.” Customers can sample the beers before

I know, I know. This adage has been in existence ever since some haberdasher put up a sign in the window that read “sale.” However, you have to realize the fact that you’re reading a column written by a guy who was folding the extra length of his braided belt into a knot well into the 2000s. Well, beer works the same way (sort of). If you snoop around long enough, you’re sure to find a bargain on leftover oatmeal stout or chocolate porter. The bargains tend to be hard to find, but they do exist. In fact, a few years ago, I was in a restaurant and stumbled upon a beer they “were trying to get rid of ” and were selling for $2 a pop. As it turned out, it was Founders Breakfast Stout. That, my friends, was a good day and, as I tend to live in the past this time of year by means of harkening back to the dark brews of yonder win-

deciding which one to buy in their growler or howler. And that’s where he urges a sense of adventure. “Familiarity should not be the limiter,” Koger said. And he knows first-hand that it works. “I was always intimidated to order something I didn’t know in a restaurant,” he said. “Now I have the confidence to do that.” To see the current available beers at Tip Top Taps, visit

ter, I realize that we must bridge the gap and transition into beers that go better with fried catfish than roasted hen. So, here we go. Founders Dark Penance Imperial Black India Pale Ale – Yeah, I know the first beer I chose to bridge the gap from winter to summer has the word “dark” in the title, but this Michigan brew is like the navy and white gingham button-down of beers: It goes with most things all year long. I enjoyed the strong hops of this black ale and found that the alcohol (to the tune of 8.9 percent) yielded just enough sweet and malty tinge to dampen my palate in time for another sip. All in all, this is another fine brew from Founders that, at the time of print, was available in four-packs at the White Horse. Terrapin Monster Beer Tour Hop

Selection IPA – An Imperial Double India Pale Ale from Athens, Ga. Well, Terrapin has taught us a thing or two on what to expect from the North Georgia Hills and, as usual, they don’t disappoint with Selection IPA. This one is probably not for the hop-heads, which is fine by me. Terrapin has Hopsecutioner to serve that purpose. This brew has a bit of red ale coupled with a bit of brown ale mixed in with a hoppy bite that reminds you of its craft but doesn’t leave you blackcherry-puckered. Try it with whole wheat penne and red sauce. Ben Casella does enjoy the occasional oatmeal stout in July. He even enjoys the occasional wheat beer in January. He wore a sweater on Easter and may still sport his seersuckers on Halloween. To quote Bill Parcells: “It is what it is.”

Over the Moon

Edgefield distillery expanding its line of liquors By Jennifer Reynolds Edgefield’s Carolina Moon Distillery recently launched its first bourbon, Tally Ho Bourbon Whiskey. Owner David Long said the name is a nod to Aiken and the generous support its community has shown the fledgling distillery. “Aiken is horse country,” said owner David Long. “Aiken has been really good to us. A lot of tourists come here from Aiken to see us. We decided that we would do something related to Aiken.” The label for Tally Ho features a huntsman complete with red coat and a pack of hounds as a symbol not only of Aiken’s long fox hunting tradition but as a representation of all the equestrian sports for which Aiken is famous. The distillery, opened in late 2013, by Long and two business partners, initially produced whiskey and corn whiskey, also called moonshine. Their business model called for them to add bourbon, rum and vodka as they progressed. Adding bourbon was a natural next step, since bourbon and whiskey are similar. “Bourbon is actually a sub-category of whiskey,” said Long referencing the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau standards for classifying alcohol. Carolina Moon Distillery’s Tally Ho bourbon made its debut in March. The young age of the business means that unlike some other bourbons, the Tally Ho bourbon has only been aged for six months. Long said that they plan to add longer-aged bourbons in the future. “We tell people that the older we get as a business, the older our bourbons and whiskeys will get. We aren’t old enough to have some six-year-old stuff yet,” he said. Adam Howard, manager of North Augusta Wine & Beverage, currently carries many of Carolina Moon Distillery’s spirits and plans to add Tally Ho as soon as it’s available from the distributor, which should be soon. He’s sampled Tally Ho and said, “It’s good. To me, it’s a great bourbon for cocktails.” Currently, his store carries all the Carolina Moon spirits that are available on the market including, “Rabbit Spit” 116-proof moonshine, fruit moonshines such as peach and cherry moonshine, and Black Betty Whiskey. Howard’s customers have responded

A few of Carolina Moon Distillery’s offerings available at North Augusta Wine & Beverage.

strongly to the Carolina Moon liquors. He said customers particularly like “Rabbit Spit,” the 116 proof-moonshine. It’s the highest proof that he carries. “When it comes to moonshine, everybody’s looking for the highest proof that’s the smoothest and that seems to be the best on the market, or at least what I have in my store,” Howard said. Tally Ho isn’t the first product from Carolina Moon Distillery named in honor of a local community. Ole Tom Whiskey was developed and named in honor of Edgefield as a way to thank the community for their support. “It’s a tribute to Edgefield because the National Wild Turkey Federation is located here so turkeys are kind of a big part of our community,” said Long. “Ole Tom has a beautiful picture of a strutting wild American turkey on [the bottle].” It cannot be bought in stores and can only be purchased directly from Carolina Moon Distillery’s tasting room, in the heart of downtown Edgefield at 116 Courthouse Square. Location, specifically Edgefield, was important to founders Long and Cal Bowie from the start. The lifelong friends have deep roots in the community. They grew up in the area, attended school at Clemson and

returned home to open the distillery along with Bowie’s cousin, Bill Hatch. Long said that roots and heritage are at the heart of everything Carolina Moon Distillery does. “Edgefield is home,” said Long. He said the community has responded very well to the distillery. “From the start, [Edgefield] has been very open.” Long said that he and Bowie both have somewhat agricultural backgrounds. “This area is very agricultural so we grew up with a lot of farmers,” Long said. “We had good access to that.” They use locally-sourced produce in their spirits, such as corn and peaches. “You realize that nothing goes to waste,” Long said about farm life, “and that’s something we incorporate into our process.” They give leftover mash to a local pig farmer who in turn uses it as feed for livestock. The first farmer the trio hit up for supplies was Long’s father, a hobby farmer who grows corn. They soon outgrew what he could supply and found an additional supplier in another local farmer whom Long and Bowie have known most of their lives. “It’s right here in Edgefield,” Long said of the second farm, “it’s actually about five miles from us.”

The company has grown rapidly. The team met their two-year business plan goals in a short six months. Initially open only three days a week, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, Long said that they’ve recently been open Mondays through Saturdays and he expects the extended hours to be permanent. The growth means that they are adding additional types of spirits. “Rum should be out in May,” Long said, though he stressed that the date isn’t firm. “Vodka will probably be out in summer, maybe fall.” Long attributes part of this rapid growth to the growing trend of drinking liquor and consuming products that are locally sourced. “We’re really seeing that people are pushing to have their vegetables and fruits and even livestock, [locally sourced],” said Long. “They’d rather buy it where they know where it comes from and I think it’s spilling over into the spirits business.” Howard agrees that local products are important to his customers. “If there’s something available that is locally sourced I think it does mean more. I get a lot of people that come in and ask, ‘Do you have that moonshine that’s made in Edgefield?’ People love to support local businesses.” He added, “There’s a huge resurgence of bourbon. Bourbon got really popular in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s. People started trending away from cocktails in the ‘80s and ‘90s and it’s really coming back.” He attributes this return to drinking liquors to the growing quality of American bourbon and the trend in entertainment that features bourbons and whiskeys. The successful growth of the company means they have begun planning for the future. Plans include possibly opening a bigger still and expanding to Georgia. The licensing to cross state lines is complex and the trio is currently working through the necessary paperwork. Once established in Georgia, they plan to create a line of liquor in honor of the city of Augusta, though what type of liquor they make and how they celebrate the Garden City have yet to be determined.

Georgia company helps military transition to civilian jobs PRNewswire – A Georgia group dedicated to helping military personnel transition to civilian life recently received a boost from a global company. Hire Heroes USA, based in Alpharetta, Ga., entered a corporate partnership with Pivotal Payments, a leading provider of technology-driven global payment processing solutions. Hire Heroes is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping veterans

transform their military service into civilian success by creating job opportunities through personalized employment training and corporate engagement. Pivotal Payments will actively support Hire Heroes through direct donations and as an employment partner. The funds provided by Pivotal Payments will expand Hire Heroes USA’s reach, allowing more veterans and their spouses to seek

civilian employment through hands-on, personalized services. The majority of Hire Heroes’ work is completed virtually through online and telephone career coaching, comprised of a three-phase process of assessment, training and mentorship. The process helps clients understand their transferable skills, learn effective job search techniques and create professionally-revised business resumes.

The personalized career coaching approach used by Hire Heroes is nationally recognized as a best-in-class model, and has resulted in an average of 42 veterans hired each week, and 1,940 confirmed veterans hired in 2014. Founded in 2005, Hire Heroes USA is a national nonprofit organization headquartered in Alpharetta, Ga. For more information visit

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Sports and Leisure Glenn Campbell

Kid Stuff

Teen drivers are now taking a spin around the track As most college age teenagers in America ponder their decisions about spring break, NASCAR’s young guns are trying to figure out how to adjust their race cars to go fast. Gone are the days of choosing Coppertone or Hawaiian Tropic. Instead, these young men are looking at things such as Track Bar Height or Front Spring combinations. There is no “time to turn” message ringing in their ears. They mostly hear their spotter telling them if it is clear to move lanes while driving at over 180 miles an hour. This year’s crop of NASCAR young guns is the youngest class of drivers to date. Their ages range from 17 years of age to 21, but the remarkable fact is that these youngsters are winning races and championships before their 21st birthdays. Leading the pack are three drivers whose average age is 17.6 years old. Erik Jones, John Hunter Nemechek, and Chase Elliott are the three youngsters that have the garage area buzzing each weekend. Erik Jones came to prominence when he was 17 years old, competing on the Camping World Truck Series for Kyle Busch Racing. He scored his first National Series win only five races into his career in 2014.

This season, he is splitting time as a full time Truck Series competitor and a fill-in for Kyle Busch on the Joe Gibbs Racing XFINITY team while Busch recovers from injuries, with top-five finishes in each series. “It’s nice to finally get the finishes I thought we deserved,” Jones said. “We struggled with getting caught up in people’s messes early on.” Nemechek is the youngest of the trio at 17 years old and the son of NASCAR veteran Joe Nemechek. The elder carries the nickname of Front Row Joe in reference to his ability to qualify consistently on the front row during his NASCAR prime. The younger Nemechek seems to be a chip off the old block and is earning quite a name for himself on the series. He credits his father’s experience and guidance for his early rise to success. “It means everything to me,” the younger Nemechek said. “Without him, I wouldn’t be here right now. He’s put his time and effort, and pretty much his life, into making my career jump-start. I can’t thank him enough for it.” John Hunter is not old enough to meet NASCAR’s requirements to run on tracks longer than 1.25 miles but will be on June 11 when he turns 18. In the mean time, he is honing his skills on the Camping World Truck Series and ARCA Series. Joe Nemechek is proud of his son and other young drivers that are sons of retired NASCAR veterans. He credits their early success to being exposed to their father’s careers. “I think the biggest thing that helps them is just listening to all of us dads talk about what our cars are doing and this and that, and they learn all that,” said Front Row Joe.

The last and certainly most successful young driver is Chase Elliott. Chase is the son of NASCAR Cup Series Champion Bill Elliott from just up the road in Dawsonville, Ga. Chase became the first rookie at the age of 18 to claim a NASCAR National title when he captured the XFINITY Championship last season. He also became the first Next Generation Youth Initiative driver to win a National title to go along with his father’s Cup Series Title in 1988. “It’s a miracle,” said a proud father after Chase won the XFINITY title. “He’s a great kid and I just hope he keeps his head screwed on straight.” The elder Elliott went on to say that the key to his son’s success is due to his ability to know what he feels and needs in a race car while he is behind the wheel. “He knows what he wants in a race car,” continued the 1988 champion. “If he can keep going in that direction, he’ll be as good as they come.” Despite his father’s confidence, Chase still feels the pressure to perform

and it was evident while he prepared for his first Cup Series race at Martinsville at the end of March. “Heck, anyone would be lying if they said that they weren’t nervous about making their first Cup start,” said the young Dawsonville Driver. “I don’t know what to expect but if we can stay on the lead lap that would be a great day to shoot for.” Despite their age, these three drivers and several others that we just don’t have time to mention, are truly mature in terms of driving experience way beyond their years. With many of NASCAR’s veterans starting to look at retirement such as Jeff Gordon, NASCAR is positioned well for the future with these young men. Their maturity and presence in front of a camera or the boardroom will keep NASCAR as a first tier National Sport for years to come. Glenn Campbell is a syndicated columnist and radio and TV show host. For more information, visit

Giants’ top prospects join GreenJackets The Augusta GreenJackets, in conjunction with the 2014 World Series Champion San Francisco Giants, have announced their 2015 roster. Many faces familiar to the CSRA made the flight back east, with a former UGA Outfielder and 10 previous GreenJackets headed back to Augusta. “We are excited to welcome a talented crew of future San Francisco Giants to Augusta,” said GreenJackets General Manager Tom Denlinger. “We invite the CSRA to come out and kick off the exciting 2015 season!” Former University of Georgia outfielder Hunter Cole will be making the trip up Interstate 20 to join the GreenJackets. Last season, Hunter split time with the SalemKeiser Volcanoes (Short Season A, Northwest League) and the Arizona Fall League Giants. In 101 total plate appearances, Hunter hit .257 with four home runs and six doubles.

50 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

The Giants’ 2014 2nd and 6th draft picks are headed to the Garden City, as catcher Aramis Garcia (2nd) and first baseman Skyler Ewing (6th) have been assigned to the GreenJackets. Along with Cole, both Garcia and Ewing split their time with Salem-Kaiser and the Arizona Fall League Giants last season. Garcia finished 2014 hitting .225 with 15 RBI in 102 plate appearances. Ewing ended with the year with a .282 batting average, with 9 home runs and 39 RBI in 220 plate appearances. The GreenJackets will also welcome 10 familiar faces back to Lake Olmstead Stadium. Andrew Cain, Will Callaway, Connor Kaden, Raymundo Montero, Randy Ortiz, Cristian Paulino, Travious Relaford, Jose Reyes, and Jeremy Sy will be making a return trip to Augusta. For a complete roster, visit

In addition to talent on the field, this season has a lot of fun in store for the fans. The 2015 schedule features the most robust promotions schedule in the history of the GreenJackets. A full promotional schedule can be found at www.greenjacketsbaseball. com/promotions, but highlights of the 2015 fan giveaways include: • May 2 - Pink in the Park with a T-shirt giveaway (first 1,500 fans) – GRHealth • May 22 - Auggie Gnome Giveaway (1,000) – Verizon Wireless • June 20 – Cowbell Giveaway (1,000) SUDIA • July 10 – World Series Piggie Bank Giveaway (1,000) - SRP Federal Credit Union • July 24 – Road to the Show Tumbler (1,000) – SRP Federal Credit Union • August 7 – Madison Bumgarner Bobblehead (1,000) – Petsch Respiratory Services “Our front office staff has been working

diligently this offseason to create one of the most jam packed and FUN promotional lineups for our fans,” Denlinger said. “We look forward to seeing you at Lake Olmstead Stadium this summer and ‘Catching the Buzz’ with us.” Two former Major League players will also be visiting the GreenJackets this season. Former Atlanta Braves pitcher John Rocker will make an appearance at the stadium on May 16. Denny McLain, the last pitcher to post more than 30 wins in a season, will be on hand on Aug. 6. He won 31 with the Detroit Tigers in 1968. The GreenJackets open their 27th consecutive season of professional baseball in Augusta tonight against the Rome Braves (Atlanta Braves). For more information, including pricing and benefits on all plans, visit

Screening Room Samantha Taylor

Inconvenient Tube

Netflix offers a lot of viewing, but doesn’t have everything If you read my last column, you’re aware of my newfound love for Netflix. It’s wonderfully convenient and there are tons of choices. But does it have everything I want? Sounds like a challenge. Let’s see if Netflix has the first three things I pick. The Wire (2002 – 2008) TV - MA People are often shocked at how far behind the times I am when it comes to television and film entertainment. The Wire was receiving accolades from almost every major industry organization a decade ago. Do you know when I watched my first episode? Last week. The Wire is addictive. Set in Baltimore, it follows the

workings of a drug dealing organization and the police force trying to take it down. It’s gritty and raw, with foul language and complicated stories. If you’re looking for a show to binge watch, The Wire is it. It should be noted, however, that I didn’t actually watch The Wire on Netflix. I borrowed season one from a friend after she insisted I review it. I checked into it, and while the series is available through Netflix, it’s DVD only. Lucky for me, I already had them, so I didn’t have to upgrade my membership. Starship Troopers (1997) R I may have said this before, but Starship Troopers is perhaps my all-time favorite movie. I can watch it two or three times in a row without getting bored. And I did exactly that when I pulled it up immediately on the Netflix search. It was with great excitement that I sat back to watch the story I know all too well. Set in the future, high school graduates are recruited to gain citizenship and join the federation by serving in the military. But there is a war going on and the recruits soon find themselves in an intergalactic battle against giant bugs. Now I realize sci-fi may not be your cup of tea, but if you were ever going to give it a try, this is the movie you should watch. Mediocre special effects, over acting, and giant bugs traveling through

space? Who wouldn’t love that! 3rd Rock from the Sun (1996 – 2001) TV – 14 I remember watching this show with my family when it originally came on television and was reacquainted with it again last year when a friend started watching it. 3rd Rock from the Sun follows the lives of four aliens as they adjust to life on Earth. The jokes are smart and funny and it’s easy to watch while you pay bills or fold laundry. Needless to say, I was thrilled when it came right up in the Netflix search and I watched a few episodes while I cooked dinner. Before you sit down to watch 3rd Rock from the Sun with your family, you should know that sex drives nearly every plotline of the series. If your family isn’t okay with that this show isn’t for you. Instead of laughing, you’ll be sitting through quite a few uncomfortable silences. Since I’d had success with my Netflix searches, I had my son choose a few things. His success was fleeting. His first choice was Kicking and Screaming, the 2005 comedy starring Will Ferrell and Robert Duvall. Unfortunately for the boy, Netflix had no matches for this title. He was disappointed, and so was I, but I told him not to worry about it

and pick something else. His next choice was the Lego Movie. I’m not sure why he picked this, considering he owns it, but it’s what he wanted to search for and we did. It was available, but through DVD only. There were, however, a few of the Lego shows available for immediate viewing, but he wasn’t interested in any of that. I decided that I should make the next choice, considering I had been so successful earlier, and I picked the animated series Animaniacs, which ran from 1993-1998. Again, DVD only. The final title typed into the Netflix search engine was School House Rock. The only match that came up was School House Rock Earth, made in 2008. It was not what we were looking for. Although there have been a few inconveniences, my Netflix experience has been pretty positive in this last month. It’s no wonder it’s been popular for so long. I guess I have a lot of catching up to do. Samantha Taylor “Sam the Movie Chick” is on a mission to find the best movies and TV shows for you to stream from Netflix. She loves good flicks, good food and good friends. Her eclectic tastes are sure to give readers a wide range of viewing choices.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Humor Nora Blithe

Pack Rats

When it comes to moving, the real work starts at home “Have you seen my socks,” my husband Brian asked me. It was his first day returning to work after taking time off to accommodate our recent move from an apartment to a house. I stared at him blankly, trying to force my brain to think, something it stopped doing approximately two hours into the move. I’m convinced that cardboard kills brain cells. “Socks,” he said again emphatically. “I have to get dressed for work.” “Socks,” I muttered. Socks? Where had I seen socks?

Healthy Eating Melissa Brown

Know Your Labels What your food is eating should matter to you

Since there are no specific laws that define proper standards and animal welfare, we are left to wonder what we are eating. If it is sold on a shelf it must be safe right? Wrong. Without proper standards the only person looking out for you…is You! Here are a few points to consider before chowing down. “Naturally Raised” To be considered naturally raised the USDA requires three things: that the animal is given no growth hormones, no antibiotics and no food that contains animal byproducts. However, missing from the requirements is any emphasis on animal welfare. Was the animal confined on a factory farm, stuck in a gestation crate or were any environmental or conservation issues ad-

52 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

“They were in a box,” I said dully. We stared into our dining room. Boxes packed it so tightly from floor to ceiling that not even a nimble cat could enter the room. Brian sighed. “They’re probably in the far back corner.” I wept silently at the thought of opening even one more box. “What am I going to do,? he asked. “I have to go to work.” “Do you have to wear socks?” I asked. “Yes, I have to wear socks! I work on my feet all day. I don’t want to get blisters!” Wearily, I found a box cutter. He grunted and shifted a box of books. I wriggled through the opening he’d made in the wall of boxes. Carefully, I shoved my way through the stack. I ignored boxes that didn’t have “socks” written on the side. When I made my way to the far corner, I located a box labeled “Brian’s socks.” “Found it,” I shouted triumphantly. I sliced open the tape, grabbed a pair of Brian’s socks and tossed them to him. “Thanks,” he shouted. His voice was somewhat muffled by the wall of cardboard between us.

“In the bathroom,” I answered. We lifted four stacks of plastic bins and pressed through until we found the iron. “Have you seen my work shoes?” “They’re in a box labeled ‘Shoes, mostly Brian’s,’” I told him. “It’s in the hallway.” We stared into the hallway. The box with the shoes was under the bins we’d just removed from the bathroom. With a sob, I began putting the bins back into the bathroom. When he was dressed, Brian kissed me goodbye. “Don’t leave,” I begged. “Don’t leave me here with all these boxes!” “I’ve got to go to work,” he told me. “Ha,” I retorted. “You mean you’ve got to escape.” “Call it what you will,” he said. He dashed for his car. I rolled my eyes. Brian might have been off to his job, but he knew he was leaving me with the unpacking: the real work! “Do you know where the ironing board is?” he asked. “In the office,” I replied. We shoved boxes until we reached it. “Do you know where the iron is?”

dressed on the farm. “Raised Without Added Hormone,” “No Hormones Administered,” “Hormone Free,” or “No Synthetic Hormones” These terms indicate that no synthetic hormones were given to the animals in question. Federal law prohibits the use of hormones on hogs, poultry or bison. Be aware that the use of any hormone-free label on pork and poultry products is intended to mislead consumers into thinking that the product is different and worthy of a higher price. USDA requires that use of these labels on pork or poultry include the disclaimer: “Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in poultry/pork.” In the case of beef and dairy cattle, federal regulations allow the use of hormones. Recombinant bovine growth hormone (also known as rBGH or rBST) is a synthetic growth hormone injected into dairy cattle to increase milk production. Several hormones are used for growth promotion in beef cattle. “Raised Without Antibiotics” or “No Antibiotics Administered” This means that no antibiotics were used over the course of the animal’s life. Some large-scale producers feed animals antibiotics at low doses to promote growth and prevent disease, which may be linked to the

spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria in the environment. Other producers use antibiotics only to treat sick animals. Regardless, if an animal receives antibiotics for any reason, its meat, milk or eggs cannot be labeled “organic” or “raised without antibiotics.” The no-antibiotics labels do not tell you anything about what the animals were fed, or if they had access to pasture, and USDA has not developed any standards for this label. Take time to know what you are eat-

Nora Blithe is an Augusta native, an entrepreneur and a syndicated humor columnist. She lives in Greenville, S.C., with her husband, Brian, and their pets. Read her syndicated humor column Life Face First in Verge, or find her online at

ing. That means caring about where your food comes from, reading labels and shopping smart. Your health depends on it. The value of spending your hard-earned dollar on good food is priceless. Eat well now, and cut down on health bills later! Melissa Brown is Marketing Team Leader for Whole Foods Market in Augusta. She has more than five years of marketing experience in Augusta and the surrounding areas. If you can’t find her in the store you will find her out and about spreading the word about Whole Foods.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Home Care Kathy Crist

Get Physical

Elderly need exercise to stay fit, healthier into later years Zumba class? You bet. Tennis? Most definitely. Golf? Absolutely. Getting older and reaching retirement doesn’t mean you retire your body. Staying active in the golden years looks like anything from a brisk walk in the neighborhood to a mountain hike and everything in between. Now that winter is over, sunnier days are ahead and older adults can participate in a plethora of outdoor activities. For each decade past age 30, inactive people can lose an average of 3 to 5 percent of their muscle mass, translating to loss of strength and mobility.

Real Estate Greg Deal

Why Wait to Relax? Some places are worth the trade off of a longer commute

You’ve probably seen the bumper stickers that say, “I’d rather be fishing!” So, why aren’t you? Society has tried to tell you that you must wait until retirement before you can live out your dreams. That’s simply not true. Super-commuters are people who choose to trade a long commute to work for a lifestyle that is more in tune with their desires. These commuters might travel to an urban area for their jobs, but they live in places that give them the lifestyle they desire. In a lot of urban areas, people spend up to an hour or

54 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

Regular exercise for the elderly is worth its weight in healthful benefits including: • Less pain • More flexible joints • Increased blood circulation • Improved heart health • Strengthened bone density • Weight maintenance or loss • Better sleep • Increased mental sharpness Even everyday activities like gardening and household chores keep senior adults moving and engaged in life. Plus, routine physical activity is mood-boosting and can make a person happier and more relaxed to be around. Seniors who experience issues with a heart condition, breathing, joint inflammation, blood pressure or dizziness should receive medical approval before increasing physical activity. A balanced fitness approach for older adults includes the following: Endurance – Cardio or endurance activities such as brisk walking, jogging, biking, swimming or dancing build physical resiliency. If needed, break exercise into 10-minute intervals. Strength – Resistance bands and wall pushups are ways to build muscles.

more in their cars – stuck in traffic — just to travel from one side of the city to the other to get from home to work and vice-versa. Why not trade in that hectic commute for a nice, leisurely drive to Savannah Lakes Village after work each day? When you strip away the nightmarish traffic and some of the uninspired living arrangements of everyday urban lifestyle, your life can become more peaceful and complete. A nice commute is worth the benefits of life on The Freshwater Coast here in Savannah Lakes. The good news is those with careers don’t have to sacrifice much to achieve their ideal lifestyle. They don’t have to worry about technological connectivity, as the Village offers fiber-optic broadband — for work or for play — to every doorstep. That’s up to 1 gigabyte (yes, that’s 1,000 megabytes) per second of speed that many can use to work from home if they choose. There are no issues Skyping with colleagues or conducting a web conference with clients. Also, more people are finding they can work from home, even though their office is a world away. Today’s technology makes that possible. There is something about living amid nature that is deeply restorative to the soul. You put in a hard day’s work and

Seniors with increased strength experience greater mobility and vitality for activities like mowing the yard or walking the dog. Balance – Tai chi, Pilates and yoga are excellent balance exercises as well as simply balancing on one foot behind a sturdy chair. Flexibility – Stretching one’s muscles helps the entire body stay limber and move more freely. Whether a person is 18 or 88, staying consistent with exercise is a challenge of motivation and discipline. What if an aging loved one brushes off the idea of routine exercise? Here are some ideas to coax older adults on to greater physical health: Explain the healthful benefits. Highlight the exercise advantages of easing joint stiffness and pain and improving energy and outlook. Start small. Seniors who have been inactive or have slowed down over the years need to gradually increase exercise challenges. Be realistic. Instead of aiming for half marathons in six months, just begin with strolls, then vigorous walks. Choose the enjoyable. Suggest a variety of options and let your aging loved ones choose their preferred activities.

look forward to the time you’ve earned for yourself or with your family. Before DVD players, computers and video games, families spent much of their time outdoors. There is a movement today among those who have grown up around technology – particularly among members of Generation X – to strike a balance between work and home. Maybe you know someone who is planning to build that dream home near the lake when he or she retires. Give those folks a gift and tell them they don’t have to wait. A newly con-

Regular exercise for the elderly is worth its weight in health benefits Garner the support of others. Enlisting an exercise buddy helps with exercise consistency and lifts the spirits with conversation and friendship. For seniors who receive a doctor-approved exercise program, Right at Home caregivers can offer safety supervision. Right at Home also provides transportation to physical therapy, the gym or walking track. With nature greening up for an active summer ahead, now is the time for older adults to refresh a regular physical exercise routine. Zumba, golf or tennis, anyone? Kathy Crist co-owns Right at Home of the CSRA. As a leading provider of inhome care and assistance, Right at Home supports family caregivers and is dedicated to improving the life of the elderly and disabled. Call 803-278-0250 or visit

structed home in the Village starts at $160,000. We are holding an Open Team Bass Tournament April 18 with the largest one-day payout at Lake Thurmond. This is a chance for all to come and experience the wonderful natural resources in the Savannah Lakes region. Greg Deal is Communications Manager at Savannah Lakes Village. He has published a magazine about Savannah Lakes Village, is a published author, and has worked in both marketing and journalism for nearly 20 years.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


56 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015


Sports Camps

• Boys Basketball Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-8th graders. June 1-5 from 9 a.m. – noon. $150. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Camp Flip Flop hosted by Gymnastics Gold, Ages 4-13. Gymnastics, games, crafts, outdoor activities and more. Contact 706-650-2111 or visit • Cheerleading Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-8th graders. July 15-19 from noon3 p.m. $150. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Football Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st8th graders. July 8-12 from noon-3p.m. $150.Contact 706-731-5260 or visit wsa. net/summer. • Girls Basketball Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-8th graders. June 8-12 from 9 a.m. – noon. $150. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Kick ‘N Karate Camp hosted by Premier Martial Arts, Weekly martial arts camps, June 8 - August 14. Register

by calling (803) 640-8443. • Rowing Camp hosted by Augusta Rowing Club, Ages 12-18. June 13-17 and July 11-15, 8 a.m. – noon. $100 per week, includes lunch and t-shirt. • Soccer Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-5th graders. May 26-29 from 9 a.m. – noon. $135. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Summer Horse Camp hosted by Tranquility Stables of Appling, GA, Ages 6 and up. Weekly sessions June 1st-July 27th. Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m. Awards show every Friday. $255 per session. Call 813-714-2456 to reserve your spot. • Summer Tennis and Swim Camp hosted by Newman Tennis Center, Ages 7-17. Weekly sessions from June 1-July 3 and July 13-August 7. $200 per week. For additional information call 706-821-1600. • Tennis Camp hosted by the Petersburg Racquet Club, Ages 4 -18. Weekly sessions are held in June and July. Pee Wees (ages 4-5) are Monday,

Wednesday, and Friday from 8:15 – 9 a.m. Half-day camps for those 6-18 are from 9 a.m. – noon. Pee Wees: $36 per week or $15 a day for non-members; $28 a week or $12 a day for members. Half-day camps: $140 a week or $32 per day for non-members; $110 per week or $26 a day for members. Participants are divided into groups by age and ability, where they participate in tennis

instruction and swimming. Contact 706-860-9288 or • Volleyball Camp hosted by Augusta Preparatory Day School, Rising 6th-8th graders, 9 a.m.-noon. Rising 9th-12th graders, 1-4 p.m. June 6-9 and June 18-21. $130 per week. Girls learn the fundamental skills of volleyball in a competitive and fun environment.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Educational Camps

• American Girl Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising K-3rd graders, July 13-17 from 9 a.m. – noon. $150. Campers will focus on a different American Girl doll each day, learning their history through crafts, games and more. Campers can bring their own dolls. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Book Club hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-2nd graders, June 8-12, 9 a.m. – noon. $135. Participants will take books home and participate in crafts. Contact 706-7315260 or • Camp Invention, Rising 1st-6th graders. June 15-19 from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. at either Augusta Christian Schools or the Ruth Patrick Science Education Center. $220. Created by the National Inventors Hall of Fame, Camp Invention is the only nationally recognized summer program focused on creativity, innovation, real-world problem solving and the spirit of invention. Contact 800968-4332 or • Careers in Business hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 10th-12th graders. June 8-12 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. $150. Each day of the camp will be dedicated to a specific business career. Business dress is required. Contact

58 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

706-731-5260 or visit • Dig History Day Camp hosted by Hickory Hill in Thomson, Ages 11-17. June 8-12 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. $60 (does not include lunch). Campers will explore ancient hunting methods, learn what our garbage says about us, and work alongside professional archaeologists to learn about forensic methods to solve crimes. Contact 706-595-7777 or • Driver’s Education hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Those who have a valid driver’s permit. Classroom instruction, May 26-30 from 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Driving hours: Six hours scheduled between June 1- August 8. $450. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Eat Your Homework: Math & Science Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-5th graders. July 6-10 from 1:30-3:30pm. $125. Campers will discover what makes bread rise, what happens when you whip egg whites, why fractions are important in cooking, and more. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Eating A-Z hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising Pre-K-Kindergarteners. July 6-10, 9-11 a.m. $125. Campers will practice their alphabet while making snacks for different let-

ters. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit wsa. net/summer. • Eco-Adventures Day Camp hosted by Hickory Hill in Thomson, Ages 10-15. June 22-26, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. $60 (does not include lunch). Campers will learn how Native Americans lived off the land, how early Georgia settlers farmed, and how we can help sustain our environment for the future. This experiential camp allows kids to plant a medicinal and culinary herb garden, harvest fruit, vegetables, and eggs, and make snacks and crafts from the fruits of their labors. Contact 706-595-7777 or • Everyday Poetry: Reading and Writing in the World hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 9th-12th graders. June 15-19, 9 a.m. – noon. $120. Participants discuss poetry, as well as venture off-campus for writing inspiration. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Foreign Language Prep hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 8th-9th graders. July 13-17 from 10 a.m. – noon. $150. A camp that provides a grammatical foundation for students who take Latin, French, or Spanish. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Grandmother’s Kitchen hosted by

Westminster Schools of Augusta, Pre-K and Kindergarteners, June 15-19 from 9-11 a.m. Rising 1st-5th graders, June 15-19 from 1:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. $125. Campers will make old-fashioned recipes. Contact 706-731-5260 or wsa. net/summer. • Great Book Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 11th-12th graders. July 20-31 from 9-10 a.m. $150. An in-depth study of “The Odyssey”. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Growing Green hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, June 8-12. 9:30-11:30 a.m. for rising 3rd-5th graders and 1-3 p.m. for rising 6th-8th graders. Campers will learn about soil, composting, hydroponics and more through projects and keepa gardener’s journal. $175. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Hands and Feet hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 3rd-6th graders. June 22-26 from 9 a.m. – noon $150. Campers will serve others through hands-on projects. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Kids University Summer Camps hosted by Georgia Regents University, Rising Kindergarteners through rising 9th graders. Science and Social Studies topics. June 1-26 and July 6-17.

Half Day $100, Full Day $170, Extended Day $185. Registration begins Tuesday, April 1. • Kroc Teen Art hosted by the Kroc Center, Ages 13-15. June 15-19 and July 13-17 from 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Camp includes art instruction, lunch and swimming. For more information, call 706-364-KROC or visit • Lego Creativity Camps hosted by Bricks 4 Kidz, Ages 6-12. One-week sessions beginning May 23rd and continuing throughout summer. 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. $160 per week, including lunch, snack, t-shirt, and custom designed mini-figure. • Master Chef hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, June 22-26 from 9-11 a.m. for rising 6th-8th graders. June 22-26 from 1:30-3:30 p.m. for rising 9th-12th graders. $125. Students will make recipes written by famous chefs. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit summer. • Molly Manners: Kool to be Kind hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-5th graders. June 1-5 from 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. $145. Campers will learn about introductions, dining etiquette, conversation skills, and more. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit

summer. • Molly Manners: Nice is Right hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising Pre-K – 1st graders. July 13-17 from 12:30-3:30 p.m. $145. Campers will learn about introductions, setting a table and being a happy helper. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit summer. • Public Speaking hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 8th-10th graders. June 15-19 from 12:303:30 p.m. $150. Campers will participate in exercises that will help them communicate effectively with others. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit summer. • Robotics Adventure Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 5th-8th graders. July 6-10 from 9 a.m. – noon. An NXT-based adventure in which campers apply math, science and technology skills to complete missions. $175. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Very Vera Cooking Camp at The Cottage on Wheeler Road, Pre-Beginners (ages 6-7): June 8-12; Beginners (ages 8-14; never attended camp before): June 15-19 and July 13-17; Advanced Beginners (ages 11-14): July 6-10; Intermediate: June 22-26; Advanced (for students who have attended two

previous years of camp), July 20-24. Pre-Beginners meet from 9 a.m.-noon; all other camps meet from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. $225 per child; $250 for advanced campers and $200 for Pre-Beginners. Budding chefs will develop cooking skills, improve their table etiquette, learn about nutrition, participate in crafts and enjoy the delicious goodies. Contact 706-294-3492 or visit veryvera. com • Wilderness Medicine hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 4th-8th graders, July 20-22 from 9 a.m. – noon. $175. A three-day survival camp. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit

Art Camps

• 2015 Collage Creative Arts Camp (Symphony Camp) hosted by the Friends of the Augusta Symphony, Rising K – 5th graders. May 26-29 from 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Woodlawn United Methodist Church; June 1-5 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at Woodlawn; June 8-12 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at Vineyard Church of Augusta. $125 per week. This camp includes hands-on activities with strings, percussion, woodwinds, brass, art, movement, drama, chorus, puppetry, weaving, storytelling and creative writing.

Contact 706-738-7527 or • Adventures in Art hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising Pre-K-4th graders: June 1-5 from 12:30-2:30 p.m. Rising 5th-8th graders: June 8-12 from 12:30-2:30 p.m. $150. Campers will explore multiple mediums. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit wsa. net/summer. • Augusta Players Summer Theatre Camp, Ages 6-teen. June 15-26 and July 13-24. $275-$325 Contact 706-8264707 or • British Invasion Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 6th-12th graders. June 22-26 from 9 a.m. – noon. $150. Campers should bring their instruments to this camp, which will focus on the history of pop music and the great songs produced by that era. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Beginning to Moderate Tap Dance hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 6th graders-adult, June 22-26 from 12:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. $170. Co-ed dancers will learn the basic skills, including the fundamentals of movement, stretching, and rhythm. A recital will be held on the last day of camp. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit summer.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


• Choir Camp hosted by the Georgia Regents University Fine Arts Center, Rising middle- and high-school singers. June 15-19, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Thursday and 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday. Participants will receive instruction in class voice and musical theater, and will be offered electives in guitar, piano and Georgia AllState audition preparation. $180 ($200 is registering after May 30). Contact 706-731-7971 or • Dance Camp hosted by Augusta West Dance Studio, All ages and abilities. A variety of themed weeks will be held through June and July. For more information, call 706-860-0998 or visit • Dance Camp and Intensive hosted by Columbia County Ballet, Ages 3-7, throughout June and July. Contact 706860-1852 or visit columbiacountyballet. com • DIY Home Décor Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 11th graders – adults. June 22-26 from 10 a.m. – noon. Participants will learn how to make wreaths, bows, and more. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Hot on the Trail of Art Camp hosted by the Kroc Center, 5-12 year-olds. June 15-19, June 22-26, July 6-10, July 13-17. Half day, 9 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., and full-day, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Campers will follow the clues from A to Z and discover the hidden mysteries of art. Half day camp: $150. Full-day camp: $175. Contact 706-364-KROC or • Introduction to Piano hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 1st-4thgraders. June 15-19 from 1-2 p.m. $100. Participants will learn basic keyboard skills using Musikgarten’s aural method. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit • Jessye Norman School of the Arts Summer Camp, Rising 5th-12th graders, June 8-26 and July 13-31. Campers will produce and perform a musical, as

60 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

well as participate in fun, daily activities. Contact 706-877-0411. Applications provided on the school’s website, • Mad about Manga hosted by The Kroc Center, Ages 9-14. July 20-24 Full-day camp, 9 a.m.-3 p.m., and halfday camp, 9 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. available. Full-day: $175. Half-day: $150. Campers of all skill levels will learn Manga techniques. Contact 706-364-KROC or visit • Musikgarten: Music Makers at the Seashore hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising Pre-K-2nd graders. June 15-19 from 9:30 a.m. – noon. $150. Campers will participate in songs, dances, stories and more. • My First Piano Adventure Mini Music Camp hosted by Georgia Regents University Fine Arts Center, Rising 1st-2nd graders. 9-10:30 a.m., Date to be announced. $119. Contact 706-7317971 or • Nutcracker Dance Camps hosted by the Augusta Ballet School, Session 1: June 6-10, ages 3-5. 2:30-4:30 p.m. $100. Session II: June 13-17, ages 3-5. 2:30-4:30 p.m. $100. Session III: June 20-24, ages 6-8. 2:30-5 p.m. $110. Students will learn a different section of Nutcracker choreography each day. Sessions end with a performance for friends and families. • Orchestra Camp hosted by GRU’s Performing Arts Theatre, Intermediate and advanced strings players. June 8-12, Monday-Thursday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Friday: 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. $180; $200 after May 30. Activities will include two orchestras, chamber music ensembles, cello ensemble, Celtic music group, music theory class and electives. Contact 706-731-7971 or • Paul Owen’s Drama Camp hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 3rd-7th graders, June 22-26, 9 a.m. - noon. $170. Includes the basics of acting taught through theater

games, group activities, improve and more. Camp ends with a performance. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit summer. • Sewing Basics hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 6th-8th graders. June 15-19 from 9 a.m. – noon. $175. Campers will learn the basics while making pajama pants and a pillow. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit wsa. net/summer. • Summer Ceramics and Sculpture hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 6th-12th graders June 1-12 from 9 a.m. – noon. $350. Campers will learn advanced techniques in 3D art, making complete works of clay art and learning about the history of sculpture. The two-week camp will include field trips to visit local artists. Contact 706-731-5260 or visit Writing Warriors hosted by Westminster Schools of Augusta, Rising 6th-8th graders, July 27-31, 1-3 p.m. $150. Participants will organize ideas while supporting a thesis. Contact 706-7315260 or

Traditional Camps

• AJCC Summer Day Camp hosted by the Augusta Jewish Community Cen-

ter, 3-13 year-olds. Full-day sessions held throughout the summer months. Early drop off and lay stay available for an additional fee. All campers, including specialty campers, will participate in swimming, arts and crafts and a variety of other activities during the camp week. For more information contact 706-228-3636 or • AJCC Summer Mini Camp hosted by the Augusta Jewish Community Center, 3-4 year-olds. Half-day sessions are held throughout the summer months. All mini campers will participate in swimming, arts and crafts and many other activities during the camp week. For more information contact 706-2283636 or Augusta Recreation and Parks Summer Day Camps, Ages 4-12. Sessions are available between June 1 and July 31 from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. No camp between June 20-July 3. Locations include: Bernie Ward Community Center, Blythe Recreation Center, Diamond Lake Community Center, McBean Community Center, and Warren Road Community Center. Games, sports, arts & crafts, field trips, swimming and more. Registration begins April 1. For more information visit online.activenetwork.

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


Campers ‘camp out’ at Putt Putt for a break By Neil Gordon, Publisher The camps at the Family Y and on post at Fort Gordon are known as some of the best experiences for campers all summer, from swimming to horseback riding to sports and arts and crafts. So where do camp counselors from there go to give their kids a break during the summer? Putt Putt! “They usually plan a day or two each summer with us,” said Putt Putt owner Mark Ross. “We’re different.” Smaller campers from area daycares and camps get a chance to play Putt Putt golf and indoor games for prizes. Older campers over 10 can enjoy laser tag. No matter what the age, all campers love to cool off with bumper boats. “It’s a chance to get wet after a good, hot day,” Ross said. Camp sessions last for two hours and include a chance for everyone to enjoy 10 game tokens, Putt-Putt, a half hour in the bouncy balls, pizza and a drink. Rates range from $6-10 per camper, depending on whether campers want extra activities like laser tag or bumper boats. Usually the summer camp fun occurs during the day – but not always. “Cornerstone Academy on Martinez

62 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

Boulevard likes to do family night out at Putt Putt,” Ross said. He thinks it is a great way to bring parents, teachers and the children together in a nice outing – kind of an “Open House of Fun.” Putt Putt will also provide a private room so that camp counselors will be able to gather campers together to eat and to plan their activities and departure time.

“We hope that our camp program puts a smile on the faces of area kids and that they tell their parents and bring their entire family back again,”Ross added. Ross said it is a good idea for camps or daycares to call as soon as possible to reserve times this summer as some dates are already filling up. Another reason to make plans as soon as possible is that this June marks Putt Putt’s

61sth anniversary nationally – and about 50 years in Augusta, dating back to the good ol’ days at the corporate store on the Gordon Highway. It will be busy and “all about the fun” at Putt Putt. Putt Putt is located at 3763 Martinez Boulevard (just off Washington Road at Baston Road). Contact them at 706868-0083 or at

April 16-May 20, 2015 Buzz on Biz


64 Buzz on Biz April 16-May 20, 2015

04 13 15 may buzz on biz 64 pages  
04 13 15 may buzz on biz 64 pages