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Popcorn Girl A Fortunate Night USP & UMP Why Do You Need Them?



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

Trade Express Magazine PUBLISHER Joe Lotito CONTROLLER Carita Strawn EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Alison M. Otero BUSINESS AFFAIRS Tommy Anton ADVERTISING EXECUTIVES Patti Boekankamp Lori Howard GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Dante Barber John Iglesia FEATURED WRITERS Lulu Carson Anthony DiMera Victoria Entwhistle Marie Lozono STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER Angela Dayap

FOR ADVERTISING INFORMATION CALL 702-576-0400 Trade Express Magazine

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Trade Express, a division of Trade Consulting LLC is published every six weeks and is distributed throughout the Las Vegas Valley.

No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without expressed written permission from the publisher. Publisher accepts no responsibility for omissions and/or errors. Publisher accepts no responsibility to return unsolicited editorial matter and all rights in portions published thereof remain the sole property of Trade Consulting. Letters to Trade Consulting or its editors become the property of the magazine and are assumed intended for publication and republication in whole or in part, and may be used for this purpose. These letters may be edited for length, errors and clarity. The statements, opinions, and points of view expressed by the writers and advertisers are their own and do not represent the views of the publisher or editor.



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

Inside This Issue

7 Mayor Goodman Mayor Goodman talks about the Downtown Project and her plans for the future of Las Vegas.

11 Spotlight On...

Get to know a business in your area

13 Ask Uncle Tony

USP & UMP Why Do You Need Them? 15 Vegas Vickie Remembers A Fortunate Night

Letter from the Editor

17 Lulu’s Life

Justin Thyme

18 Cookin’ with Aunt Cookie Pasta e Fagioli

Welcome to Trade Express Magazine! We are the Valley’s Premier Publication that brands and markets your business. Five simple reasons why you should advertise with us . . . • Featured Full-page Spotlight Article • Half-page Ad Included • Industry - Category - Area Exclusivity • A Direct Marketing Campaign through Targeted Distribution

• Additional exposure to The Downtown Project By advertising in Trade Express Magazine, you will be able to reach out to new customers by showing them in a unique way why they should do business with you. The “Spotlight On” Article will show your expertise and passion for your business through a professionally written and developed article. Trade Express Magazine is a unique Branding and Marketing tool that will move your business to the next level of success. And did we mention our Social Media Marketing? Trade Express Magazine - Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers. Contact us at 702-576-0400 or visit our website at for more information.


lison M. Otero Editor-in-Chief



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

Mayor Goodman Downtown: Creating a New Reality


n the past, when people talked about construction and expansion in Las Vegas, they referred to properties on the Strip or suburban communities such as Centennial Hills or Summerlin. However, today a renaissance is occurring in one of the oldest and most economically challenged regions of the Valley – Downtown Las Vegas.

Through plans developed during Oscar Goodman’s tenure as Mayor, Downtown has seen major changes to its landscape with certainly more to come. With the Zappos move to the old City Hall building The Downtown Project is in full swing. The mission to continue the revitalization of Downtown is one of the planks of Mayor Carolyn Goodman’s platform. As she explained in an exclusive interview with Trade Express Magazine, “It’s the only reason I ran for office. I think my husband is a visionary and a very steel-willed individual who saw something better in this very blighted downtown area. The first piece of the puzzle was this whole area down here. You cannot have a city that does not have a strong, active, and healthy center – the ‘Core’.” That “core” not only includes businesses and City Government but also museums, cultural arts centers, parks and a sports complex. One of the major pieces of the “core” is the new City Hall building that opened in February, 2012. The $185 million building, which combines architectural form with energy efficiency, is the anchor for a five-block office and retail development planned project. Another major piece of the “core” is Symphony Park, the 61-acre mixed-use urban community containing four districts: Civic, Specialty, Residential and Medical. Three key anchors have already completed construction: The Discovery Children’s Museum, The Smith Center for the Performing Art, and the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. Future plans include the addition of a luxury boutique hotel, a residential community, a casino and several retail stores. The diverse mix of business, medical research and facilities, arts and culture will provide a strong healthy center on which to grow. The City is not the only investor in the success of the Downtown revitalization. Most of the major hotels in the District have started, completed or are about to complete remodels and renovations. The Golden Nugget, El Cortez, and The Plaza have all remodeled in recent years. The Golden Gate and The D (formerly Fitzgerald’s) completed renovations in 2012. The Lady Luck Hotel, which has undergone over $100 million in renovation, is slated to reopen this September as the Downtown Grand. One of the largest private investors has been Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos. Since the announcement of Zappos relocation to the old City Hall building, he has pledged a total of $350 million for The Downtown Project. The monies are allocated thusly: $200 million for real estate purchase and development; $50 million for technology start-ups; $50 million for small businesses; $50 million for arts, education and culture. “He’s been just tremendous because he’s put up $350 million of his own and that makes a difference. Generally what Tony is envisioning is a collaborative effort between the private industry and public sector to develop ‘Pathway to Happiness.’ It is very youth and business-oriented. But it’s more about putting people into positions where they bump into each other, start conversations and come up with ideas to do something.” Tony Hsieh’s investments complement and enhance the City’s vision for the Downtown district. The Container Park, which is slated to open this fall, is a market where entrepreneurs will use converted shipping containers to test retail and restaurant concepts. The Container Park will be a little over a mile from Symphony Park or from the Fremont Street Experience providing easy access to shopping, restaurants and entertainment within reasonable walking distance.


Mayor Goodman - Downtown continued “It’s nice to have a partner. This partnership of our City with Tony Hsieh has just been glorious. I don’t see anything but it getting better in the future. He’s doing things that are a little out of the ordinary but it makes news and that’s what we need.” With the help of a tremendous marketing campaign, The Downtown Project, has brought focus to the revitalization of Las Vegas to the national and international stage. That attention is luring various entrepreneurs from around the globe to submit ideas in hopes of starting their business using monies from Tony Hsieh and the City. “From the City’s point of view, we’ve put up some sizable funds too. There are programs for people coming in with new businesses if they buy in the redevelopment area.” There are two City-sponsored grant programs in place for businesses considering the move to Downtown. The Visual Improvement Program provides up to $50,000 matching grants for exterior improvements like signage, windows and other beautification. Secondly, since many of the buildings in the Downtown District were built more than 30 years ago, The Quick Start Program provides up to $50,000 to offset the costs of renovation and code compliance. It’s a matching program that requires businesses to invest $4 of their own for every $1 of grant dollars.

“I’m a firm believer in investing in the future.” In addition to implementing these grants, the City streamlined the permits and licensing departments and moved them into one building. The process is planned to go online later this year making it even easier for all businesses to get required documentation completed and approved. One major challenge that continues to arise is funding. “Getting people to buy into the plans and not having different groups oppose development is a challenge because you can’t have development without spending money. People will always be there that are scared to change, scared to take a chance and don’t want their tax dollars used for it.” “I’m a firm believer in investing in the future. You have to spend money to make money. To get things to click, you have to sometimes put your own investment out there and then get involved. Especially here. Las Vegas has almost 2 million people (in the Metropolitan area) but it still feels like a small town in many ways.” Small town or not, Las Vegas is a place where change is the rule rather than the exception. This latest reinvention to a well-rounded cultural, innovative, entrepreneurial business and arts center is its most ambitious rebirth. As the Mayor summed up, “Las Vegas is an energized, exciting place to be. It’s a great time to be alive and a great time to live here.”

“You cannot have a city that does not have a strong, active, healthy center - the Core.”

Joe Lotito, Publisher of Trade Express Magazine and Mayor Goodman discussing the Downtown Project and the impact it will have on the Las Vegas economy

To learn more about the Downtown expansion and two extraordinary visionaries, Mayor Carolyn Goodman and Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, visit and 8

Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

The Deal Makers



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers


uick, what comes to your mind when I say the word “popcorn”? For most of us, it brings to mind the salty, buttery treat that we love to crunch while we watch a movie. For Laurie Sabol, popcorn is her passion and business. Laurie opened Popcorn Girl in 2009 with the idea of making a fun, neighborhood store.

“We want people who have moved here from other parts of the country to come in and get the experience of their own hometown,” she explains. “This is why we have all the sports-themed tins. People can come in and pick their favorite team or the team where they grew up. We have something for everyone.” With over sixty flavors of popcorn, Popcorn Girl has a flavor to satisfy even the most finicky palate. Most of the flavors have been customer requests, including their most popular flavor – Southwest Hot Wings. In addition to standard favorites like Dill Pickle, White Cheddar, Puppy Chow and Green Applicious, there are seasonal flavors like Pumpkin Pie during the holiday season and Chocolate-Covered Cherry in the spring. To celebrate Independence Day, they are offering a Patriotic mix of Strawberry (red), Vanilla (white) and Blueberry (blue). Popcorn is not the only item on the menu though. The store is overflowing with homemade fudge, salt water taffy, oldfashioned candies and bottles of old-fashioned sodas. They take great pride in using the finest ingredients to make their fudge and popcorn. They also pop popcorn throughout the day in the store to ensure freshness. The popularity of Popcorn Girl has been promoted through television appearances on the Food Network and Animal Planet. Next fall, Popcorn Girl is scheduled to appear on a Criss Angel special. All this notoriety has not only increased sales but has enabled Laurie to sell a master franchise to a group in Qatar on the Arabian Peninsula. Once the store has been built, Laurie will travel to the region to train the employees. “It’s pretty exciting. We are also looking to expand to Reno. We are currently scouting out locations. We are getting calls from different areas to open stores but we want to stay in Nevada for now. I’m proud to be in business in the town where I grew up.” In addition to having a thriving business, Popcorn Girl is very active in the community and with charitable events. They sponsor The Shriner’s and Governor’s Black Tie Golf Events in addition to the Joy Prom at the M Resort. With unmatched customer service (customers are greeted within five seconds of entering the store) and with gift ideas galore, Popcorn Girl is a unique experience from the moment you enter the store. Whether you like popcorn or not, the store brings to mind the five and dimes of yesteryear. “We are making memories for kids and recreating memories for older customers. I love to make people happy and that’s what the store does.” So, next time you are looking for that unique gift for the “friend that has everything”, or if you just want a tasty treat for yourself, go online at or drop by one of the Popcorn Girl’s locations: 8550 W Charleston Blvd, Ste. 109 or 1000 N. Green Valley Parkway, Ste. 510 in Henderson. Gift boxing is available for all occasions. They customize gift baskets for various events, party themes and holidays. Shipping is available for a reasonable rate for the contiguous 48 states. For orders outside the lower 48, call the store at 702-258-2676 or 702-568-0557 to place an order.



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

Sales and Marketing, Who Needs It? Kim from Green Valley wants to know – “So, what is the difference between sales and marketing? I do both and don’t know which is which” Kimmy, my little darling. How ya doin’? Let me share somethin’ with ya. Think about your companies like WalMart, Target, you know, the “Big Boys”. They rely purely on the marketing process to persuade people to shop there. I mean, when was the last time you walked in a store like that and some salesperson tried to close you on buying a certain type of toothpaste or a can or tomatas? I mean, wait a second, when did you ever see a salesperson at WalMart? You get me over here?

In today’s competitive market, the secret to success involves streamlining your brand’s message which will focus your direct Sales team and drive what makes you different. Now, this is not an easy thing to do, little Kimmy. It takes patience to let a marketing plan run long enough to actually start working. After all, Seattle Slew didn’t win the Triple Crown after only one race. In our world of instant gratification, social media and bein’ linked in and linked up to every type of computer and gadget today, a Salesperson does not need to knock on doors, just follow your Marketing plan. Effective Marketing combined with Direct Sales skills builds life-long relationships and closes many deals. And that, my friend is how business is done. Contact me:

The “Big Boys”, they rely strictly on their marketing and in-store advertising promotions. They create a buyer who walks in ready to buy one item and then adds more into the cart once they are already in the store. Contrastly, classic sales worked without any support from marketing – do you remember the door-to-door salesman? Nah, you’re probably too young for that. You know, the encyclopedia guys or the vacuum cleaner salesmen? If you were my age, you’d know that they relied on their sales skills and personalities to not only open doors but to close the deals. If they lacked sales skills, they didn’t eat! Ya hear what I’m sayin’? Now that was the life in the 50’s and 60’s. By the 70’s and 80’s, it was house parties and MLM (Multi-Level Marketing) companies making a big splash. By the early ’90′s, door-to-door sales and other pure direct sale companies went the way of “done and fuggetaboutit.” Sure, some are still around and the newbies pop up all the time, but mostly the companies that survived were the ones that found a way to give their sales guys marketing support. You know, like your Avon, Tupperware, Amway and Herbalife. With these companies, Marketing combined with Sales and a creative cookie-cutter formula makes them successful. I mean, when was the last time someone knocked on your door to sell you a vacuum.



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers


ne memorable evening, I was going out to get my groove on with my best friend at the time, Boobie (yes that was her name). Maria G. was better known as Boobie for two very obvious reasons. She was set to work that night in one of the city’s hottest shows, Minsky’s Follies at the Dunes.

“Minsky’s Goes to Paris” was the first topless show in Las Vegas. When the show opened in early 1957, it created controversy. The uproar from the local religious zealots and the Legion of Decency had city and state officials fielding phone calls of protest. Even the Las Vegas Sun was filled with columns of editorials denouncing the city’s move away from wholesome family fun. Boobie was perfect for Minsky’s show being “home grown” in all the right places. Her beauty and figure were all natural and she stood out as THE girl to watch. She and I had become great friends in high school even though we would fight over boys from time-to-time. I went to the Dunes that night to meet Boobie after the show for a little fun – and it started right away. I was in the place maybe five minutes when I hit a slot machine jackpot for $200. I felt like I had won a fortune! Of course, back in 1957, it was a fortune. With my newly won bounty, Boobie and I hit Downtown. We walked around the Golden Nugget spending a few dollars here and there. Then we headed to the Golden Gate, our regular hang-out, for the best 99 cent shrimp cocktail in town. And, with about $185 left from the $200 jackpot, Boobie and I were determined to eat our weight in shrimp! Boobie and I took the remaining winnings over to the Pioneer Club for a couple of drinks to wash down the shrimp and for a little Blackjack. That was when I met Pauley “the Twister” for the first time. Now his friends did not call him “the Twister” because he was a good dancer. To be honest, he was a horrible dancer. He dragged his left leg and had a limp due to a gunshot wound inflicted during World War II. . . or so he said. The Twister was a sexy older man of 28. He was a great kisser with baby blue eyes who treated me like a queen. . . and at 19 what else does a girl really need? I won multiple fortunes that night. Not only the money, but an interesting new guy who . . . (to be continued) Contact Me:



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

You seldom hear of a girl’s love for her car. Usually, love stories involve knights on white horses, beasts with magical spells cast on them or poets with large vocabularies. This is a different kind of love story. Justin Thyme Pontiac was my first automotive love and what was there not to love? His simple yet warrior-like body peppered with wounds lovingly inflicted by his first-time driver was compact yet intimidating to anyone worried about damage to their own car. His motor purred like a lover’s voice whispering sweet expressions of extraordinary gas mileage. His interior caressed his passengers in crushed velvet luxury. He was the white knight and stead combined in one. A thing of beauty he was, and no one could dissuade my love for him. Although born in Detroit, Justin was truly a California boy. When we were transferred to Rochester, New York, he lost all his energy for days. Fear enveloped me that my beloved Justin would never come back to life. It took a visit from the great healer, Elvis the mechanic, to restore his energy and for awhile, Justin was back to his playful ways. However, the harsh cold and snowy winters of Rochester were just too much for Justin to bear. As time went on his posterior began to give him issues. Embarrassingly, he lacked the bulk to provide proper traction in snow. As a result, disasters were narrowly averted. One particularly harrowing night during a sleet storm, he bravely fought the elements but could not overcome fishtailing 180 degrees in front of a police car. Though no one was injured, I began to waver in my devotion to Justin. . . I soon started to stray. Consumer Report Magazines found their way into my home and I would spend hours staring at the sensual, sleek and powerful new models, breathing hard with one hand on my . . . checkbook. I asked my Dad to drive whenever we went for test drives so Justin would not know. I felt like I needed to shower whenever I got home so that he would not smell my guilt or the “new car scent” that clung to me. After each of these dalliances, I returned to Justin, heart-in-hand and he would wordlessly accept me back. We stayed together seven years until the day I feared arrived, Justin’s cam shaft cracked. I listened with tears in my eyes as Elvis explained that he could save Justin but he would not recover properly. Years of rust from the salt on the roads had weakened my mighty warrior to a shell of his former self. It was time to say goodbye to my Justin. The Car Salesman waited impatiently as I tenderly caressed Justin’s steering wheel and fuzzy dashboard covering one last time. I removed the gold necklace from his rearview mirror pausing to fondle the gold rings on the chain. These would soon hang around the mirror of my new car but at that moment, my heart was heavy as if I had broken a promise. Within a few days, my new car arrived. Sampson P. Solara was a stark contrast to Justin. I admit he was sexy with his sleek lines, shiny new paint, firm wood paneling and oh, did he smell good. It wasn’t quite the love-at-first-sight experience that I shared with Justin but over time, Sampson (or Sammy) carved out a place in my heart. However, I think he knows that he is not my first love. No matter how long Sammy or any subsequent car is in my life, I’ll never forget Justin. I was twenty-eight years old when he entered my life. Way too old to be a car virgin, some would say. But, I had waited for the right moment and he entered my life, Justin Thyme. Contact me:


Cookin’ with Aunt Cookie

There is no region of Italy which does not offer at least one version of Pasta e Fagioli. Once upon a time, lard was used instead of oil, but for modern cooking this is somewhat too heavy. This rustic, nourishing soup spurred one of the many funny moments in my kitchen. Dinner time at our table was when the kids were invited to share their day. Each of my six kids had an opportunity to speak up and tell us what was going on at school or with their friends. One night, after a particularly tough day, I could tell my husband, Salvatore, was a little impatient with the kids. When it was Angelo’s turn to talk, he turned to me and said, “Mommy, somebody at school today said I eat too much pasta and I’m a fool.” Sal replied to him, “Angelo, somebody called you a Pasta e Fagioli? I started to laugh so hard, I almost fell over. Angelo said, “No Papa. He told me I eat a lot of pasta and I’m a fool.” Salvatore’s voice raised and his face got a little red. “Angelo, you can’t take everything people say to heart. Are you a fool? NO! But, not for nothing son you do eat a lot of pasta, kid.” The whole table erupted with laughter except for Angelo. I saw him get a little teary-eyed and I spoke up. “Angelo, sometimes kids say cruel things and you should never take it to heart and let it bother you.” My dear boy looked at me and smiled. The other kids were all still giggling while Sal rolled his eyes and made his funny clown faces. “So Cookie, what are we having for dinner tonight?” he asked. I started to think for a second and then I laughed so hard I almost peed on the floor. “We’re having Pasta e Fagioli.” All the kids started to laugh again, pointed at Angelo and called him, “A pasta-head fool.” We all laughed even harder and that night, my Pasta e Fagioli became a famous household dish. Years later, when Angelo brought over his first girlfriend (Maria De Lorenzo who I will never forget - what a sweetheart), my older son Tommy stopped by and said, “Hey Ma, what are you making? It smells like your famous Pasta e Fagioli.” Then he saw his brother Angelo and said, “Hey there, look who it is - the ‘Pasta-head Fool’.” Ten years later Angelo was still the “Pasta Head Fool”.

Pasta e Fagioli (Bean and pasta soup) Ingredients (for 4): 9 oz. Dried Beans 3 oz. Prosciutto with its fat 7 oz. Small Pasta (ditalini) 2 tbsp Tomato Pulp Celery, carrot, onion, bay leaf, grated parmesan, olive oil, salt and pepper Preparations: The evening before, soak the beans in plenty of water. The next day drain and rinse them and put them into a pot, covering them with cold water. Add a bay leaf and bring to a boil. Let them cook for about an hour and a half. Salt the water only when they are semi-cooked. Sieve half the beans into a paste, put them back into their broth and remove the bay leaf. Finely chop the prosciutto with half an onion, half a carrot and a celery stalk then brown the mixture in three tablespoons of oil. When the vegetables are cooked, add the tomato sauce and a little hot water. When the mixture is reduced, put it into the pot with the beans, adjust the salt to taste and bring once more to a boil. Then add the pasta and cook for another ten minutes. Add a little oil, some pepper and two tablespoons of parmesan to the soup which should be quite thick. 18

Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers



Connecting Deals with the Deal Makers

Trade Express Magazine