Cassie and Ashton Preston have opened Steady Flow Growler House & Tasting Room, in Spokane Valley.
The new tap house occupies 1,300 square feet of leased space in the Sullivan Town Square Retail Center, at 328 N. Sullivan Road.
Steady Flow has 39 taps that will rotate craft beverages with emphasis on regionally made products, says Cassie Preston.
The beverage selection includes craft beer, hard cider, wine, hard root beer, and cold-brew coffee.
“We’re focusing on quality and establishing relationships with local microbreweries,” Preston says, adding that Steady Flow’s specialty will be in offering seasonal beers, limited releases, brewery collaborations, and local favorites.
The location, which has a Northwest industrial design theme, has 20 seats where people can order sample trays, pints, and half pints.
“We’ll have growler gear,” she adds, for customers to order quart, half-gallon, and gallon containers of their favorite beverages to take home.
Preston says Steady Flow has four part-time employees in addition to the owners.
She says she and her husband are U.S. Air Force veterans who wanted to turn one of their passions into a business when they returned to civilian life in the Inland Northwest.
“We had this craft beer idea a couple of years back, when we were stationed in Japan,” she says.
Commercial real estate agents Sharon Reynolds and Doug Byrd, both of Spokane-based Byrd Real Estate Group LLC, and Colin Conway, of Spokane-based Kiemle & Hagood Co., negotiated Steady Flow’s lease.
Former Ecova Inc. employee Erik Makinson has started Resource Synergy, a new Spokane-based sustainability consulting business.
Makinson says his goal in starting the company is to assist small- to medium-sized businesses in reducing costs by wasting less and recycling more. Makinson says he started Resource Synergy because he saw an opportunity in Spokane for businesses to become more sustainable.
“When I moved to Spokane two years ago, I would see so many businesses with trash dumpsters but no recycling dumpsters beside them,” says Makinson. “This was discouraging to me because I know that 80 to 90 percent of office waste is recyclable,” he says.
Prior to starting Resource Synergy, Makinson spent six years working with Ecova to build a waste consulting portion into the company’s energy and sustainability business.
“It became their fastest growing line of business, and now has 60 employees working with 100 clients at over 60,000 sites,” Makinson says.
He began his interest in sustainability while working with the Coca-Cola Company. He helped it develop a compostable soda cup and fostered collaboration between Coca-Cola and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. on a global sustainability strategy.
Makinson is working from a home office and has just begun the process of finding clients, but he has plans to grow the company in response to the needs of its client base.
“Office space and employees will likely be in our future,” he says. “However the plan is for very intentional, thoughtful growth.”
In addition to helping businesses implement effective recycling programs, Makinson hopes to build a network of local businesses that are able to reuse one another’s trash. “It’s called a circular economy,” says Makinson. “What one business throws away, another may be able to use,” he says.
Having recently moved to Spokane from Missoula, Kathleen Jenkinson has started actively marketing Abundant Living Retreats & Wellness Programs here.
The company, which now is based in Spokane, relies on subcontract employees and offers getaway packages for individuals and groups. Such packages include activities centered on personal and professional growth and development, Jenkinson says.
Examples of the types of getaways her company offers include four-day getaways to Coeur d’Alene Casino Resort Hotel in Worley, Idaho. Once there, Jenkinson and subcontracted employees lead motivational seminars, exercise, and fitness sessions for clients.
A $600 package includes a welcome reception, workshops, workouts, spa services and a lake cruise on Lake Coeur d’Alene. Attendees are responsible for their meals, lodging, and travel, Jenkinson says.
The company, which Jenkinson founded in 2005, initially offered getaway packages designed exclusively for women. However, as time passed, Jenkinson says, she widened the scope of the business to include men as she saw them facing the same challenges as her female counterparts.
A couple here who own a Once Upon a Child franchise children’s clothing and merchandise resale store have opened a North Spokane outlet at 6005 N. Division.
The store occupies about 4,500 square feet of space in a retail strip center there.
Tom Lewis co-owns the business with his wife, Deb Strohmaier. Following the success of their first store location at 14401 E. Sprague, the two decided to open a second location.
Lewis says the new store’s renovations have cost about $250,000.
“We’re still working on both interior and exterior projects,” he says.
Lewis says the store employs 10 people, including seven new hires and three transfers from the Spokane Valley location. That store still will have 12 employees.
Once Upon A Child sells children’s clothing, toys, games, books, movies, baby equipment, and some furniture. The store begins by buying used items and building up an inventory, then selling those items.
The north location opened to buy stock from customers Nov. 2nd.
Lewis says he hopes to have $60,000 in stock before the store opens to sell.
“Depending on construction and how well things go, I think we’re looking at opening to sell by the first of the year,” he says.
The parent company for the Once Upon A Child franchise chain is Minneapolis-based Winmark Corp., which also franchises Play It Again Sport, and Plato’s Closet, among other business brands.
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