July 25, 2024

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Valley News – Base Line: Dairy Twirl proprietors get into towing, automotive small business

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When Brent Murray was a Lebanon paramedic, he often dealt with people in disaster and urgent have to have of support. He claims that teaching is a good background for his newest enterprise.

Murray and his spouse and business enterprise husband or wife, Cinnamon Murray, have accomplished back again-to-back acquisitions of Bob’s Provider Center in White River Junction and Grizzaffi’s Towing & Recovery in Lebanon. That puts the Murrays in command of a fleet of a dozen AAA-contracted tow vans, producing them just one of the major tow functions in the Upper Valley.

And also thrusts Brent Murray again into the rescue business enterprise.

“There are a whole lot of similarities among operating as a paramedic and aiding motorists,” he observed. “Emergency roadside help is quite close to the appear and really feel of staying an EMT. You by no means know what you are likely to discover when you answer to a contact,” introducing that the two require “helping individuals in have to have.”

The Murrays are most likely finest known as the couple who took above Lebanon’s beloved soft-provide ice cream stand Dairy Twirl in 2013, a favored photo-op for politicians on the marketing campaign trail. Until 2018, they also owned a string of Verizon cellphone outlets in New Hampshire and Vermont, which were being offered to Amcomm Wi-fi.

Brent Murray said he essentially began chatting with William “Billy” Grizzaffi, the late operator of Grizzaffi’s Towing, a couple yrs ago, in advance of Grizzaffi was struck by a train and killed in Maine final October. At the exact same time he was in talks with Grizzaffi, Murray stated they have been contacted by their enterprise broker and knowledgeable that Bob Perkins, operator of Bob’s Service Middle, was retiring and desired to sell his small business.

“We could develop synergy by getting towing on the two sides of the river, two places,” Murray discussed.

The Murrays also obtained Grizzaffi’s related company, GT&R Vehicle Income and Provider in West Lebanon. They are now renamed Montshire Towing and Montshire Automotive. But Murray stated he will continue with the name Bob’s Company Centre, which also encompasses a very regarded car mend garage, propane enterprise and comfort keep.

Perkins is encouraging the Murrays with the changeover but normally mentioned he is on the lookout ahead to lifestyle in decreased equipment.

“I’ll be helping out as very best I can for a although, a number of hours a day till golf period commences,” Perkins claimed through electronic mail final 7 days. “It will be 34 many years in two weeks that I’ve been here, 11 yrs in a administration posture and then virtually 23 as operator. Looking forward to maybe a tiny slower pace and a small additional free time.”

(The events declined to discuss phrases of the transaction for the small business but Hartford serious estate records exhibit Perkins bought the service middle real estate to the Murrays in February for $1 million).

Murray said that on the surface area there may not look to be substantially in widespread with phone suppliers, ice cream and towing. But in actuality each individual of the businesses are grounded in the group and have customer assistance at the core, two conditions that are key for the Murrays.

“It’s just the two of us that are powering everything we do,” Murray reported, detailing their enterprise philosophy is “everyone is dealt with quite and with respect. Area possession is vital.”

Hoffman-Kiess can take GMEDC reins

The Haynes administration has specified way to the Hoffman-Kiess administration.

Erika Hoffman-Kiess, who for the previous calendar year has been operating with Vital Communities in the vital overall economy plan, is the new executive director of Green Mountain Financial Development Corp., taking over from Bob Haynes, who is retiring soon after 5 several years as head of the regional progress agency and a approximately 5-10 years vocation in professional growth in the Upper Valley and Vermont.

“It’s pretty major news in my everyday living,” Haynes stated, noting that he will continue “part time” to support the White River Junction-based mostly GMEDC on behalf of a few initiatives he aided start, which includes a new baby care centre in Randolph, remediation of a brownfield web site in Bethel and a solar landfill undertaking in Thetford. “I’ll be busy on some days, and other days I’ll be mowing and rowing.”

Haynes, who rowed at Dartmouth and stayed in the Higher Valley immediately after he graduated in 1973, estimates he worked with some 200 organizations in the 30-city GMEDC district with web-site acquisition, feasibility reports, securing authorities and non-public funding and career training due to the fact he took more than from Joan Goldstein in 2015.

“I’ve liked it immensely and satisfied a ton of people, but it is time for me to go on,” Haynes reported.

There was no lack of candidates to uncover his successor — 24 apps, seven interviews (by using Zoom), two finalists and then “a unanimous by the board to go with Erika,” Haynes explained.

Hoffman-Kiess, a Vermont indigenous, experienced invested additional than a decade functioning in Cambodia, Bangladesh and Pakistan in the global aid sector prior to returning to her property condition to open up her personal consulting agency specializing in economic and workforce progress in 2010. At Critical Communities, she served assemble a analyze exhibiting how buying local assists to strengthen the Higher Valley financial state as properly coordinate pandemic-associated details for neighborhood firms.

Amid Hoffman-Kiess’ priorities at GMEDC will be encouraging collaboration amongst Upper Valley businesses “to perform together toward broader group development.”

Environmentally friendly screens at Blue Mountain Guitar

For quite a few of its 41 yrs in small business, songs instrument keep Blue Mountain Guitar has been like a rolling stone.

First opening in 1980 as an acoustic guitar shop in the basement of Lebanon Pet & Aquarium Center, Blue Mountain Guitar relocated to the row of merchants in LaValley’s Colonial Plaza, then moved throughout the parking whole lot into the area formerly occupied by Costumania right before closing in 2016 to become an on-line-only retail outlet.

But a calendar year later on Blue Mountain Guitar opened a tiny retail shop across the highway from Colby-Sawyer in New London and then, in 2019, returned to West Lebanon with a retail store in Glen Highway Plaza.

Now Blue Mountain Guitar has moved again into what is its fifth place in West Lebanon: the house previously occupied by lights retailer Illuminations, which has been vacant considering that the keep shut in 2018.

“We’re accomplishing this so we can do all our shipping out of a single area,” reported Barb McKelvy, operator of Blue Mountain Guitar. The enterprise, which had been delivery to on-line customers out of each its New London and West Lebanon stores, will now consolidate all warehousing and shipping out of West Lebanon, where by the new retail store has twice the space as the former just one, McKelvy claimed.

Blue Mountain G
uitar also entered a new marketplace the previous calendar year that is undertaking astonishingly well (or possibly not so surprisingly): online video and audio equipment for on the net Zoom video calls, McKelvy reports. (It’s even possible, in situation you want to stream your own basement weather report about the world wide web, to get a inexperienced display at Blue Mountain Guitar.)

“There’s been a genuine desire for Zoom devices,” she states.

Get hold of John Lippman at [email protected].

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