Bella Salon and Spa
Aug01

Bella Salon and Spa

By Karen Gardner Walking into Bella Salon and Spa in Hagerstown, located behind a bank and across busy Dual Highway from a pharmacy, feels like walking into another world. Tammy Shindle opened Bella Salon in 2001 with four hairstyling stations. By then, she had 20 years of experience cutting and styling hair in Hagerstown, and she was ready to move to the next step of owning her own salon. Her father-in-law suggested she choose a name near the beginning of the alphabet, to help the salon’s visibility in the Yellow Pages. “That shows you how much things have changed since then,” she said with a smile. Since then, Shindle has been slowly adding services. She’s added a full range of color, toner and foil options. Brow tints. Color fusion. Texturizing and straightening. Hair extensions. Manicures and pedicures came next. Then came skin treatments, eye rescue, lip renewal and hand renewal. Manicures for men. Nail art. Paraffin treatment for hands and feet. Waxing, from basic bikini to Brazilian. Eyelash extensions and makeup applications. More recently, massage has joined the list of spa treatments at Bella Salon and Spa. Traditional, deep tissue, hot stone, prenatal and reflexology are all available at Bella. “As we grew, we decided to offer spa services,” Shindle said. “It’s something our customers were asking for.” When Bella Salon and Spa opened, the business occupied one-third of a building that housed three separate businesses. Shindle’s father-in-law owned the building and suggested she open her own salon. Shindle graduated from Washington County Career and Technical High School in 1982 as a licensed cosmetologist, and had worked her way up to salon manager at another salon. Located on the other side of the building was her sister-in-law’s travel agency. A year after Shindle opened her salon, the third tenant moved out, and Shindle decided to expand into the middle area, allowing her to expand her offerings. As her business grew, she added more services. About six years after her first expansion, Bella added a second story to the salon, with a locker area and offices for employees. Two years ago, Shindle’s sister-in-law decided to move her travel business to her home, and Shindle and her husband Keith decided that was the perfect time to expand the salon and spa business even more. They now own the building, and Keith served as the general contractor for the expansion. “It was a very long process from planning to execution,” Shindle said. The salon is a Redken Elite salon, and Shindle worked with Redken to plan a new color bar for hair coloring. She worked with Peter and Tess Millard, salon designers...

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Berkeley Pottery
Aug01

Berkeley Pottery

Written by Cami Coulter Queen Street in Martinsburg, WV houses a variety of businesses from restaurants and tattoo parlors to salons and fabric shops but a new kind of business just renovated a space on the busy street and put up their “We’re Open!” sign in June. The bright yellow and orange colored storefront of Berkeley Pottery, that can’t be missed, adds a different kind of business to the heart of Martinsburg. Walking into Berkeley Pottery customers can first see tables and chairs for painting, with abstract art designs on the walls, but also shelves holding more than a hundred pre-fired ceramics they can chose from to paint and glaze. All through out the space, the store has friendly, colorful lighting and fun music playing in the background. Continuing further into the space is a cute and quaint social bar and then several pottery wheels held in the back where owner, David Carroll, might be teaching a class to beginner potters. Originally from Greenbrier County, David and his business partner, Mark Thompson, moved to Martinsburg in hopes of their big dream to lift off. They chose Martinsburg because it is very well situated geographically between three major interstates. “It’s a cultural hub for the Potomac highlands,” David explained. He says the surrounding areas like the Eastern Panhandle and Winchester look toward Martinsburg for leadership and cultural affairs. After waiting seven years, they settled down in Berkeley County. Finding an awesome deal on a house from fore closure, they bought and restored it into a place they could call home. David did the same for the thriving Berkeley Pottery. The building had been vacant for thirty years and was in need of some definite TLC. “We renovated it and put our heart and soul into it. I spent six weeks on my hands and knees scrubbing the floors down because they were covered with shag carpet,” David said. The flooring under that shag carpet is hardwood flooring from the original building as well as the plaster on the walls and the ceiling. The brick on the walls were made right in Martinsburg at the Continental Brick Company and many of them show the Continental stamps on the sides. The owners also replaced the stark, florescent lighting with warmer, softer lights to create a more cozy and inviting space. Berkeley Pottery holds three lines of business. Customers are able to paint their own pottery by choosing a ceramic on the shelves provided. Then you can paint and add designs on your chosen ceramic any way you would like. After that, the employees will glaze it in a kiln, which makes the...

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Mikey’s Mini Donuts, family-owned for the whole family
Aug01

Mikey’s Mini Donuts, family-owned for the whole family

By Karen Gardner Mini doughnuts can be a mouth-watering treat, without the guilt of eating a whole doughnut. To get some mini doughnuts, head over to Mikey’s Mini Donuts at the Premium Outlets Food Court in Hagerstown. Mikey’s Mini Donuts are the perfect complement to a shopping trip at the outlet mall. Michael Rosario opened Mikey’s Mini Donuts eight months ago in Hagerstown, where he lives with his wife and 1-year-old child. “It’s a family-owned business,” he said. His wife helps him out, when she’s not working at her job, and his cousin is a business partner. His doughnuts appeal to children and adults alike. “My doughnuts taste like funnel cakes,” he said. That funnel cake taste is baked into the tiny, 2-inch diameter treats, which come with one topping. Many people add a second topping for an extra 50 cents. Toppings include powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar, Nutella, chocolate syrup, peanut butter, jelly, marshmallow, marshmallow syrup, strawberry syrup, chopped bacon, chopped peanut, chopped almonds, chocolate chip, Fruity Pebbles and M&Ms. A clear container of tiny, colorful marshmallows sits on a counter waiting to be added to the doughnuts. Other jars contain chopped nuts, Fruity Pebbles and chocolate chips. Syrup containers sit ready to squiggle their contents onto the doughnut treats. A Kitchen Aid sits ready to mix up the dough for the doughnuts. “I make the doughnuts fresh from scratch,” Rosario said. “I make one or two pounds of dough at a time.” The dough is then shaped into the doughnuts and slipped into the fryer. Rosario churns out five orders per batch of dough, and mixes new batches repeatedly to keep up with demand. The tiny doughnuts have even smaller holes, and are similar to doughnut holes, except each one is actually a tiny doughnut. “Kids like to watch me make them,” Rosario said. Besides doughnuts, Rosario offers Waffle Pops, which are strips of Belgian waffle dough on a kebab stick. He also makes these fresh to order. Waffle Pops come with toppings, just like the doughnuts. The whole process of frying dough into a Mini Donut or Waffle Pop takes about two minutes, complete with toppings. Mini Donuts come in bags of eight or 12. Or you can order The Mikey, four Mini Donuts and a scoop of ice cream. Rosario, 34, is a native of Puerto Rico. He and his wife have lived in Hagerstown for about eight years. Rosario has worked as a bank teller, in a warehouse and as a dishwasher, but, he said, “I never found my niche.”  He added, “I’ve always daydreamed about being a business owner.” Rosario learned about the mini...

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Adoring the Views of Harpers Ferry at River Level
Aug01

Adoring the Views of Harpers Ferry at River Level

To experience the Harpers Ferry natural environment was ‘worth a voyage across the Atlantic’ to Thomas Jefferson. Don’t miss it. By Bonnie Williamson In 1783, Thomas Jefferson once stood on Jefferson Rock, now part of the Harpers Ferry National Park in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia. He wrote, “The passage of the Patowmac [Potomac] through the Blue Ridge is perhaps one of the most stupendous scenes in Nature…On your right comes up the Shenandoah, having ranged along the foot of the mountain a hundred miles to seek a vent. On your left approaches the Patowmac in quest of a passage also. In the moment of their junction they rush together against the mountain, rend it asunder and pass off to the sea… This scene is worth a voyage across the Atlantic.” The beautiful and majestic environment along the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers, and the rivers themselves helped a local business, designed for those with a sense of adventure and love of nature, expand far beyond its original offering of white water rafting. River Riders Family Adventure Resort has the experienced personnel and attention to detail to give its customers an unforgettable experience from the challenge of white water rafting to the joy of seeing Mother Nature’s treasures. “We have listened to our customers over the years and give them the kinds of adventures they wanted,” says Tyler Tummolo, River Riders general manager. “We are the premier outfitters year round.” Tummolo says River Riders started out concentrating on white water raftering. The organization began in the early 1970s as Shenandoah River Rafters. More property in the area was purchased over the years with construction of the current facility at 408 Alstadts Hill Rd. beginning in 2003. River Riders is owned by Matt and Laura Knott. White water rafting is still part of River Riders, but now the company offers tubing, aerial forest adventure parks, kayaking, canoeing, mountain biking, lodging options, fishing canopy and tour/zip lining. “We were the first in the area to have zip lining,” Tummolo says. “It really is a thrilling experience. We had one couple do zip lining and other activities for their honeymoon They thought all of it was phenomenal. Something they would remember for the rest of their lives.” A zip line consists of a pulley suspended on a cable, usually made of stainless steel, mounted on a slope. It is designed to enable a user propelled by gravity to travel from the top to the bottom of the inclined cable by holding on to, or attaching to, the freely moving pulley. For those who might be a little nervous about this adventure, Tummolo says the...

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Horses with Hearts – Changing Lives one Rider at a Time
Jun01

Horses with Hearts – Changing Lives one Rider at a Time

by M.T. Decker Horses with Hearts began as a simple dream – helping one horse lover get back on a horse after life-saving cancer surgery left her blind and robbed her of her motor skills. The horse lover in question was Lindsey Connelly, a young girl who refused to give up on her dream. When she met Lindsey in 1999, Kay Barkwill was touched by her love of horses and her determination to ride again; Kay became just as determined to get Lindsey back on a horse. She teamed up with Cathy Dodson, a thoroughbred riding instructor.  Together, they began researching what they would need to make Lindsey’s dream come true. Even though Lindsey’s family moved away, Kay and Cathy continued working towards the goal of getting her back on a horse. Unfortunately, Lindsey passed away before they could give her her miracle. But, they found a way to keep Lindsey’s dream alive by sharing it with others. This dream became Horses with Hearts, a not-for-profit center that provides equine activities for individuals with special needs. “It transforms the lives of everyone it touches,” Kay explains.  “And the changes are profound.” In many cases, the parents of a special needs child are told what their child will never be able to do.  Horses with Hearts takes that list and helps people with special needs, find another way. “Because a horse’s stride is close to a human stride, it engages the rider’s core,” Kay explains. For children who have to wear braces to stand, they have no real way to exercise. By engaging their core, horseback riding gives them the strength they need to walk. “I’ve seen children who were told they would never walk, learn to walk after riding…” And the changes don’t just stop there.  The volunteers at Horses with Hearts are reminded just how blessed they are. They are witnesses to, and part of, changing lives. When you can come out and work with the horses, it changes your life. When you’re disabled, and the world becomes a list of “you can’t,” working with a horse brings something normal and beautiful into your life. When you volunteer, you become a part of this miracle, and you get to witness the profound changes people experience. “We work with one rider at a time, and each rider has a horse that they ride,” Kay explains. Working with the horses also builds confidence and has broken through some barriers where nothing else worked. “We had one young man, he was on the autistic spectrum and non-verbal,” Kay explains.  “When his family moved, his mother told him that summer would be...

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Steak and Seafood for the Whole Family
Jun01

Steak and Seafood for the Whole Family

By PAUL LONG Hoss’s Steakhouse has 35 locations across Pennsylvania, from Chambersburg to Erie to Williamsport. But the restaurant at 195 Aikens Center in Martinsburg holds the distinction of being the only Hoss’s outside of Pennsylvania. And while other locations in New York and Virginia have closed in recent years, the Martinsburg Hoss’s is thriving, according to general manager Dallas Grim. “I feel like we have a very loyal customer base,” said Grim, who has been with Hoss’s since 1996, just three years after it opened in Martinsburg. The company itself was founded in 1983. Grim began his career as a dishwasher, making minimum wage – which was just $4.25 an hour at the time. He stayed with the company even after going away to college, and he worked his way up the ladder until, in 2006, he was promoted to general manager. Since then, he said, the local labor market has gotten tighter as Martinsburg and the Eastern Panhandle have continued to grow. There are more restaurants in the area now, and so potential employees have more options from which to choose. “When I started,” Grim said, “I could count the number of restaurants in Martinsburg. Now they’re everywhere.” Still, filling a vacancy has never been a struggle. Hoss’s currently has about 55 employees, both full- and part-time. Grim said his new hires often come through referrals from current employees, drawn by a set of perks that includes being closed for seven holidays every year, which, according to Grim, is practically unheard of in the restaurant industry. And once they arrive, many of those employees stick around for a while. One worker had been at Hoss’s for more than two decades before recently moving to Florida. A couple of them have been at the restaurant for more than 15 years, and several others have at least a decade of service under their belts. Many of Hoss’s customers come from Martinsburg, Spring Mills, Falling Waters and Shepherdstown, while some regulars come in from Maryland on a regular basis and a few found their way to Martinsburg after the Hoss’s location in Winchester closed a few years ago. The restaurant’s proximity to Interstate 81 has also been good for business. Grim sees people coming in from nearby hotels, and, he said, quite a few out-of-state travelers make a point of stopping at Hoss’s whenever they travel through Martinsburg. Grim said many of the children who used to come to Hoss’s when he first started working there are all grown up now and often bring their families into the restaurant. Hoss’s Restaurant is known for its all-you-can-eat salad bar, which also...

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