Built to succeed

Ryan Crolly, left, and Trevor Lamondin joined forces to create Complete Concrete Forming. With the help of a loan from the CDC, the duo started from scratch and have built a business with a rock-solid foundation that is growing at a rapid pace.   Building a business is a little like building a house: without…

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CDC offers kick-start

For a motorcyclist, there’s nothing quite like hitting the open road on a finely-tuned hot rod. Scott Smith loves that freedom so much, he’s turned his passion for bikes into a business that puts him in the driver’s seat – in more ways than one. Four years ago, husband and wife team Scott Smith and…

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Knight expands business

For Tyler Knight, the road to entrepreneurial success has taken some unexpected twists and turns. Originally, he thought his creative flair and eye for detail would be qualities that would help him become a first-rate cabinet maker. But after learning the trade, he realized it wasn’t for him. So, he took a job at Kahuna…

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CDC helps entrepreneur get business up and running

Inspired by healthy living and nature, Robb MacDonald has successfully taken his passions and turned them into an influential, multifaceted business. Originally a marketing and communications consultant, Robb used his social marketing skills and a multi-disciplinary approach to educate communities about healthy eating, and living a more active lifestyle. His focus on behaviour change pushed…

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CDC Success Story: Harold + Ferne

Meet young entrepreneur Olivia Neal, owner of Harold + Ferne: The Local Goods Co. and CDC Success Story! After receiving a BA in Political Science, Olivia returned to her hometown of Orillia, and it wasn’t long before the artist in her saw a need to display the area’s ever growing community of makers and artisans.…

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CDC Success Story: EarthTreks

Meet Alison Braun, founder of EarthTreks. Alison combined her love of travel in search of the world’s abundance of natural and cultural treasures, with her personal commitment to effect positive social and environmental change to form the vision of EarthTreks. Her business was shortlisted and selected as one of Western Ontario Community Futures most recent…

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The art of small business

After receiving a BA in Political Science, Olivia Neal returned to her hometown of Orillia, and it wasn’t long before the artist in her saw a need to display the area’s ever growing community of makers and artisans. Named after her beloved great grandparents, her business Harold + Ferne: The Local Goods Co. was born…

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Chamber hands out business awards

The Orillia Chamber of Commerce recognized local businesses Thursday night during its annual Business Achievement Awards. Several businesses and a couple of non-profits received awards during the ceremony at Hawk Ridge Golf and Country Club. Award winners are as follows: Entrepreneurial Initiative Momma Mari’s Harold + Ferne: The Local Goods Co. Driverseat Orillia Rustica Pizza…

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Uke-a-Ladies work to bring music to kids

  The moment Sherry McKinnon and Gayle Wells met they knew they would be friends—but they never imagined they would begin Hummin’ & Strummin’ Music Company together. Gayle, in search of a new career, had just moved to Orillia with her family after 20 years in corporate sales. With a strong background in music she…

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The Kitchen Garden Farm is the brainchild of Greg Simms, pictured here with his family.

CDC Success Story: Finding peace through organic farming

After nine years of dedication, Greg Simms’ career as a professional firefighter began to exact its toll on his health. Greg found a sanctuary in his small garden while facing his health challenges, and that’s where he found peace and healing and discovered his passion for organic farming. “I love to work with my hands…

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Succession planning another specialty of local CDC

Celebrating her 15th year in the printing industry, Carey Frantz is ready to take over the business her father first purchased in 2001. Impression House, located at 44 Mississaga St. W., takes care of all of your graphic design, binding, copying, printing, and promotional needs. As owner Bob Frantz nears his retirement, Carey decided to…

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Driverseat hits the road in Orillia

Andy Moore, an entrepreneur at heart weary of working for someone else, decided to put himself in the driver’s seat. Literally. With financial assistance from the Orillia Area Community Development Corporation (CDC), the local resident recently opened a Driverseat franchise. “It’s a great concept,” Moore said of Driverseat. “You’re helping people and you’re keeping the…

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Business one to watch for 20 years

  Located at 106 Mississaga St. E. in a beautiful old building built in 1881, Perfect Timing transports you back to yesteryear with its brick walls, fireplace, wing-back chairs, and countless antiques – mainly clocks. Kind and approachable shop owners Rick and Aime Brownbill welcomed me in, and showed me what they were currently working…

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Success Story: Up and running

RELEASED: Monday, March 28, 2016 Retired and restless, but full of energy and enthusiasm, Shirley and Rene Cormier decided to become entrepreneurs at an age when many of their vintage are content to put their feet up and relax. “I just need to do something, to keep busy, so I decided to open my own…

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Bolen sets up shop in Orillia with CDC’s help

RELEASED: Thursday, February 25, 2016   For almost a decade, Amanda Bolen has been working her way to the top of her field in massage therapy and all its modalities. As a young and driven female entrepreneur, she has always dreamed of owning and operating her own clinic, and when her client base began to…

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Client Testimonial: KnightVision Video Productions

Several months ago, I applied to the Community Devel opment Corp. – CDC for their Community Capacity Building Fund grant. I was privileged to receive a grant from the CDC 2 years ago to upgrade my computer system to handle 4K video and applied this year to help fund a full frame camera for weddings.…

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Community support sets Orillia apart for new business owner

RELEASED: Monday, November 16, 2015   Brandon Peacock wants to help Orillians ‘reach their peak’ by helping them improve their overall health. Peacock, owner of the new Peak Performance gym located at 408 Laclie Street, says he went to school knowing that he wanted to someday start a business in Orillia. “When I went to…

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Orillia Area CDC helps inspection business off the ground

RELEASED: July 9, 2015 As the stressful commute to Toronto began to take its toll, Ray McGill decided there was a better way to make a living. With more than a quarter-century of experience in the fire-alarm industry and a desire to run his own business, he struck out on his own, opening RMcGill Inspections…

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Agency Helps Company Get Its Feet Wet

RELEASED: May 31, 2015 For almost 15 years, On the Water Designs, just north of Orillia, has been making waves in the custom-dock market. The company works in dock manufacturing, sales, accessories and installation. “We manufacture innovative aluminum docks — everything from pole docks to floating docks and tower docks,” said company general manager Brandon…

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CDC Helps Get Company Off The Ground

RELEASED: May 8, 2015 James Foy loves to work with his hands and, even when he was busy with the demands of work, found time to dabble in landscaping. Recently, he decided to marry that passion with his long-held desire to start his own business. With financial help from the Orillia Area Community Development Corporation…

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Award Winning Pumpkin Business Gets Help From Local CDC

Simon Southwell is a successful businessman. He can rhyme off the financials related to his growing enterprise like a pro; his dynamic sales pitch has wowed judges and got him inside the corridors of power. And he’s just 12 years old. “I guess you could say I’m on the ball,” Simon, who has autism, says…

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White Lion’s Tea House

Turning a dream into a reality requires hard work, blood, sweat, tears – and money. Laurie Neill was armed with all those critical qualities as she diligently worked to transform the former El Castel Steak House into the quaint tea room she had long envisioned. But the renovations were much more onerous, extensive and expensive…

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Saturday Afternoons

When the chance to purchase Saturday Afternoons Home Store presented itself, Michelle Madden jumped at the opportunity. “I definitely have a flair for anything related to the home and interior design, so Saturday Afternoons is a great fit for me,” said Madden, who said being downtown was critical. “To me, downtown is the heart and…

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Orillia Woodworking

Martin Stannus, an experienced general contractor, purchased Orillia Woodworking Inc. this summer. He said the well-respected company’s competent staff, coupled with its strong core business attracted his interest. And, with the help of a loan from the Orillia Area Community Development Corporation (OACDC), he was able to complete the purchase in June. “We are grateful…

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Lake Country Grill

Lake Country Grill

Banks rarely line up to offer new businesses financing. And if it’s a new restaurant on the menu, they are even less likely to ante up cash. That’s why the Orillia Area Community Development Corporation (CDC) was so critical to Diana Roman and Rob Frost when they decided to open a new eatery in Orillia.…

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Going with Gibb

When Brian Gibb lost his job at Casino Rama – alongside dozens of other employees – he found himself at a crossroads. Like most people, he polished his resume and applied for 292 jobs before attending a job fair at Orillia Square mall – it was a decision that would dramatically alter his path. “The…

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Carthew Bay General Store

A bike ride with his children changed the course of Senti Rasa’s life – and altered the destiny of the general store that is the heart of Carthew Bay. “I have a cottage on Line 12 and me and the kids decided to bike to the Carthew Bay Store for ice cream,” recalled Rasa, who…

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Autoshow Orillia

Most people don’t have a stash of cash to buy a vehicle. At Autoshow Orillia, that’s not a problem. “We work with the individual, look at their credit history and help them determine what they can afford,” explained Chad McIntyre, who has experience adjudicating credit and arranging financing. He said Autoshow Orillia offers credit as…

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