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More than two dozen vendors expected for Say ‘I Do’ expo

Posted On: 9/18/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– More than two dozen vendors are expected at the Say “I Do” wedding expo at the Atlantic Hotel     on Friday, Sept. 26. Billed as one-stop shopping for brides to be, the event features photographers, florists, wedding cakes, venues, jewelry, invitations, services, gifts, entertainment, wedding attire and beauty vendors from 5-8 p.m. at the Atlantic Hotel. Dance Moves and Manners bring a “mini-seminar” on how to gain confidence and pull off the ever-tricky first dance. Giveaways include certificates worth $150 in private lessons. Each person who stops by the booth receives a minimum $10 certificate. Call 302-222-3755 or visit www.dancemovesandmanners.com. Origami Owl-Bridal Collection will display their new line of jewelry for the bride and the all the women involved in her big day. Products include the Bow-Quet locket for the brides’ flowers, necklaces, bracelets and earrings. Call 443-859-7977. Cowger Entertainment will gi...
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White Lotus Bodyworks offers healing alternatives

Posted On: 9/18/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– Opened in early September, White Lotus Bodyworks brings an alternative and holistic health approach to healing. The new business, located at 10815-A Grays Corner Road in Berlin, inside CrossFit, offers Swedish, therapeutic, sports, deep tissue and all-natural facelift massage. Owner and licensed massage therapist Michele L. Eppard was a former co-owner of Baked Desserts Café in Berlin. “I just went to the Harris School of Business Massage School (in Delaware), and here I am,” she said. Eppard, who also holds a kinesiology degree from the University of Maryland College Park, will be working closely with CrossFit. “I’ll be offering the CrossFitters my expertise, as well as the surrounding community,” she said. “I’m more of a sports-minded person, but I’m schooled in all aspects of massage ranging from relaxation to sports. “There are so many benefits to massage,” Eppard continued. “Emotional, sp...
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Fireplace Supply Company warmed up for coming winter

Posted On: 9/11/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– With winter just around the corner and some experts predicting a repeat of last year’s frigid temperatures, the town’s newest business is poised for a breakout year. Fireplace Supply Company, Inc., located on 10452 Old Ocean City Boulevard near Save A Lot, offers dozens of gas, wood and pellet fireplaces providing ambience as well as in-home heating. Owners Glen and Carla Rantz opened the store on Labor Day. “We’ve been in business since 1999,” said Glen. “We kind of evolved – when we first opened we were just doing construction. From ’99 through 2006 of course it was great over here on the beach and we really didn’t need a store.” After opening a small office space in Pocomoke, the couple saw a need for an expanded retail space in Worcester County. “We’re looking for local people who have gas fireplaces and wood fireplaces that need updating,” Glen said. “It’s a harsh enviro...
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Burley Oak Brewing Co. to launch Kickstarter project

Posted On: 9/4/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– Burley Oak Brewing Company, a business founded on innovation and risk, is attempting to launch the county’s first successful Kickstarter project in more than two years. Burley Oak will use the popular crowd-sourced funding tool to launch their canning operation on Sept. 9. Owner Bryan Brushmiller said the company came up with the idea while working with the Small Business Development Center at Salisbury University. “They told us some other businesses they had worked with had done it with good results,” Brushmiller said. “We worked hard and saved our money for a new brew house, and then we realized we had to get the beer out and people wanted to get cans at their local stores. We thought it was a great opportunity to put Burley Oak in a can and put ‘made in Berlin, Maryland’ on it and kind of showcase Berlin in another way.” Since Kickstarter launched in 2009 only one other Berlin-based project and three Ocean City projects ...
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Several new stores to open for business in Berlin this fall

Posted On: 8/28/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– After a summer of surging business, several new shops will open their doors this fall. Inca Ruins on Pitts Street, Fireplace Supply on Old Ocean City Boulevard, Una Bella Salute on Broad Street and an as-yet unnamed coffee shop are joining the thriving Berlin marketplace. Handmade items, mostly imported from Peru, make up the bulk of the merchandise at Inca Ruins. “I’ve been doing it for nine years online and in flea markets and things like that,” said owner Kenneth Briggs. “Our main store is going to be in Rehoboth next year, but we saw this space (in Berlin) and said, ‘why not?’ There’s a lot of growth in this area right now.” An Ocean Pines resident, Briggs said he frequents Berlin often. “We’re always down here,” he said. “We thought this would be an unusual shop for the area because it’s not very antiquey. The bulk of it is Fair Trade, so it helps other people, and our prices are re...
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Shop owners report profits in sixth month after ‘cool’ contest

Posted On: 8/28/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– Six months after being named “America’s Coolest Small Town” in an online vote hosted by Budget Travel Magazine, Berlin’s business is predictably booming. Lititz, Pa., last year’s “coolest” town, saw a 30 percent uptick in sales. Berlin shopkeepers say the same thing is happening here in 2014. “It’s been a very busy summer,” said Terri Sexton, owner of Treasure Chest on 20 North Main Street. “What I have found is that a lot of people that come over that are tourists don’t necessarily know about the designation until they get here, but I’m seeing a lot of people that live within a day trip or a two-hour drive coming to town because they haven’t been here in so long. They’re discovering what we have here in Berlin and it’s been packed all summer long. “We’re a destination now,” Sexton continued. “You can come and spend the day and shop and eat, and I ...
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Sprout Creatives offers web advice, graphics, branding

Posted On: 8/14/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– Clean, simple cross-platform websites are the mission statement of Sprout Creatives, one of the latest businesses to take advantage of the resurgent downtown community. Founded in 2007, the company moved to its new location on 29 Broad Street in July. CEO Paul Starkey brought his design background as Art Director at Ocean City Today to the business, offering web development, internet marketing, graphic design and branding, and commercial printing. “This is just something I always did,” he said. “I saw a niche – a possibility – and just moved on it.” Sprout spends roughly 85 percent of its time on web development, specializing in Adobe Business Catalyst. Business Catalyst uses active data centers by Amazon Web Services and includes third-party integration with services including Google Contacts, QuickBooks and eBay. “It’s an all-in-one platform,” said Starkey. “We provide ongoing maintenance for our clients...
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Visitor spending bolsters island’s labor force

Posted On: 8/14/14
Written By:

BERLIN–A new National Park Service report shows that 2,056,827 visitors to Assateague Island National Seashore in 2013 spent $84,350,400 in communities near the park. That spending supported 1,052 jobs in the local area. “Assateague Island National Seashore is proud to welcome visitors from across the country and around the world,” said Superintendent Debbie Darden. “We are delighted to share the story of this place and the experiences it provides and to use the park as a way to introduce our visitors to this part of the country and all that it offers. National park tourism is a significant driver in the national economy–returning $10 for every $1 invested in the National Park Service–and it’s a big factor in our local economy as well. We appreciate the partnership and support of our neighbors and are glad to be able to give back by helping to sustain local communities.” The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by U.S. ...
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BUSINESS BRIEFS

Posted On: 8/14/14
Written By:

RECOGNITION Atlantic General Hospital has announced the Nurse of the Year and Clinical Associate of the Year. These awards were presented during National Nurses Week based upon votes submitted by the nursing staff. Nurse of the Year: Melissa Welch, RN, is a charge nurse on the Med Surg unit and is the clinical coordinator for the Stroke Center. She has been instrumental in the Atlantic General Hospital Stroke Center obtaining the highest recognition from the American Stroke Association. This was her fourth nomination for the award. Clinical Associate of the Year: Debbie Patterson is the Unit Secretary for Med Surg and has worked at Atlantic General Hospital for more than four years. She is committed to customer service, patient safety and acts as a mentor to new associates. She is described by her co-workers as someone who “always goes above and beyond.” During National Nurses week, which encompasses Florence Nightingale’s birthday, Atlantic General Hospital re...
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Blacksmith restaurant uses products from local farms

Posted On: 8/7/14
Written By: Josh Davis, Staff Writer

BERLIN– Berlin’s newest restaurant continues to challenge its clientele with a creative and constantly evolving menu. Blacksmith, located on 104 Pitts Street, opened in March. Owner Justine Zegna, boasting more than 20 years of experience as a professional chef, and Brooks Sullivan run the kitchen with plenty of help from their supporting cast. “We’ve got a lot of people back there and all of us have cooked for a long time,” said Zegna. “Brooks and I are basically the ones making the menus, making the dishes and dealing with the vendors. We deal with so many vendors and so many farmers that it’s sort of a part-time job in of itself – getting new things and then figuring out what we’re going to do with them.” The restaurant uses Berlin Organics and other local farms, including aquaculture oysters and clams, to source the best-possible ingredients. Blacksmith only uses bay-grown oysters, something Zegna believes contributes...
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