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Success stories

Carol Boeddiker Designs, Napa

“Sonoma artisan refocuses market to improve sales”

Carol Boeddiker is an Independent Representative for Silpada Designs Jewelry. Carol is sole owner and conducts a home based business selling her goods at targeted, niche market trade shows, home parties, and online.

Alley 6 Craft Distillery, Healdsburg

“Sustainable distillery enjoys successful start-up”

Alley 6 is a small batch whiskey distillery located in Healdsburg, CA. The company strives to make sure that every step in their distillation process is sustainably and responsibly managed, and all of the spirits are made using the best organic grain sourced as locally as possible. The entire distillation process is done in-house every step of the way to ensure the highest quality product.

Their first source of rye will be from family and friends in Montana, who are already raising the crop they need. In the future, they hope to purchase more locally sourced grains.

Ace It Bike Tours, Sonoma County

Ace It Bike Tours is a Sonoma based bike tour company offering multiple ways for a tourist to enjoy Sonoma County or San Francisco by bike. Three signature tours are offered: the Sonoma Bike’n Brew Tour, the San Francisco Bike Tour and the Sonoma Wine Country Bike Tour. Ace It also serves the independent traveler by renting everything needed for independent biking: bike plus helmet, handlebar bag, lock, gear rack with insulated bag, water bottle cage, customized bike map, spare tube and pump. Bike car racks are also available for rent. Ace It supports family bike trips by offering child-sized bikes as well and delivery of bikes to local hotels.

Alta HPS, Benicia

“Exercise specialist employs successful marketing plan”

Michael Weiss is the founder and president of Alta Health and Performance Solutions (Alta HPS).  Weiss is an exercise physiologist, fitness specialist, professional cycling coach, cross country ski instructor, and endurance athlete. Currently, he regularly speaks to corporate and academic communities on topics ranging from health and wellness to exercise science. His presentations focus primarily on the importance of physical activity for the prevention and management of chronic disease and as a means to promote functional capacity to enhance the quality of life. As a university lecturer, Weiss is frequently invited to present his expertise in environmental physiology focusing on the physiological responses and adaptations of athletes training in extreme environments. Additionally he offers personalized fitness coaching, serves as a corporate fitness consultant, and provides performance testing along with customized training programs to endurance athletes.

Amour Amour, San Mateo

“San Mateo wine bar enjoys successful opening”

Amour Amour is a brand new wine bar and tapas restaurant that has opened in the heart of downtown San Mateo. Owner, Simone Nguyen was previously an aesthetician, owning a massage studio in the same location that Amour Amour currently occupies. Simone has had a long history in the service industry and has a warm shining personality, which has helped her build up a client base that wants her to succeed in her new venture.

Simone shifted from massage to food because she wanted to bring her love of service and food to the people of San Mateo. She has a wonderful Mediterranean aesthetic which she’s used to decorate her restaurant. Her dream is to bring good food and good people together in a European environment.

Stone & Embers, Philo

“First time restaurateurs successfully launch eatery”

Stone and Embers is a new restaurant nestled in the Philo, CA boutique resort called The Madrones. Chef and Owner, Patrick Meany, specializes in local, seasonal, and wood-fired cooking that reflects the rustic-yet-refined setting in the heart of the Anderson Valley.  It is open Friday-Tuesday for both lunch and dinner, and has already garnered a great deal of praise for its delicious food and beautiful setting.

Slam Dunk Pizza, Ukiah

“Sports themed pizzeria scores loan”

Slam Dunk Pizza is a sports-themed pizza restaurant in Ukiah, California. Owners, Matt and Stephanie Dunken, both have a background in pizza business, but this is the first business they have owned themselves. Their restaurant offers a variety of toppings as well as “house specialty” pizzas, burgers, beer, and soft drinks. Slam Dunk Pizzas are available for pick up, delivery, or for onsite consumption, where patrons can also view sports on TV and enjoy arcade games. Slam Dunk Pizza also welcomes groups to hold events in either of its two party rooms.

Beautiful Earth, Fort Bragg

“Geology enthusiast makes dream store a reality”

Gary Mason read a book about starting a rock shop in 7th grade and has been thinking about it ever since. His dream came true on December 5th, 2013 when he opened his business, Beautiful Earth. Beautiful Earth is a small retail shop in Fort Bragg that offers minerals, fossils, meteorites, gems, stone beads, gem elixirs, and supplies. It is also a gallery for art of all media inspired by the Earth. In addition to being a retail shop, Mason uses Beautiful Earth as a classroom for a mineral and gem elixir course series. Having taught high school Earth Science and Mineralogy Lab at Chico State, Mason is able to share a wealth of knowledge about the specimens he offers.

Vignette, Sebastopol

Vignette Pizzeria is a scene in the life of Chef Mark Hopper.  His career in the kitchen spans some 30 years, during which time he has worked alongside some of the most esteemed chefs in some of the world’s most renowned kitchens.

With a family tree rooted in Italy, it was only natural that Chef Hopper would be drawn to the simplicity and elegance of authentic Neapolitan pizza. Inspired by his childhood memories of pizza nights, spending time in his grandparents’ garden and watching his grandfather make homemade pasta and wine, Hopper decided to open an eatery that would honor that heritage.
Mark believes that “nobody is picked to do this kind of business – you are born to do.”

Travels with Teri, Sausalito

“International travel company triples gross sales”

In 2011, Teri Goldstein launched her concierge tour company with a focus on customized specialty tours to India and other Asian countries. Teri’s target audience is the seasoned traveler, looking for an in-depth cultural travel experience with the means to pay for an individualized experience or customized small group tour with special granted requests. Fulfilling her mission of offering “Journeys for the Curious Traveler”, tours are offered throughout the world and satisfy the desire for photographic, historical, cultural, philanthropic, culinary, spiritual, and other adventures not offered by the mainstream tour companies.