Happening this week around the county …
Deep South Posh Boutique will hold a grand opening Saturday morning and promptly invite shoppers inside the North East boutique. That, according to owner Christina Aldridge, will be the realization of a dream.
“It has always been my dream to open up a boutique of my own,” Aldridge said Monday and she and her husband Rodney put the finishing touches on the store at 102 South Main St.
Deep South Posh, a name her daughter came up with, will be hard to miss Saturday with a balloon arch across the front. Inside shoppers will find clothes for kids from newborn to size 12, mommy-and-me outfits, Christening attire, and hand made health and beauty products such as cash bath bombs, wax melts, shower bombs, bath soaps and even a handmade, all natural laundry detergent.
“I started as a hand made business seven years ago on Etsy,” Aldridge said as she watched Joe Shephard from Shephard Designs hang her sign in front of the store. That’s why she wanted to make sure she focused on small business to supply Deep South Posh Boutique.
While most of the clothing so far is for girls, Aldridge has a shipment on the way with clothes for boys. For now, if you are shopping for a member of the ruffles, bows and glitter set you’re in luck.
Kids can color at the coloring station while parents shop.
“I also offer a breastfeeding lounge,” she said, pointing to a room with a plush couch and ottoman behind a shear curtain. “That way mamas can come in and shop, nurse their babies and put their feet up in comfort.”
During the grand opening Aldridge will have goodies, swag bags for adults and kids and a raffle.
Aldridge is still dreaming, by the way. Once Great Wolf Lodge opens in Perryville she plans to expand and be one of the shops included in the resort experience.
“I’ve already been making calls,” she said.
Two Brothers Automotive recently opened on Clayton Street in Perryville; so recently that owners Nick Harroll and Dick Engelberth have not had time to hang a new sign.
Not related by blood, the pair consider themselves brothers with a longstanding friendship.
“We grew up together,” Harroll said. “We started out fixing cars on a gravel driveway ... laying on our backs in the gravel.”
After working for others they decided to strike out on their own when the garage at 1424 Clayton Street became available. Their specialty is general automotive maintenance with a promise.
“We’re not here to get rich,” Harroll said. “We’re here to make some money and serve the community.”
“And to keep the customer safe on the road,” Engelberth added. “If we’re trying to sell you a part we’ll show you why it’s needed.”
That community service means Two Brothers Automotive will give back to the town in which they grew up, starting with the Perryville Outreach Program. Engelberth and Harroll were members at the beginning when it opened on Aiken Avenue.
“We’d like to do a car show,” Engelberth said. They plan to meet with Outreach staff later this month to flesh it out.
Two Brothers Automotive is open Monday through Friday 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Call 410-642-9070 to make an appointment, or simply arrive at the shop. A third option is to drop off the vehicle after hours and use the drop slip and drop box to let them know what service is needed and to safely leave the key.
“We’ll give you a call when it’s done,” Nick said.
The Cecil and Harford County Chambers of Commerce will hold a Virtual Chamber Mixer June 25 from 3 until 4:30 p.m. The cost to join in is $15 for current members and $25 for future members. This is a great way to connect across county lines and also take part in special break out rooms. To register or to find out about sponsorship go to cecilchamber.com and click on the events page.
Impact Martial Arts in Perryville has made it to the finals of the Howard Bank “Keep It Local” contest. Angel Celona and her husband George have run the studio for 12 years; the last five have been in the Perryville Station Shopping Center.
Were they to win the $10,000 prize Angel said there are three projects that money would fund.
“We want to spruce up the studio and the lobby area is ready for an upgrade,” she said of the place parents and siblings wait during classes.
The next area would be to hire a marketing company to help Impact Martial Arts.
“Marketing is super critical for any martial arts studio,” she said.
But it’s the third project that Celona calls “most near and dear to my heart.”
“I want to work with the Perryville Outreach Program. That is the most exciting piece of the pie,” she said. If they are the winner she would develop a program to bring as many as 40 OP members to the studio twice a week for classes. It’s something she has been trying to do, but never acquired the funding.
To vote for Impact Martial Arts, the only Cecil County business in the final five, go to howardbank.com before 11:59 p.m. June 22.
The winner will be surprised with that $10,000 check June 30.
Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh has filed charges against Cricket Wireless, LLC and AT&T, Inc. for violating the state’s consumer protection act.
In a statement Monday Frosh said the two companies failed to inform consumers that the cellphones being sold would no longer work when Cricket merged with AT&T and changed its cell network, which used a different technology. Frosh said both companies knew of the problem a year in advance and said nothing to customers. Even after the merger the sales of these phones continued, causing significant expense to consumers who then had to buy another new phone.
“This practice, we allege, was undertaken to maximize profit from the sale of expensive smartphones without regard for the harm it would cause consumers,” Frosh said.
A hearing will be held Sept. 9 on the charges. Consumers who may have been victims can contact the Consumer Protection Division toll free at 888-743-0023.
AMC Theatres plans to have almost all its US outlets open in time for Disney’s July 24 release of the live action version of “Mulan.” In fact theatres are expected to be ready a week earlier for Christopher Nolan’s “Tenet” starring Robert Pattinson, Michael Caine and Kenneth Branagh.
The closest AMC locations to Cecil County are in Churchville, Md. and West Chester and Media, Pa.
Cecil County Chamber of Commerce is sharing an article from Inc. Magazine that helps guide business owners in handling their customers during the re-open phase of COVID-19.
The article by Emily Canal entitled ”How To Handle Customers Who Won’t Follow Safety Rules” suggests businesses be aware and plan now how to handle customers who refuse to follow safety procedures in place for your business. Canal also suggests posting those rules on websites, social media and other outlets. However plan to redirect headstrong customers back to the online services you offered during the shut down if they refuse to wear a mask or practice social distancing in person.
Lastly, because employees cannot possibly be trained for every conceivable scenario, decide now to accept the fact you may lose some customers.
Business Beat is a weekly column on business happenings in and around Cecil County. If interested in having your business featured in this column, contact Jane Bellmyer at email@example.com or 443-245-5007.