Today was Anchorage’s Relay For Life with the American Cancer Society. A chance for people to get out and support other people in the community that are surviving in their challenges with cancer. This year the event was held at Begich Middle School, in East Anchorage. Sponsored by Providence Hospital, the local Fred Meyer stores, Home Depot, and other local businesses, this is the chance to get out, enjoy the day being with other people, and fundraising to help the American Cancer Society meet the needs of the community. The local Cancer Society is located at Providence Hospital. The Director of the Cancer Center at Providence, Betsy Baldwin, has been in the administration side of hospitals for more than 30 years. Her own personal experience surviving cancer here in Alaska, she confidently chose to stay in Anchorage to receive her care at Providence, instead of going to someplace like Seattle. Continuing on in her work, Betsy says that she is confident that Providence Hospital has provided good care to cancer patients, and her personal experience has helped her become more sensitive to the needs of Providence cancer patients.
This year’s Small Business Administration Veteran-Owned Business of the Year, Bill Dishon, President of Orion Construction Inc. spells it out for people thinking about starting and growing a business of their own. Orion is based in Wasilla, but many of their projects are in Anchorage.
Schedules allowed for Bill, and Sec./Treasurer, Jeff Whaley, to talk to AGN by phone. It’s a first.
Aside from the Small Business Administration logo, provided by the local SBA office, the images for this audio/video article came from the Orion Construction website, including the screenshot of their website.:
Anchorage Federal Building/ US Courthouse Replacement on (6) Penthouse Roofs-Removed and replaced the roofs on (6) penthouses at the Anchorage Federal Building/US Courthouse in Anchorage, Alaska.
Wasilla Pool Improvements-Renovate the existing Wasilla Pool facilities
Bartlett HS Cafeteria and Kitchen Renovation-
Cafeteria and kitchen renovations at Bartlett High School
UAA RAS WIEDNER-
The work consists of demolition of partition walls and new construction, storefront, electrical, mechanical and AV design
Reflections Lake Pedestrian Bridge-Project consisted of constructing a 95-foot pedestrian bridge over Reflections Lake.
Demolish existing components, equipment, structures, and finishes. Install new obstacles. Provide gravel pad at entry of new vault toilet. Demolish existing Vault Toilet and replace with new one.
Congratulations to Bill, and all of the other recipients of this year’s awards.
A path to diversifying Alaska’s economy by growing small businesses with local investors, is the effort of the inaugural Alaska Angel Conference 2019. Investors and investors-in-training, from around Alaska, met at the 49th State Brewery, in downtown Anchorage, to hear the pitches of 5 Alaskan startup companies, one of whom to receive over $100,000 to invest in their business. At this conference, new investors learn how to discern what is a good return on their investment. The startup companies have been going through a weeks long training and networking to better run and grow the business. The winner of the Audience Choice award for today’s event, alcohol infused cookies, Molly B’s BINGERZ., which are available at Brown Jug Liquor. The winner of the Angel Investors check is RAMPER Innovations, a company in Sitka, the invention of Tim Fulton, that produces a portable moving ramp for safe and efficient luggage loading into commercial airplane cargo bays.
Next year’s conference is slated for Juneau.
“It’s a great group of people, they care and want to see you succeed.” Carrie Jokiel sits comfortably on the couch in her office. She is this year’s recipient of the award for Women-Owned Business of the Year – ChemTrack, presented by the Small Business Administration. “And I think, that’s one of the nice things about Anchorage, and about our state, is that we can have impact pretty quickly.” ChemTrack has been providing environmental services since 1973. It has cleaned in Anchorage but mostly around the state. Carrie refers to it as “cleaning up dirt“. A lot of what ChemTrack does, is fufill contracts for the federal government. Cleaning up the spills that were made in Alaska during World War II. Jokiel is an alumni from University of Alaska Anchorage and hard-working, but attributes a lot of for success to having access to people and networks. She also shared a video of a process called contract mobilization, where banking institutions can partner with small businesses, to assist owners better in the financial decisions they make for their business.
Carrie Jokiel and the other Alaskans, will receive their award at a ceremony this Friday the 10th, at 10:30 am – 11:30 am at the Loussac Library. To be followed by the Alaska BizFair, noon – 5pm.
Congratulations to the 2019 Small Business Persons of the Year: Jon & Jan Tatham and Shelly Bramstedt, with PIP printing of Alaska LLC! These people are being honored, along with other small business owners, by the Small Business Administration this week, during the National Small Business Week. The owners of PIP Printing of Alaska have traveled to Washington DC, for the national honor, and will return in time for a ceremony here in Anchorage later this week. In Alaska, the SBA is also honoring:
Carrie Jokiel – ChemTrack Inc. Women-Owned Business;
William Dishon – Orion Construction Inc. (Wasilla)
Kevin Tennant – Glass Door of Fairbanks (Fairbanks) Veteran-Owned Business;
Brian K. Horner – Learn to Return, Micro Business;
Amiee Sommer – Tutka LLC (Wasilla), Rural Business;
Tom Tougas – Seward & Paul Robinson (Fairbanks) Small Business Champions; and
Theo Ransum – Evergreen Business Capital, District Director Award
A ceremony to honor these business persons is scheduled for Friday morning May 10, at 10:30 AM at the Loussac library auditorium. Immediately after, the SBA begins the Alaska BizFair from noon until 5 o’clock. Free and open to the public. For anyone who is thinking of, trying to start, or growing a small business, help is available. Beside the many booths and workshops with information and assistance from people with expertise, the honorees will be on hand to share what they learned to make their business grow and be enduring. Registration at http://2019smallbizawards.eventbrite.com is not required, but recommended. Evergreen Business Capital is sponsoring this event. To see the full details of Friday’s event, go to http://AlaskaBizFair.org.
One Anchorage partner with the SBA to help local entrepreneurs, is the University of Alaska Anchorage hosted, Small Business Development Center. There are advisors waiting to help, workshops with local experts on important business information. Fliers for Friday’s Alaska BizFair are available there. To learn more about them got to http://aksbdc.org.
The snow is melting, but look at all that trash laying around! People of Anchorage! please come out this week and help clean up the trash. Let’s work together to care for our home, Anchorage, Alaska. The Anchorage Chamber of Commerce has organized a citywide cleanup effort which will kick off Saturday, April 27, 2pm -6pm. There are going to be several locations around Anchorage, including The Lakefront Anchorage, a hotel at Lake Hood, in the Spenard area. Anchorage Waste will be there with supplies to collect trash, along with food, for those participating. Laurel Andrews at Anchorage Waste, pointed out that Picking up litter means reducing water poisoning.
The very first event of the kick off is the “Super Sweeper”, where students, parents, families, and others in the community come together at participating schools to pick up. Like, the Alaska Native Cultural Charter School at 550 Bragaw. Fred Meyer, has distributed bags to the community and has contributed $5000 worth of gift cards to be received for picking up trash. The Anchorage Chamber of Commerce has information regarding this week long event, including tomorrow’s kick off, on their website http://anchoragechamber.org. Detailed information about the locations and participants can be found on Facebook: Anchorage Chamber of Commerce. Post pictures of yourself having fun, with the hashtag, #anccitywidecleanup.
My mouth is salivating as I head over to Alaska Sweet & Savory’s grand opening at the Gathering AK Café. The Café is a part of Anchorage re:MADE’s project “Guest Chef”, to help local people with their dreams of becoming restaurant owners. Today is the sixth and final grand opening at the café. As revealed in a previous article of Anchorage Good News, the word is… the lasagna is “amazing”. Even a customer in the store today, talked about how popular the lasagna is. Unfortunately, I have some dietary restrictions, but that does not deter Shawn Dinkins owner of Alaska Sweet & Savory catering, she has gluten-free and even vegan options. The menu has its regular items, but she also adds a couple of different entrees, like meatloaf, to the menu each week.
Looking back over the last week, in all these different local restaurants, the most important thing to each one of these chefs: customer service. No matter what day I went in, if a customer had a particular need, the chef was there, eager to listen and to provide good food. To see The list of restaurants currently at the café and their menus go to Gathering AK Café on Facebook.
Through the large white flakes falling from the sky, you can see the sign. the red and yellow letters, along side old Seward Highway. Frank Canha is certainly learning a lot from experiences with the Guest Chef program available at Anchorage re:MADE. Another sign, over the door to the café, leads you into the dining room, where red and yellow balloons float above the tables. In the corner stands a table arranged with delicious dessert treats, and a keg of root beer, chilled and ready to go. Frank and coworker/co-owner Dinna Domdom, sport matching baseball cap and polo shirt, emblazoned with Frank’s Bat-B-Que logo. All of these elements, with their interconnected subtleties, is part of what it takes to have a business. Of course, the center being the food. And that’s what Frank and Dinna are focused on today. Frank’s barbecue does have an online website, at franksbarbque.com you can see the menu and photos of the food.
Every time a plate of Cuban sandwiches was brought out to a table, people happily shared it with those around them. Today’s grand opening of the restaurant, Cuban Bred, is all about sharing good food, and being with family and friends. A Cuban style sandwich and “hamburger” made with ham, chorizo and other delicious ingredients, served with banana chips. Handmade desserts are available and unique sodas brought from Cuba. Cuban Bred is one of the 6 local chefs that have joined a program with Anchorage re:MADE, a local recycling hub. Not only do they beautifully remake donated items with volunteer, expert care, but with their newest class, Guest Chef, people’s lives can be remade to follow their dreams. For more information about their offerings, go to www.anchorageREMADE.com. Come meet the Brown family at Cuban Bred, open every Wednesday from 11 to 5, at the Gathering AK Café, 13500 Old Seward Hwy., south of Huffman.
Not only are they gluten-free, but they have no wheat. The bread of Mochileros is made from corn, and topped with unique Guatemalan inspired recipes, with a little American twist, because the owners are Guatemalan Ana Pleitez and American Whit Parker. Mochileros, open Tuesdays 11am – 8pm, is Spanish for “backpackers” in honor of the adventures in backpacking to be enjoyed here in the Anchorage area. Also, I’m sure it’s not coincidental that you don’t need a fork to eat their food. This is number 2, of 6 local chefs, having grand openings at the Gathering AK Café, adjacent to the Anchorage re:MADE store on Old Seward Highway, south of Huffman. You can see photos and their menus on the Facebook: Gathering AK Café.