“Introducing our Fabulous Five Win This Space Finalists”
Have you always wanted to be your own boss, to manage your own business? The Municipality of Huron East embarked on an initiative in the spring of 2016 that helped do just that! As part of a revitalization project within the former RCAF/Canadian Forces Base, now the Village of Vanastra, the Municipality invited budding entrepreneurs to take part in a competition that is sure to kick-start their enterprise.
Now, after months of training and hard work by the contestants, Huron East is pleased to announce the five finalists (see below), who will take part in the Grand Finale on Saturday, August 27th at the Seaforth Golf Course vying for a prize valued at thousands of dollars. Come meet these five fabulous entrepreneurs and cheer them on. The event is open to the public. Doors open at 6:30 pm. Refreshments served.
Contestant: Gerrie Huenemoerder
Business: “Avelina Jewelry”
Avelina is an ancient Germanic name whose meanings include strength, life, and desirability. And Avelina Jewelry embraces all of these, as does its designer.
Award winning jeweller Gerrie Huenemoerder is first and foremost an artist. Her beautiful creations are formed from silver, gold, and platinum, many of which involve vitreous enamelling—an age-old process of fusing glass to metals.
But most of all, Avelina Jewelry is unique. Whether it be in a pendant, a bracelet, earrings, or a necklace, Gerrie’s distinctive style is evident. And many of her pieces have a touch of whimsy about them. If you’re looking for a one-of-a-kind enviable and memorable present, Gerrie is able to personalize that gift in exceptional ways. And perhaps it will be a gift from you for you!
Contestant: Debbie Nassar
Business: “Imagine Creative Centre”
Debbie Nassar was born an artist. As a young girl who loved the arts but from a family with limited resources, she recognized that there was a definite need to facilitate the nurturing and development of everyone’s creative side. This has stayed with Debbie throughout her life as she explored fine art, learned much, and enhanced her innate gift—speaking through paint and canvas.
Although life took her down a path that did not allow much time for innovative painting, Debbie found a way to cultivate her imaginative side by hosting an adult art club in her home—budding artists bring their supplies and current project and get together with other like-minded individuals.
The Imagine Creative Centre will be Debbie’s next step—one that will welcome children seven to eighteen years of age into the world of art. And for those who need help with the modest fee for this introduction to imagination, sponsors will be arranged. In age appropriate groups, kids will get to experiment with a variety of materials and methods, and have fun. Their sessions will be held once a week for two hours over a twelve week period. Adult art classes will be organized as well, led by Debbie and with experts in various media to allow exploration of the many ways to express one’s creativity.
As the late, great singer/songwriter Harry Chapin once wrote about a young child, “There are so many colours in the rainbow, so many colours in the morning sun, so many colours in the flower, and I see everyone!” Let the art and the artists begin!
Contestant: Jackie DeWit
Business: “No Nonsense Natural Products”
There are those among us who are pioneers, ahead-of-the-curve people—they explore uncharted waters. A few years ago, Jackie DeWit began to think outside the box when it became obvious that ‘the box’ did not offer nor contain what she needed.
Given her children’s health issues, Jackie’s family switched to organic foods, but regardless of their diet change, they eventually realized that there were many products in their home that were far from non-toxic. And so began her quest to develop completely natural commodities for all their needs—and to be able to afford them! Hence, No Nonsense Natural Products was launched.
Extensive research, experimentation, and modification have led to 25 new products that neutralize the toxic soup often existing within a home No Nonsense cleaning supplies, cosmetic necessities and personal care items include glass and floor cleaner, dishwashing and laundry soap, bug spray, sun screen, toothpaste, body wash, shampoo, and deodorant, to name a few. And none of these cost more than $20—in fact, a three month supply of laundry detergent is priced at just $20. In addition, Jackie utilizes minimal packaging and re-usable containers for her leading-edge products.
If she needed confirmation that there is a market for her ideas, it came in the response to a simple message on Jackie’s personal Facebook page, stating that No Nonsense Natural Products would be part of Vanastra’s Win This Space contest. This announcement resulted in 130 orders!
Through Jackie and her new enterprise, families and individuals are able to take charge of their environment, make healthful changes, and do it all with a ‘green’ slant. It’s a win-win-win! People are getting on board with this in a big way, and Jackie has the Good Ship No Nonsense going full steam ahead.
Contestant: Marcie Riegling
Business: “Marcie Media”
Marcie Riegling is an idea person—and sometimes her brainwaves stem from other ideas—an extrapolation, an offshoot of an initiative already underway. Concepts are often organic.
A couple of years ago, Marcie was asked to create a calendar featuring men who donated their time and talent to helping the Huron County Women’s Shelter. With a background in graphic design, she readily took on the project. And it was during its process that the seeds were sown with her to develop a similar calendar profiling women in the community who had made a difference.
The “Inspiring Women of Huron County Pin-up Calendar” for 2017 will come off the presses in late August. It highlights women who, much like their male counterparts, have contributed, have cared and who stand out!
As a result of the support and success of previous calendar projects, Marcie Media has been commissioned to create similar calendars for other charities. Win This Space offers the opportunity of a dedicated operations office and studio that will help to bring more of Marcie’s ideas to fruition.
Contestant: Kymm Moore
Business: “Khaos Artisan Bakery”
The artistic and creative mecca of Huron County and area is about to welcome yet another inspired entrepreneur. It is said that from a young age, we are drawn to professions and areas of expertise that just feel right, that are where we belong. And for Kymm Moore, that’s always been in the kitchen!
As a Red Seal Certified Baker, Patissier and Chef, Kymm has been concocting delicious dishes for appreciative patrons for years—all the while, yearning to have her own business, her own spot from which to operate. The education and mentoring she’s received through Win This Space are a huge step toward realizing her dream.
This talented chef focusses on quality ingredients and optimal flavour, utilizing local and seasonal products. The bakery-bistro Kymm is planning will offer fresh baked artisanal breads, European style cakes and pastries (both sweet and savoury) and eventually, light lunches—all of which will tempt the palate, treat the taste buds and definitely satisfy customers’ appetite for excellent food.
Her broad experience in the industry will allow Kymm and Khaos to provide catering, as well as to extend Pastry Chef services to local restaurants wanting to include additional desserts on their menus—desserts that are original and delectable.
Jan Hawley, Economic Development Officer, Municipality of Huron East, Seaforth, Ontario
Written for the Municipality of Huron East by Carolyn Parks Mintz, Author & Freelance Writer