The Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 30th new member/grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony at Millin Automotive.
The Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 30th new member/grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony at Millin Automotive.

‘Tis the season’ for new business

Published 9:40pm Sunday, October 24, 2010

If there’s a shortage on ribbon around Niles, it could be due to the recent and frequent grand openings of new businesses being celebrated by the Niles Downtown Development Authority and Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce.

Both organizations have welcomed a handful of new business owners to the area in just the last two months.

“‘Tis the season,” said Lisa Croteau, executive director of the Niles Downtown Development Authority. “I think people are starting to — you can only hold off for so long on life decisions and if you want to start a business, guess what, ‘I’m going to start a business.’”

Croteau said these “crazy economic times” could be just what has inspired several small business owners to follow their dreams and go into business for themselves.

“One of the big things that being your own boss does is, it makes you dependent on yourself and that can be comforting when the world gets crazy,” Croteau said.

Main Street recently welcomed Colorful Stiches Screen Printing and Embroidery, Trailhead Mercantile and Third Street Pizzeria to its roster of downtown businesses.

Each are being headed up by business owners with experience, such as Trailhead Mercantile’s Brian Williams.

“His dad owns a similar business in Vandailia,” Croteau said. “So it’s something he’s grown up with — something that he knows.”

Behind the dough being tossed at Third Street Pizzeria is Rich Moore who more than 10 years ago, Croteau added, was the original owner of Pine Lake Pizza when it was located just off Barron Lake.

“He had a phenomenally successful business,” Croteau said.

Another factor in the budding of new businesses — restlessness.

Something, Croteau said, “often happens with business people and entrepreneurs in particular. You can only be bored for so long.”

For its part, the Four Flags Area Chamber of Commerce recently celebrated its 30th new member/grand opening with a ribbon cutting ceremony for Millin Automotive Repair.
Located at the corner of Wayne and Second Street, the business offers complete automotive repair services.

And the season doesn’t appear to be over just yet.

“We have interest,” Croteau said. “These won’t be the only businesses opening up. We have a really wonderful mix of businesses right now, a great set of restaurants, really fun specialty stores…” all in time for the holiday season.

“It’s a hugely important time of the year for every small retail business,” Croteau said.
The community is what fuels those businesses and helps them survive, she added.

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