2017 "Build a Better Mousetrap" Awards presented to 18 Cape & Islands Small Business Owners selected by their respective Chambers of Commerce
SCORE's "Build a Better Mousetrap" Award honors companies that survive the critical first five years and appear to be headed for long-term success. All Chambers of Commerce on the Cape & Islands are invited to participate by selecting one of their member companies for recognition. In 2017 SCORE's "Build a Better Mousetrap" Awards go to 18 deserving companies. The winners, all listed below, received their awards at SCORE's annual awards breakfast, May 18th at the Old Yarmouth Inn.
Scroll down to read about winners - listed alphabetically by Chamber of Commerce
Pictures show each winner receiving plaques and "better mousetrap" awards from Marc Goldberg, SCORE Chairman. Several winners also received honorary certificates from their state legislators.
Brewster Chamber of Commerce honors:
Kyle Parker and Danna Perry - Guapo’s Tortilla Shack
Kyle Parker and Danna Perry opened Guapo’s Tortilla Shack in 2005, leasing the small building next to The Brewster Store on Route 6A in Brewster. They quickly discovered that the building was too small for what they wanted to accomplish; in addition, parking at the location was a problem, and staying open year-round was a strain on cash flow.
So they started looking for a better place, finding it in what had been the Brewster Express on Underpass Road adjacent to the bike trail. Two years after opening on Route 6A they moved in to the new Guapo’s and became seasonal. Kyle said, “You plan and then you do it over. Change is constant and performance is measured in sales!”
In November 2012, Guapo’s opened a second location, this time year-round in Orleans where they struggled at first. Kyle feels strongly that if you “don’t do the sales it’s an indication that people don’t like you, and if they don’t like you, then you have to go.” So, they updated their plan again by asking themselves, “What’s the bigger reason for doing this (business)?” Kyle and Danna both believe that giving back to the community and helping those less fortunate is important. That’s when they started holding fundraisers at the restaurant to support local non-profit organizations that work with children. This proved to be a good formula for improving the business. Some of the organizations that Guapo’s has been able to support include Latham Centers, Inc., Community Connections, CapeAbilities and Cape Cod Children’s Place.
Today, Guapo’s has a total of 60 employees in the summer season: 40 in Orleans and 20 in Brewster. Brewster remains seasonal and Orleans continues to be open year-round. Kyle said “This has been the most amazing journey of my life! Doing good things, helping some people, nothing can stop us!”
Cape Cod is fortunate to have entrepreneurs like Kyle and Danna who aren’t afraid of risk and continue to update their business to meet the needs of the community.
Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce honors:
Harley F. Silva - Cape Cod Marble & Granite
Having survived the critical five-year mark, locally owned and operated Cape Cod Marble and Granite is the largest stone fabricator on Cape Cod, offering a highly trained crew to work with customers through the entire process, from selecting the right stone to installation and ongoing maintenance. The company is thriving both on Cape Cod & the Islands, as they approach every project with the same level of attention to detail, whether it be a fireplace surround to an entire kitchen countertop. The company utilizes the latest technology to measure and precisely cut stone, ensuring projects turn out perfectly.
Not only does Cape Cod Marble and Granite provide great products for Cape Codders, but they also engage civically within their community. Their investments into the community have assisted organization-wide economic growth, while also positively impacting Cape Cod organizations. They are members of the CCYP Mentors Program and Giving Circle, participants in the Hyannis Rotary through the Home & Garden Show, members of the Home Builders & Remodeling Association of Cape Cod, as well as the Massachusetts Masons - Fraternal Lodge A.F.& A.M. Additionally, they support the Barnstable Police - Patrolmen's Union, the Massachusetts Environmental, and Nantucket High School fundraisers.
Cape Cod Canal Region Chamber of Commerce honors:
Nichole Cross - The Body Mechanist
45 Main Street Suite C1-B, Wareham, MA 02571
Nichole Cross owns and operates The Body Mechanist in Buzzards Bay, providing performance enhancing massage and body detailing since 2012. Nichole graduated in 2003 from the massage degree program at Baker College in Clinton Township, Michigan. Once out of school, Nichole trained with a Bonnie Prudden Myotherapist in Berkley, where she gained her foundation in, and passion for, trigger point work. In 2005 she took a teaching position at her alma mater and credits this extremely rewarding experience with giving her an extensive knowledge of massage and the human body.
Nichole returned to Massachusetts and took a job as lead therapist at Bella Boutique in Newton, where she discovered a second love, aesthetics. In 2008 Nichole earned her aesthetics license, expanding her growing list of services to include facials and waxing. Nichole opened The Body Mechanist in 2012 and has continued to grow. In 2014 Nichole’s sister, Lisa-jo Miller, graduated from Aesthetics school and joined the practice. In 2016 her mother, Roxanne Cunningham, graduated from massage school and came on board. Nichole also employs Sue Hogan, a massage therapist of 18 years. Nichole continually stays active in her field by volunteering for the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Massage Therapy Association for more than 10 years.
Nichole says: “Massage therapy is one of the greatest loves of my life, and it’s a gift to be doing what I love every day. I strive to advance my profession while helping my clients get the best care for their bodies. It’s even reflected in the name of my business: bod·y: (n) Your physical structure; the human machine that you drive around every day of your life. mech·a·nist: (n) A person skilled in the repair and maintenance of machines. “I can’t stress enough the importance of caring for your human machine. This is the only one we get and spare or after-market parts are never as good as the original. That’s why The Body Mechanist offers performance enhancing massage and body detailing. We think it’s important to look and feel your best. So from pain management massage to wrinkle reducing facials, our studio caters to our clients’ specific needs.”
Chatham Chamber of Commerce honors:
Stephen W. Williams - Cape Cod Daily Deal, LLC
Cape Cod Daily Deal was born in January of 2011 as a sister company of Click Cape Cod, LLC. Based in Chatham since its founding in 1998, Click Cape Cod continues to provide website design, development and hosting for businesses of all sizes. In addition, Click Cape Cod offers Internet marketing, consulting, computer sales, and an array of other computer and Internet related IT services.
Based on industry-wide trends in marketing, Cape Cod Daily Deal was conceived, created, and developed in-house from the ground up to provide Cape Cod businesses with a LOCAL 21st century Internet marketing option. Operating on a revenue-share compensation model similar to that of national brands like Groupon and LivingSocial, Cape Cod Daily Deal gives small businesses access to a vast, relevant, and targeted audience. Deals and merchants are tirelessly promoted via email and social media as well as through traditional channels such as print and radio, made possible by Cape Cod Daily Deal’s exclusive LOCAL partnerships.
Owner Stephen Williams has been dedicated to promoting local businesses online for more than 20 years. For him, “building a better mousetrap” comes as the opportunity to create a local grass roots business, Cape Cod Daily Deal. He has been excited about creating the Cape Cod Daily Deal website, database, application code, social media channels, branding… and all that goes with it. He has watched it grow to be a well-known and widely supported local marketing channel and a place where locals can save money and at the same time keep the economy strong and enjoy new experiences. Since launching on August1, 2011, Brett Tendler of Centerville has been working closely with merchants to assemble deals that are appealing to the public and promise to drive business for merchants. Brett and Stephen have committed to make customer service and satisfaction the pillar of the business, recognizing that there should be no customer OR merchant dissatisfied. The team at Cape Cod Daily Deal is honored to have received the SCORE award and recognition, and will look forward to providing more great deals and first rate customer service for years to come.
Dennis Chamber of Commerce honors:
Carl Monroe - Monroe Motors, Inc. Auto Repair
Carl Monroe started pumping gas at the old Mobil station on the corner of Old Bass River Road and Route 6A in Dennis at the age of 17. He didn’t go to trade school, but learned automotive repair via on the job training. In 2004, he was hired at Honda where he became a Honda Master Technician, and then earned ASE Master Technician certification, an industry standard. He also holds an L1 Specialist designation, and is the only automotive technician on Cape Cod with all 3 certifications. Carl opened Monroe Motors in 2013, in a single service bay in South Dennis, while also studying at 4C’s through scholarships for non-traditional age students and the CCYP Career Connect program. In 2015 he received his Associate’s Degree in business management. Today he has expanded his business into a second bay and has hired technicians of his own. He credits the training he received along the way, and his mentors for his “survival”. His motto is Quality Workmanship at a Fair Price.
Eastham Chamber of Commerce honors:
John Simonian - Beanstock Coffee Roasters
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1482, Wellfleet, MA 02667
John Simonian is President and head of day-to-day operations at Beanstock Coffee Roasters based in Eastham. Founded by friends in 1996, Beanstock has grown from a tiny retail location with a one pound roaster in the heart of Wellfleet to a specialty coffee macro-roaster (over 100,000 lbs./year) by building a prominent, wholesale and internet retailer business with a focus on customers that share their devotion to quality as well as a special affinity for the Cape and Islands. The future continues to look bright as the company is doubling its production space in May of 2017, has recently opened new accounts in Los Angeles and Providence and is planning on opening its first signature café before the end of the calendar year.
John grew up in Syracuse, NY but spent many childhood summers at the family house on Cape Cod. His varied career path includes freelance copywriting for Billboard Magazine, working for wine importer Frederick Wildman in Manhattan, several restaurant positions and a brief stint as an options trader on the Pacific Exchange. John has a B.S. from the University of Hartford.
Falmouth Chamber of Commerce honors:
Lou Ann Burgess and Richard Carl - iKitchens Etc. LLC
Rich Carl and Lou Ann Burgess chose Falmouth as the town where they wanted to build their life with their young family in 2002. A few years later, in 2006, they left their jobs in the corporate world and formed iKitchens Etc. LLC as a startup kitchen remodeling company. Working from their home, they could attend the basketball games and the martial arts belt promotions and one of them was able to be home when the kids came home from school. Life was good. Fast forward 10 years…
iKitchens Etc. LLC has grown into a full design/build remodeling business, servicing clients all around the Cape and Islands and the South Shore. Rich believes “Excellent client communication and a solid team of employees are two of the top reasons our company has enjoyed success. All remodeling projects present challenges, unforeseen situations, and changes in direction and our ability to work through these “problems” is really an opportunity to shine.” iKitchens’ success has been recognized by several awards over the past decade.
Last year iKitchens Etc. LLC bought a property in East Falmouth and built a design studio to better serve their clientele. Clients work with the iKitchens staff to plan and design their kitchen and bathroom projects, select cabinetry from a custom line or stock line, and enjoy relaxing in one location to see many selections of tile, flooring and hardware. Once decisions are made, the iKitchens team can create their dream space. The Design Studio at 321 East Falmouth Highway, fulfills Rich and Lou Ann’s dream of a full-service, one-stop shop, for home remodeling.
Harwich Chamber of Commerce honors:
Ron Leidner (Father) Gabe Leidner (Son) - Hot Stove Saloon
The Hot Stove Saloon opened its doors in May of 2005 just a few short weeks after the Boston Red Sox returned to Fenway Park as the World Series Champions. New England had fallen back in love with baseball and what better way to show it than with a new sports pub dating back to the historic times of the Hot Stove League. The Hot Stove League is a term used for off season baseball talk dating back to the early 1900’s before radio and television, people would gather around the stove and talk about their local team.
The Hot Stove Saloon immediately took off. It very quickly became a local hot spot serving delicious American Pub food, with locals trying everything from their native scallops, half pound lobster rolls, clam chowder, burgers, salads and more. Over the years the Hot Stove grew more and more successful. Owners Ron and Gabe Leidner, a father-son team decided to make a change. They stopped accepting credit cards and instead donated their savings to local organizations. Since then the Hot Stove Saloon has donated over $56,700 locally.
In 2016, Ron and Gabe saw an opportunity for expansion. Cranberry Valley Golf Course was seeking a new restaurant to run their club house. Ron and Gabe put in a bid and opened for the 2016 season. This new venue was different for Hot Stove - it was golf and breakfast, but that didn’t stop them. They adapted, re-decorated and opened up for the 2016 season. With a new menu for breakfast and lunch only, Hot Stove at Cranberry Valley quickly took off. Golfers began to arrive and several hundred sandwich and beer orders later Hot Stove at Cranberry Valley was up and running full steam ahead.
Greater Hyannis Chamber of Commerce honors:
Dylan Jordan - Rendezvous Café & Creperie
Rendezvous Café & Creperie was launched in April, 2012. Their concept combines specialty espresso and coffees, panini, and crepes They use fresh ingredients and everything is prepared to order and in an open style viewable from the customers in the café and on the street as they walk by. Rendezvous has a valuable connection with their neighbor, Puritan Clothing, where you can dine and shop all at once under the same roof. Since they have been open they strive to continue innovating and changing their products to keep their individuality fresh. Dylan Jordan is a Johnson & Wales Graduate with degrees in food service management and culinary arts. After working as a chef for many years he came back to Cape Cod where he was born in Hyannis, and so he has a strong commitment to being a positive influence on Main Street and the community.
Martha’s Vineyard Chamber of Commerce honors:
Mario Spindola - ohDeer MV
Mario Spindola, owner of ohDeer MV was also awarded Cape Cod & the Islands 2017 Small Business Owner of the Year. Read full details at SCORE's 2017 Small Business Owner of the Year
Mashpee Chamber of Commerce honors:
Dave and Catherine Ferraresi - Gustare Oils & Vinegars - Mashpee
4 North Street, Mashpee, MA 02649
Catherine and Dave Ferraresi established Gustare Oils & Vinegars with the dream of bringing the highest quality artisanal extra virgin olive oils, balsamic vinegars, and other regional gourmet food products to Cape Cod. The Italian word Gustare translates into English as “to taste, to enjoy, to savor” and those sensations are a guarantee for guests as they discover their favorite selections in the European-style tasting rooms.
Nantucket Island Chamber of Commerce honors:
Mark and Gwenn Snider - Nantucket Hotel & Resort
The Nantucket Hotel is a grand, historic, all-season island vacation destination, situated downtown that is ideal for families and couples. Originally built in 1891 and completely renovated in 2012 by Mark and Gwenn Snider, the Nantucket Hotel’s exterior is classic Nantucket and its interior is everything a guest would expect from a new hotel meeting the needs of today’s travelers - along with resort services.
The Nantucket Hotel has received numerous awards including:
Named #1 out of the “Top 25 Hotels in the United States” in TripAdvisor’s® 2017 Travelers’ Choice Awards!
Accolades from the New York Times as the most family friendly lodging option on Nantucket!
One of the “Top Hotels in New England” by Conde Nast Traveler in their 2016 Readers’ Choice Awards!
The Nantucket Hotel is an important contributor to the Nantucket community. It sponsors an annual New Year’s Eve masquerade ball, offers “stay-cation” overnight deals to Nantucket residents, and hosts multiple community events in its ballroom. In 2015, the Nantucket Chamber of Commerce presented its “Tourism Advocate of the Year” award to Mark Snider in recognition of the success of the hotel as well as his leadership to establish a free shuttle service between the ferry terminals and out-of-town parking lots.
Orleans Chamber of Commerce honors:
Karen Bohon, DVM, owner - Animal Hospital of Orleans
Renee Lincoln, CVT, practice manager
The Animal Hospital of Orleans is a friendly, caring, family-oriented veterinary hospital located in Orleans, MA. Dr. Karen Bohon has owned the Animal Hospital of Orleans since 1993. Their veterinarians and healthcare team take their mission of providing their clients and patients with the highest quality veterinary care and service, delivered with integrity, compassion and professionalism, very seriously.
Client education is a priority in their practice and they feel as though their clients should always be informed about their pet’s needs, treatment and care. They also continue to learn through continuing education to improve their services and to offer the most up-to-date and comprehensive care available.
As a locally owned and operated small business, the Animal Hospital of Orleans knows the importance of community involvement and giving back. They support local businesses, participate in community building events, and donate to local and national charities. Dr. Bohon and the healthcare team also established the Santana Fund with the mission of providing crucial veterinary services to deserving pets who are unable to receive the necessary treatment due to financial constraints.
Provincetown Chamber of Commerce honors:
Bart Weisman, Founder, Executive Producer & Performer - Provincetown Jazz Festival
Since 2005, the Provincetown Jazz Festival™ has been held in Provincetown, the Oldest Continuous Art Colony in the United States and Jazz musicians from the United States, Canada, South America, United Kingdom, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand have appeared at concerts in Provincetown and Cotuit on Cape Cod. The festival is a 501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Non-Profit Organization donating a portion of the proceeds to worthy causes including the Jazz in Schools Program on Cape Cod which presents Jazz to schools from Provincetown to Falmouth.
Sandwich Chamber of Commerce honors:
Denise Dever and Frank Allosso co owners - Home Instead Senior Care, Inc.
Denise Dever and her partner, Frank Allosso, opened their Home Instead Senior Care office in Sandwich in March 1998. They both were in the process of leaving their corporate positions and wanted to live and work on Cape Cod.
Working with seniors was a natural for them as they helped to take care of various family members over the years and realized that there were so many seniors that needed help to remain in their homes. Home Instead has been providing their services to hundreds of Cape Cod seniors over the years to help them to live independently and with dignity. And just as important, they have employed hundreds of wonderful Care Givers who love working with seniors.
Truro Chamber of Commerce honors:
Sandra Silver, President - Long Point Electric, Inc.
In 1983, Gary and Sandy Silva decided to start their own electrical business. With a second hand van and a small business loan from Seamen’s Bank they began their journey to success. Gary sadly passed away in 2002; Sandy became President and elected Jim Meads to be Vice President. To this day they use Gary’s values to guide Long Point Electric, Inc. in the work they do and try to provide the best possible customer service. We are dedicated to providing all of our customers with the highest levels of electrical service and quality to their home or business no matter what size the job is and providing our customers personal service by having a person in our office to answer their calls and questions.
Wellfleet Chamber of Commerce honors:
Corey Brundage - Brundage Site Work
With few dollars in his pocket after being laid off, Corey Brundage founded his construction company Brundage Site Work in the spring of 2010. At first tackling any job he could handle with a small pickup truck, rake and lawn mower, he began to establish his name with the cautious mindset, “you must crawl before you can run.” He created a trustworthy reputation amongst the Outer Cape community with a strong work ethic and quality workmanship, and so gradually built his company by acquiring more efficient vehicles and equipment, which allowed him to take on bigger projects and expand the business to the next level.
Today, Brundage Site Work continues to walk, not so much crawl. The company employs four full-time crew members and an office manager, with the team expanding to six members in the spring and summer months. Reputed as being the company that can handle the responsibilities of any sized project, they are busy year-round thanks to the diversity of their many scopes of work, such as septic system installation, design-build landscape projects, concrete flatwork, decorative epoxy overlays, patios of all sizes and types, stone and shell driveways, annual spring and fall cleanups, weekly serviced landscape accounts, tree removal, and general excavation. Brundage Site Work is a certified town water installer in Orleans, Eastham and Wellfleet.
Well on his way to “running”, Corey Brundage has successfully grown his business over the years into a local household name while still not forgetting about the customers and community who helped him “crawl” years before.
Yarmouth Chamber of Commerce honors:
Cathy and Reuven Lahav - Cathy’s Place Resort Wear & Accessories
Cathy’s Place has been providing women with boutique resort wear for over twenty-five years. The business is owned and operated by Cathy and her husband, Reuven Lahav whose success began in the early 1990’s with the opening of a small store in Mashpee. Their business grew over the span of the following years with storefronts opening in Cape Cod, Rhode Island, and South Florida. After years of successful business in Cape Cod, Cathy and Reuven decided to open a permanent location in South Yarmouth with the ultimate vision of downsizing into one storefront that could be managed by the owners themselves. Cathy prides herself on providing customers with a one-on-one shopping experience that is aimed at serving women’s fashion needs in an interpersonal, energetic, and fun-filled manner. Women from all over New England consider Cathy’s Place a local gem and favorite for all of their fashion needs. What makes the store so special is its capacity to provide customer service to women across generations; whether it be a granddaughter, mother or grandmother. Cathy has every customer taken care of and leaving the store with joy.