Looking to the future

Photo by Scott Girard. Krause Donovan Estate Law Partners recently moved out of Dan Krause’s home to a new location at 116 Spring St.

It’s never too early – or too late – to start estate planning, and after having moved his office out of his home this spring, Dan Krause and partner Nelson Donovan are hoping to help Oregonians of all ages prepare for their futures.

Krause, an attorney since 1999, moved to Oregon from Shawano County in 2003, when his son was about to begin school.

“We thought we might enjoy Oregon, so we moved down here largely because of the schools,” he said.

An Army reservist with the Madison-based 214th Legal Operations Detachment, Krause was mobilized twice in the past decade to support the Army’s overseas operations. While the missions have allowed him to serve his country, they have wrecked havoc with his “day job.”

In 2005, he went to Fort Bragg, N.C. for a year, and during 2010-11, he was at Fort Riley, Kan. For 14 months. Both times, he had to close down his business, only to re-open it when he returned.


Some ‘fresh’ competition

Photos by Scott Girard. Papa Murphy’s employee Anna Schultz makes a pepperoni pizza Thursday, Sept. 4.

Mark Venditto thinks another pizza place is just what Oregon needs.

That’s why he spent years working to bring Papa Murphy’s to the old Capital Creamery building, and he’s excited for the chain to compete with already-established Pizza Pit, La Rocca’s and Maria’s Pizza.

He believes the product they sell can do that.

“It’s good to have competition,” he said. “It keeps everybody honest. … Everybody’s got their niche and we have a great product.”

He pointed to fresh ingredients as a big factor in that. The other obvious difference is the “Take ‘N’ Bake” idea, in which the ingredients are put together at the store, but customers cook the pizza themselves at home.

Venditto is not new to promoting Papa Murphy’s, either, as he worked in the company’s corporate office for nine years until one of the franchisees he consulted with called him with an idea.


Firefly expands bakery, gets new flooring

Photo submitted. Firefly Coffeehouse owner Erika Weidler said the expanded kitchen space has helped the shop increase its bakery offerings.

It had been four or five years since Firefly Coffeehouse last expanded its operation.

But owner Erika Weidler noticed the bakery operation needed a bit more room, and once they started on that, “it kind of snowballed into the whole entire area.”

Now, “Oregon’s Living Room” has a new floor throughout as well as more room in the kitchen as demand has increased.

“It’s really transformed the space,” Weidler said.

The shop was closed for two days in late August to complete the upgrades, but Weidler said the final product was well worth moving everything furniture item out and then back inside.

“With the changes that we made to our bakery area … our horizons are huge now,” she said. “I didn’t realize how much that small space was holding us back.”


A local place to chill

Photos by Scott Girard. Oregon Frozen Yogurt owners Tina Juneau and Randy Joswig are both still working their day jobs in the healthcare industry, but wanted to bring a local option for kids later at night.

Randy Joswig’s 17-year-old daughter was going to Madison with her friends one cold night in January 2013 when Joswig asked why she’d be driving there on the “icy” roads.

“She’s like, ‘dad, there’s nothing to do in this town in the evening,’” Joswig recalled. “She would show me tweets and messages … and I’m like, ‘what can we do to keep the kids in town? This is crazy.’”

One year-and-a-half later, he and his wife Tina Juneau answered that question with the opening of Oregon Frozen Yogurt, or “OFroYo.”

“There isn’t a lot of places that stay open late to provide a safe environment, some place that they can come, hang out that’s … teenage-friendly,” Joswig said. “That is by far our driving motivation to do this.”


Dollar General opens in Brooklyn

Photo by Scott Girard. Dollar General opened in the Village of Brooklyn July 4. The store employs around 12 people, according to the Village of Brooklyn newsletter.

Village of Brooklyn residents have a new option for last-minute gifts, household accessories and other knick-knacks with a new Dollar General store.

The store opened its doors July 4 after purchasing the land at 303 Douglas Drive from Union Bank and Trust late last fall, Village President Nadine Walsten told the Observer.

Walsten said the village did not have to get involved in the process to recruit Dollar General to come to Brooklyn, instead finding the company was strongly interested thanks to the size and location of the community.

“They look at villages like Brooklyn that have a need for the kind of store that they have,” Walsten said. “The kind of research they do is to look for communities that would really benefit from having a store.”

And those benefits will be many, Walsten said, especially having the “convenience factor” of a store in the village.


Walker visits Oregon business

Photos by Scott Girard. Gov. Scott Walker and Mark Mortensen talk about MDF desktops the company coats.

Gov. Scott Walker stopped in Oregon Tuesday morning to tour the All-Color Powder Coating Inc. facility and talk with employees and managers. The stop was part of Walker’s campaign against Democratic challengers in the November election.

All-Color president Mark Mortensen said he was “very proud to have him select us to come visit.”


The student is the master

Photo by Scott De Laruelle. Dog trainer and Happy Buddha Dog Trainer owner Dan Antolec sits with his dogs Buddha and Gandhi.

Dan Antolec might be in charge around his two black Labrador retrievers, Buddha and Gandhi, but he’ll quickly tell you that he, not they, is the student.

“After all, the only true dog experts are dogs,” Antolec said.

Antolec, CPDT-KA (Certified Professional Dog Trainer – Knowledge Assessed), is the owner of Happy Buddha Dog Training, and not surprisingly, he takes a very Zen-like approach to his work. Raised on Madison’s east side, he and his wife have lived in rural Brooklyn for more than 30 years, enjoying the wide-open spaces and scenery for their variety of animals.

But it wasn’t always that way for Antolec, who grew up always wanting a dog, but with a  father who didn’t believe the city was the right place for one. That’s a bit of knowledge that was passed on to the son, who has taken the care and compassionate training of dogs to a whole new level.


Photography business gets ready for senior picture season

Photos by Scott Girard. Michelle Allen-Daubenspeck, left, has run her business in Oregon since 2010. Right, Allen’s sister Jaime Thayer serves as business manager for Allen as she has for the past six years.

For years, Michelle Allen-Daubenspeck managed her photography business out of her basement until she acquired a storefront in Fitchburg in 2007.

But after three years there, she found the space “impersonal” for a commercial business that is about working with people. She then discovered a building on Market Street in Oregon, where she lives, and Michelle Allen Photography has been there for the three years since.

“It’s going pretty good,” she said of business.

Allen-Daubenspeck does a range of photography, from business and newborn portraits to senior pictures and weddings.

“I really like to interact with people, and kids especially are my favorite,” she said. “You never know what you’re going to get.”

Most of her business currently, though, comes from senior pictures, of which she does up to 120 per year, most falling over the summer months.

She’s looking forward to that part picking back up soon.


Moonlight shining: Brooklyn multimedia design business finds success out of home office

Photo by Scott Girard. Moonlight Designs Studio Owner Brit Springer shows off her website, which she is in the process of redesigning. Springer runs her multimedia design business out of a basement office in her Brooklyn home, where she moved to in 2012 from Colorado.

Brit Springer went to college to become a painter.

But in today’s technology age, she’s putting her art instincts to a different use: multimedia design.

Her business, formerly One Ear Productions and called Moonlight Designs Studio since 2012, is run out of her Brooklyn basement in a home office she shares with her husband.

Springer said she realized designing websites was something that could open more doors for her than painting, plus she already had skills because much of her painting was done on a computer before paper anyway.

“If I’m already on the computer, I might as well jump in,” Springer said.

And when she got a job with a company helping build websites for home building companies in Colorado, she realized how much she enjoyed it, and even though she hadn’t been trained in graphic design, she quickly found success.


Zing-A-Ding enters 20th year in business

Photo submitted. Zing-A-Ding owner Matt Rolfsmeyer works to repair a dent in a car as part of the paint-free dent removal business. The company uses special equipment and techniques to remove dents without having to repaint parts of the car. Rolfsmeyer and his wife Patty have owned the Oregon-based company for 20 years.

Now that the snow and ice has mostly melted from your car, it’s a good time to look for dings from a runaway-shopping cart that might have hit your vehicle this winter.

That’s where Zing-A-Ding, Inc.- an instant paint-free dent repair company– could come in handy.

Zing-A-Ding is owned by Oregon couple Jane and Matt Rolfsmeyer, who have been serving Dane County’s dented cars for the past 20 years.

“Our specialty is removing small dings and dents from vehicles using the process of paintless dent removal (PDR) without using fillers or repainting,” Jane told the Observer in a news release.

The process takes about an hour and can be done at the customer’s home or business. They also have shop space in Middleton where customers can bring their vehicle for repair, but the bulk of their business is done as on-site work at local car dealerships.