Trio of ventures opens on South Main

Photo by Bill Livick. Charlie’s on Main opened last Thursday on South Main Street in the former Mason’s on Main location.

A new restaurant opened Thursday, Oct. 22 in the former Mason’s on Main storefront on South Main Street. 

Charlie’s on Main is the latest eatery launched by restaurateur David Heide, who also opened a “speakeasy” – Charlie’s Underground – in the basement level of the same building at 113 S. Main St.

Heide is the owner and head chef of Liliana’s Restaurant in Fitchburg, which he has run for eight years.  

Along with the restaurant and bar combo and speakeasy, his new venture includes The Main Event, a catering and special events venue with seating for 144 on the ground floor and 300 upstairs. The space includes a bridal suite, a groom’s room and a 40-seat spare room.


Chamber to host Women’s Business Expo Oct. 27

The Oregon Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its fall Women’s Business Expo from 6-8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 27, at the Firefly Coffeehouse.

The free event will give the public an opportunity to enjoy an evening with local business owners. 

There will be sandwiches and beverages available for purchase.

Around 25 businesses will be represented, featuring special offers, door prizes and giveaways.

Chamber executive director Judy Knutson said with only 59 days until Christmas from the date of the event, there will be many holiday gift opportunities. 

Attendees do not need to register or RSVP. For information, call 835-3697 or email

For businesses that want to participate, the fee is $35 for chamber members or $55 for non-chamber members. Register by Oct. 16 while space remains by visiting


Focus on framing: Full-service frame shop comes to Oregon

Photo by Mark Ignatowski. Natural Spaces Framing and Gallery is now open on Netherwood Road. Owner Dave Miess offers full-service framing, as well as artwork from his nature photography business.

Tucked into a small office suite on Netherwood Road is Oregon’s only full-service frame shop. 

Natural Spaces Framing & Gallery opened in September and business has been picking up for owner Dave Miess.

Miess – a nature photographer – has lived in Oregon for nearly 20 years. The new gallery at 165 W. Netherwood Road gives him space to display his work and a local place for people to pick out frames, mats and get photo restoration work done. 

“We have no frame shops – we’ve had them in the past,” Miess said. “It’s the right amount of space for me.”


‘Sports karate’: Young, experienced instructor offers exercise, self-defense

Photo by Samantha Christian. Luke Palmer, pictured here, is the owner/operator of Infinity Martial Arts in Oregon, located at 787 N. Main St.

A new martial arts studio that opened early last month brings a black-belt instructor with international experience to Oregon.

Luke Palmer opened Infinity Martial Arts on Sept. 3 in a 5,500-square-foot space next to Bill’s Food Center. The 27-year-old has been studying martial arts since he was 10 and teaches what he calls “sports karate” to a small but growing number of students here.

Palmer, who grew up in Verona and Fitchburg, comes from a family of black belts, including his parents and three brothers.

“We all started karate together and have been training ever since,” he said.

Palmer comes to Oregon with 12 years of experience as a martial arts instructor. For the past seven years, he was the chief instructor at an Infinity school in Middleton, and before that, he took an 18-month mission trip around the world that included karate.


Country View Veterinary Service gets new display, award

Photos by Mark Ignatowski. A new sign designates Country View Veterinary Service’s location on Hwy. CC and Fish Hatchery Road. The sign was in the works for almost a year.

It took almost a year, but Country View Veterinary Service has a new sign in front of its building at the corner of Fish Hatchery Road and County Hwy. CC.

The 14-year-old clinic itself is set back from the road, so you might not even know it’s there. And it took a while to get all the approvals because the sign is located along a highway, explained one of Country View’s owners, Dr. Emily Leuthner. 

“It was the talk of the town because it took forever,” Leuthner said. “We’re really proud of it.”

The sign gives some name recognition to the building located at the busy intersection. 


Architect Kay merges restoration business, but his work will continue

Town of Oregon resident Arlan Kay says architects never retire, but they do sometimes merge their business.

That’s what Kay, 74, has done with Architect Network Inc., the firm he established in the mid-1970s specializing in historic building restoration. He has folded his business into one owned by the woman he once mentored, Kelly Thompson, and his offices on East Dayton Street in Madison are now home to KONTEXT Architects, LLC.

But, he said in a nod to Mark Twain, rumors of his retirement “are greatly exaggerated.”

“There’s always another problem to be solved,” he said in response to the Observer’s question about last week’s news release announcing his retirement.

Kay said he does plan to slow down. He has “obligations” at his home in the Town of Oregon, but will continue to work on projects of his choosing with Thompson and others.


New restaurant, Holstein, to open next week on Main St.

The vacant storefront at 101 S. Main St. that used to be DeBroux’s Diner will be the new home of Holstein Restaurant beginning next week.

Restaurateur Scott Zeitler appeared before the Village Board Monday, where his application for a license to sell alcohol was approved. He told the board the restaurant would be open Tuesday-Sunday serving lunch, dinner and brunch on Sundays. 

Zeitler recently closed his restaurant in Brooklyn to relocate to downtown Oregon.

In a telephone conversation with the Observer last week, Zeitler described Holstein as “fine-dining casual” and said he’d hired an executive chef “to work next to me.”


Brooklyn eatery moving into old DeBroux’s spot

Holstein Restaurant owner Scott Zeitler will move the business from its location in the Sunrise Shopping Plaza in Brooklyn to the historic building that formerly housed DeBroux’s Diner in downtown Oregon. Building owner Bonnie Thiel said she expects the move to happen in mid-May.

The ground floor of the building at 101 S. Main St. is vacant after DeBroux’s Diner closed suddenly two weeks ago, but it won’t be for long.

Property owners Jerry and Bonnie Thiel told the Observer last week that Holstein, a farm-to-table restaurant in Brooklyn, is moving into the space in May.

Holstein is owned and operated by Scott Zeitler, who opened the restaurant two-and-a-half years ago in the Sunrise Plaza on Brooklyn’s north side.

On Monday, Jerry Thiel said Zeitler had contacted him about moving into the vacant space.

“Scott contacted us because he knew that Greg (DeBroux) wanted out and was selling pieces of his equipment,” Thiel said.


Thysse named to In Business 40 under 40

Jason Thysse has overseen a lot of growth at Thysse Printing since he took over the company in 2008.

Then, it had just seven employees. That’s now up to 48, and Thysse has expanded the company’s Oregon headquarters since moving here in 2011.

"It's been an amazing few years,” he said.

In Business Magazine recently recognized that success by naming Thysse to its “40 under 40” list, which recognizes “outstanding professionals” in the Madison area each year.

“I feel honored,” Thysse told the Observer of being named to the list. “I feel it's more of a reflection not of myself but of the people around."

He routinely pointed to the employees at Thysse and credited them for making him “look good in a way.”


DeBroux’s Diner closes suddenly

Photos by Scott Girard. DeBroux’s Diner closed Sunday after more than 16 years in business. Bonnie Thiel, of Thiel Properties, said she’s not sure yet what will fill the vacant space on South Main Street.

After more than 16 years in business in downtown Oregon, DeBroux’s Diner closed Sunday.

Owner Greg DeBroux told the Observer on Saturday that he was being evicted by the building owners, Jerry and Bonnie Thiel, of Thiel Properties, after they raised his rent. DeBroux posted signs on the building over the weekend informing the public that the diner has gone out of business.

He had been behind in rent payments, and Bonnie Thiel told the Observer on Monday that she and her husband also had been concerned about the restaurant being cited for violations of Dane County’s public health code.

Public Health Madison and Dane County records show the business was inspected Jan. 15, 2015, and cited for eight violations. The restaurant was inspected again Jan. 21, and two of the original violations had not been corrected.


Comment Here