Country View earns honor from state department

Country View Veterinary Clinic was named one of eight “Business Friends of Education” in Wisconsin by state superintendent Tony Evers this month.

The awards recognize businesses that help students graduate well prepared for college and career.

“The collaborative partnerships fostered between industry and education play a key role in preparing Wisconsin students for the future,” Evers said in a news release. “These supportive relationships make a difference in student’s lives and strengthen our communities for years to come.”

Amy Robinson of Country View Veterinary Clinic has lent her expertise as a veterinarian to improve the educational experiences of Oregon High School students and its career and technical education program. In just the past four years, Robinson has worked with 14 agriculture youth apprenticeship students, providing hands-on experience and skills to help them pursue their interests in veterinary or animal fields.


Peterson makes ’40 under 40’ list

Two-and-a-half months is a long time to keep a big secret.

That’s something Academy of Sound executive director and founder Erin Peterson learned between Dec. 21, when InBusiness Magazine emailed her to inform her she was on its 2014 “40 Under 40” list, and March 1, when she was technically allowed to share the big news.

“I was so excited,” Peterson, 32, said. “I wanted to tell my family and stuff, but I knew my family would be too proud to keep it to themselves.”

Instead, she told one close friend who she knew could keep a secret. Otherwise, it was between her and the magazine.

The list comprises 40 “rising young business stars” in the Madison area and celebrates that “youth – at least in their case” is not wasted on the young.”

The magazine wrote that Peterson “embodies community investment” through her involvement in the Oregon Chamber of Commerce, the Oregon Historic Preservation Commission and the Wisconsin Music Educators Association.


Fitchburg Farms opens greenhouse off Hwy. 14

Photos by Scott Girard. The new 20,000-square-foot greenhouse will include up to 5,000 hanging baskets with more plants on the ground. The company hopes to expand next year, and plans to have a corn maze behind the greenhouse this fall.

Floral and garden enthusiasts will have another option near Oregon beginning this month.

Fitchburg Farms, located just off the intersection of Hwys. 14 and MM, will open its 20,000-square-foot greenhouse and office April 18 just a few weeks ahead of Mother’s Day.

Fitchburg Farms general manager Josh Wall said in March the business will be “community-oriented,” including where they have gotten the construction supplies and plans for future fundraisers once the business is up and running.

Wall also said they hope to expand the business in the future, including a plan to double the business’ size by next year if all goes as planned in year one.

In the meantime, they’ll use some of their nearly 60 total acres of land for activities such as corn mazes and housing animals on the land.

Their current space allows for nearly 5,000 hanging baskets along with plenty of table space for more plants and flowers.


Perseverance pays: Headquarters going gangbusters after two-year struggle

Photos by Jeremy Jones. Jamie Bush used lots of local contractors to build his new restaurant and bar on Concord Drive, including Supreme Structures of Oregon, architect Dave Manganero, and Thysse Printing, as well as local carpenters and builders.

Businessman Jamie Bush can’t estimate the number of times he questioned whether it was worth all the time, effort and frustration.

But now that his new Headquarters Bar and Restaurant is finally open at the corner of Concord Drive and Wolfe Street on the village’s south side, Bush is glad he decided to build in Oregon instead of choosing a different community.

But it wasn’t easy.

He opened the new restaurant/bar/volleyball facility Feb. 18, two years after first approaching village officials with his building plans and a request for funding assistance.


Against all odds

Headquarters owner Jamie Bush didn't have an easy time opening the new sports bar in the Village of Oregon. From anonymous complaints to the DNR about his land being a wetland to less TIF money than he'd hoped for, it was a long process.

When Jamie Bush first approached Oregon officials two years ago about his idea for a restaurant/bar/volleyball complex, he hoped to get the village’s help with developing the property and an “expedited approval process.”

While he did end up getting some help, it came along with a nightmarish series of setbacks, some from the government, some from appraisers and others from Mother Nature.

The plan, as laid out in April 2012, was to build an 8,000-square-foot, two-story, $1.25 million building with both indoor and outdoor volleyball courts on the parcel at the intersection of Wolfe Street and Concord Drive. He initially estimated the business, now called Headquarters, would employ 65 people by its second year of operations, with a payroll of about $450,000.

At first, he hoped to get a 50 percent rebate on property taxes for seven years and a reimbursement of developer fees from the village’s relatively new tax-increment finance district, TIF 4.


Women’s business expo set for April 1

The Oregon Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its Women’s Business Expo April 1 at the Firefly Coffeehouse.

Chamber executive director Judy Knutson said the expo offers a chance for those who run businesses out of their homes to meet each other and let the public know who they are.

“We don’t know everybody who has a business inside their homes,” Knutson said. “That’s getting more and more popular.”

The event will be from 6:30-8:30 p.m., Tuesday, April 1, which is also the spring election.

“Go vote and then come over,” Knutson suggested.

Many businesses from the Oregon area will be at the event, including Pivotal Point Acupuncture, Hometown Pharmacy and U.S. Cellular.

Other businesses will sell their products at the expo, including Wildtree, Premier Design Jewelry and Thirty-one.


Maria’s Pizza still going strong

Photo by Bill Livick. John Indelicato has been making food by hand in his kitchen at Maria’s Pizza in downtown Oregon for more than 35 years.

Like Mark Twain, rumors of John Indelicato’s retirement have been greatly exaggerated.

Last year, Indelicato celebrated his 35th year in business running Maria’s Pizza on South Main Street in Oregon. He says he has no plans to retire – despite what seems to be a recurring rumor around town that he’s just about to close his restaurant.

“I’ll retire sooner or later, but not anytime soon,” he told the Observer last month. “Customers like that I’m here all day, every day.”

Indelicato opened his Oregon pizzeria in late 1978. He began the business with a partner who gave up after a few months. Since March ’79, Indelicato has run the restaurant with the help of his wife and three daughters.

Maria’s has been open six days a week since the very beginning, Indelicato said, adding that he’s worked 12 to 15 hours a day the entire time.

For years, he didn’t even stop to take a vacation. But in the last few years he’s managed to get some time off.


A long time coming

Photo by Scott Girard. Dentist Chad Mueller ran a small practice on the Southeast side of Oregon for 16 years before moving into his new facility at 152 Alpine Parkway at the end of 2013. The new facility includes eight treatment rooms, though Mueller currently uses only six.

Dentist Chad Mueller was born and raised in Oregon, but that didn’t mean he wanted to live here forever.

After graduating from college at the University of Michigan and spending a year at a practice in Ceaderburg, however, the village eventually pulled him back in.

“I can’t say my grand plan was to come back here,” Mueller said. “At that time (in 1997), Oregon really needed another dentist. I talked to a couple of other dentists in Oregon and they said ‘we’re busy as heck.’”

And after 16 years at his first dental office in the Oregon Community Bank building on the village’s southeast side, Mueller opened a new, much larger office in January on the village’s west side at 152 Alpine Parkway.

“We’ve gotten a lot of good comments right away … that it’s just a lot more comfortable, warm, inviting environment for patients,” he said. “When you look at our facility, I think we’re state of the art.”


New business: Caring companion for seniors

Oregon resident Mary Wierschem is launching a new business aimed at helping senior citizens remain independent and in their own homes.

It’s called Caring Companion for Seniors, and will consist of Wierschem visiting seniors in their homes as a friend helping with various nonmedical tasks.

Wierschem is a retired schoolteacher and principal. She has attended numerous workshops on aging and working with individuals suffering from dementia and other age-related illness.

She will charge an hourly rate to visit and help seniors.

“I volunteered quite a bit throughout my adult life with seniors,” she said. “I’ve been visiting nursing homes. I’ve been a one-on-one companion for seniors, and right now I’m bringing Communion to Oregon Manor for the seniors there.”

After retiring from a career as an educator, Wierschem took a job at the Goodman Community Center in Madison, where she worked with people from age 3 to 93.


Oregon Floral gets new ownership

Sarah Turk is a familiar face at Oregon Floral after managing there for three years.

So it wasn’t any surprise for customers coming in to buy Valentine’s Day flowers to see her there these past couple of weeks. But now, Turk not only manages the store, she owns it.

Turk, whose legal last name is Lopez but is known as a “Turk sister” from her maiden name, had originally begun working there about three years ago, when former owner Pam Raschein asked her to manage the shop.

At the time, Finke was working in an office job while also running a wedding floral business out of her home.

But Raschein, who was also a realtor in the area, was busy and needed help.

Since then, Turk has developed a rapport with plenty of customers, and when Raschein wanted to sell, Turk eventually was excited to buy.

“I’ve been pretty much the face of Oregon floral for the past three years,” Turk said.