Allen Pools and Spas named Vermont Retailer of the Year

first_img-30- Allen Pool, Spas & Chemical Corp,Tasha Wallis, Executive Director of the Vermont Retail Association (VRA) announced today the winners of the 2010 VRA Retailer of the Year (ROY) Awards. In 2009, VRA inaugurated the ROYs to recognize the ‘best of the best’ in the retail industry, which is a major sector of Vermont’s economy. Retailers employ more Vermonters’over 37,000’than any other business sector except health care, accounting for 14% of the entire work force.All Vermont businesses engaged in retail operations are eligible for nomination and consideration for the ROYs.  After considering numerous nominations, this year’s panel of judges from the business community chose to honor these winners:RETAILER OF THE YEARHonoring a Vermont retailer for Overall Excellence Allen Pools and Spas Rutland  White River Jct.  Williston Contact: Tom Colman  [email protected](link sends e-mail)  (802) 288-9028Excellence and growth go hand in hand, and no better proof exists than this year’s ROY winner.  Allen Pools and Spas has grown steadily for more than a half-century, even posting a 20% growth in 2009, one of the toughest economic years in memory. What’s more, in 2010 they added 20% growth onto that!Dan Allen, Sr. started the company in his Rutland home in 1957.  Today, it has 33 employees in three thriving stores. Allen Pools and Spas is not only growing and prosperous–it is truly a “corporation with a conscience.” Its primary products–HotSpring Portable Spas–are silent, use little documented electricity, and are virtually chemical free.  The company also launched its “A.T.P.” program in 2010, providing free removal and environmentally friendly disposal of old spas, along with charitable donations with proceeds from salvaged spas.In 2010, Allen Pools and Spas received the highest honor from the world’s leading manufacturer of spas, HotSpring Spas.  The award citation read, in part, ‘Their determination, dedication, loyalty, and passion for customer satisfaction never falters. They excel in every way.”That says it all about Allen Pools and Spas.  Tom Colman, sales manager, summarizes Mr. Allen’s 53 year success story like this: “Ed Allen has never thrown any idea under the bus. He is the Ben Franklin of the modern business world!’GREENTAILER OF THE YEARHonoring A Vermont Retailer For Environmental Excellence The Outdoor Gear Exchange Burlington Contact:  Marc Sherman  [email protected](link sends e-mail)  802-383-0382 x300The Outdoor Gear Exchange could be the prototypical 21st-century business model, and the differences start right at the top. Marc Sherman is the 15-year old company’s founder. In the old paradigm, his title would be ‘President and CEO,’ or some other official-sounding label. He prefers ‘Visionary.’‘GearX’ was born in a discussion around an Adirondack campfire and the forward-thinking design was part of Sherman’s vision from day one. That vision included a three-phase mission statement. The first year focus was on customers: ‘We have fun outdoors and want people to enjoy themselves in our store.’ In the second year, it expanded to include staff:  ‘Our staff, a most crucial ingredient in our overall success, is empowered to question, change, and improve our business.’  And after the third year, it embraced the community as well: ‘At the Outdoor Gear Exchange, we strongly believe in a responsible environmental stewardship. We strive to run our business in a way that promotes our staff, local community, and outdoor industry as a wholeâ ¦’Outdoor Gear Exchange’s commitment to the environment is total. Company founder Sherman serves on the Burlington Public Works Commission. The company contributes to the Conservation Alliance, donates a nickel for every bag not used, has virtually eliminated the use of paper, offsets trade show travel with carbon credits, and uses compact fluorescent bulbs and UV tinted glass to reduce energy costs. And those are just a few of its overall environmental initiatives. Together, they form the solid foundation of a company where ethical behavior and environmental protection top the list of goals.COMMUNITY GEMHonoring Vermont Retailers Who Make Unique And Valuable Contributions To Their Communities The Old Brick Store Charlotte Contact:  Carrie MacKillop  [email protected](link sends e-mail)  (802) 425-2421A Vermont village’s store plays a crucial role for its community, customers, owners, and visitors. One of the state’s most remarkable and venerated such establishments is Charlotte’s Old Brick Store, which had been operating since 1853. By 2008, though, the cherished icon had come on hard times. With bare shelves, cash flow down to a trickle, and renovations urgently needed, its ultimate demise seemed inevitable. Most potential purchasers would turn and run fast from such a decrepit property, but its very need was what attracted current owner/operator Carrie MacKillop most. ‘I needed something to dive into,’ she recalls. MacKillop purchased the store in January of 2009, with a plan for resurrecting the moribund landmark that was definitely not business as usual. From the outset, MacKillop intended to pursue ‘convenience with a conscience,’ re-inventing the historic store as a Community Supported Enterprise (CSE). In line with that, she sold memberships to raise money for much-needed renovations. Investors became members and would be reimbursed in store credits plus 10%.  No fewer than 90 families bought in, generating enough revenue for the renovations.       The Old Brick Store reopened on March 1, 2009 and has been flourishing ever since, offering food to rave about and a wide variety of beverages and wines. The store is still quintessentially Vermont, the rough edges here and there part of its inherent beauty. But the times have brought at least one 21st century necessity:  lattes are available. The vibrant new business generated a laudatory article in the Burlington Free Press. MacKillop herself penned an editorial for a local paper that eloquently captures the spirit and letter of her creation:   ‘The Brick represents childhood, adulthood, transitions and passages. It gives basis to vacation memories and the days of summer. People love the Brick not because of the goods it provides, but because of the memories it holds.’‘Judging to select winners was extremely challenging this year,’ noted Tasha Wallis. ‘There were so many outstanding retailers under consideration. But in the end, the three recipients stood out for the variety and quality of their laudable practices.The ROYs will be presented to the winners by Bonnie Hawley, President of VRA’s Board of Trustees, in an awards ceremony on Tuesday November 9 at 2 p.m. at Table 24 in Rutland.  The press is invited to attend.last_img read more

Garlic stock will only suffice until April without Chinese imports

first_imgIndonesians could find it difficult to buy garlic during the Ramadan holiday season this year if the country fails to get imports from China soon, an official has said.Food Resilience Agency (BKP) head Agung Hendriadi said that the garlic stock had already fallen to 80,000 tons as of Thursday. With monthly garlic consumption of some 46,000 tons, current stocks would only suffice until April.So far, the Trade Ministry has only issued import permit letters for 62,000 tons out of 103,000 tons recommended by the Agriculture Ministry. Agung urged the Trade Ministry to issue a permit for at least 80,000 tons of garlic to fulfil domestic needs. Read also: Rising garlic price cannot be blamed on coronavirusIndonesia has long depended on China, the world’s leading garlic producer, to fulfil its domestic garlic consumption. In 2019 alone, Indonesia imported around 465,000 tons of garlic with an import value of nearly $530 million, Statistics Indonesia (BPS) data showed.Indonesia is only able to produce 85,000 tons per year or only 10 percent of annual garlic needs, with the remaining 90 percent fulfilled by imports.The Business Competition Supervisory Commission (KPPU) commissioner Guntur Saragih also voiced concern on Feb. 14 but said the rising prices could not be blamed on the coronavirus.He instead blamed slow import realization for the scarcity, which he said had already happened before the virus broke out. The KPPU said that the government had issued import recommendations for more than 100,000 tons, 60,000 tons of which would be used to ensure supplies until the Ramadhan holidays – which were unrealized as of Feb. 14.”It’s a problem when imports are done late. Supply will certainly thin out, thus automatically shifting [prices],” Guntur said. However, his team’s investigation had yet to ascertain whether importers were intentionally holding back imports to push up prices.This is not the first time that garlic prices have skyrocketed. Last year, garlic prices spiked to more than Rp 80,000 per kg due to import recommendations not being issued until April 2019.Topics : “We are also trying to [import] from other countries like India and Thailand that also produce garlic,” he told reporters after a discussion with the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Kadin) in Jakarta on Thursday.The latest import effort aims to maintain supply and avoid further price increases amid the coronavirus outbreak. The virus has been blamed for the diminishing garlic supply from China, thereby spiking the commodity’s price in Indonesia.The price currently stands at a national average of Rp 46,600 (US$3.35) per kilogram, almost double the usual Rp 25,000 to Rp 30,000 per kg, according to the Information Center for Strategic Food Prices (PIHPS).“Insya Allah [God Willing], we hope that the coronavirus will go away soon so that we can rejoice once again,” Agung added.last_img read more

Modular seats meet many applications

first_imgDEVELOPED by Vogel Interieur Schienenfahrzeuge in conjunction with TriCon Design of Weiden, the Wing modular seating system has been designed for applications ranging from metro cars and suburban rolling stock to high-speed trains. Wing components meeting railway mechanical strength and fire safety requirements can be assembled as desired; four different combinations illustrate the wide range of potential uses.The basic Wing seat comprises a seat pan and a seat back in shaped plywood, mounted on a frame. For a greater degree of comfort, flat padding can be clipped to the seat and back, and a headrest provided. Armrests and fully-padded coverings in textiles, synthetics or leather are available for vehicles deployed on longer journeys; an adjustable version fitted with a table, and other accessories such as a reading light and waste bin, would be suitable for first class applications. The lightweight Wing family has been developed for outright purchase or hire, and its modular character lends itself to simplified, cost-effective maintenance. To cater for the rail market, established bus seating supplier Vogel Industrie established its Vogel Interieur Schienenfahrzeuge subsidiary in 1993 at the Waggonbau Ammendorf site in Halle. Current production includes Type RE seats for German Railway regional express trains. Vogel Industrie GmbH, Karlsruhe, GermanyReader Enquiry Number 111CAPTION: Accessories for the basic Wing seat range from headrests and flat padding (left) to armrests and seat-back tableslast_img read more

The Latest: Bears donating $2 million for virus relief

first_imgThe Latest: Bears donating $2 million for virus relief The Bangladesh-Australia series is the second in the world championship to be postponed. England returned home from Sri Lanka last month at the start of the outbreak.___Southampton has become the first Premier League club to announce its players will defer some of their salaries amid the coronavirus pandemic.The Premier League had wanted all squads to take a 30% pay cut but the move led to a standoff with the players’ union.The league has been indefinitely suspended. The WCF has adjusted its qualifying for the 2021 world championships and the 2022 Winter Olympics to compensate for the missing tournaments.Also Thursday, Curling Canada canceled all of its remaining championships for the 2019-20 season, which ends in the spring.___The International Tennis Federation is putting about half of its staff on furlough and cutting other employees’ salaries because of the coronavirus pandemic.The move includes a 30% pay drop in 2020 for ITF President David Haggerty and reductions of 10% or 20% for others. Associated Press The UCI says it is reimbursing all registration fees of canceled events to help organizers.The UCI will take a considerable financial hit from paying those fees and it also expects its Olympic revenue payment from the delayed Tokyo Games to be postponed and likely reduced.The UCI says its leadership has agreed to reduce salaries or allowances and furloughed all 130 employees of the UCI and the world cycling center.___Australia’s rugby league championship plans to restart on May 28. Indiana also has canceled the junior-senior all-star games on June 3 and the All-Star Shootout on June 6.“I am sad for the players and coaches who comprise this year’s All-Star teams,” Indiana game director Mike Broughton said in a statement. “This is a once in a lifetime experience for the seniors who made the team, but they do have the satisfaction that they are an Indiana All-Star for life.”The Indiana boys hold a 99-44 advantage in the seniors’ series while the Indiana girls lead 50-38.The move comes less than a month after the Indiana High School Athletic Association canceled the boys state tournament for the first time since its inception in 1911. ___ April 9, 2020 ___Australia’s two-test cricket tour of Bangladesh in June has been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.The first test was to start on June 11 in Chattogram. The second from June 19 in Dhaka.Both were part of the world test championship. The final of that tournament is scheduled for next June. Trying to find a new slot for the tests will be a challenge.Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts says “the global cricket calendar is very busy but we will do everything we can to honor our commitment to Bangladesh and will continue to work with the BCB on an agreed date.” ___The Indiana-Kentucky boys and girls high school all-star games have been canceled for the first time since World War II.Officials from the two states cited measures taken by both state governments to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, including the closure of schools through the rest of academic year.The boys series began in 1940 but was not played in 1943 or 1944. The girls games were added in 1976 and have never previously been called off.The series pits the top seniors from each state and were scheduled to play June 5 in Georgetown, Kentucky, and June 6 in Indianapolis. The top juniors were scheduled to square off June 1 at Floyd Central High School near the Ohio River. Haggerty wrote in an email to the AP on Thursday that the ITF’s finance committee and board “looked at all areas where we felt we could make savings in the short term to be prepared for the return to tennis.”Haggerty also said that the group’s reserve funds are available to help individual countries’ tennis federations be prepared for tournaments and grassroots efforts once it’s deemed safe to return to competition.The ITF oversees the Fed Cup and Davis Cup, along with hundreds of lower-tier tournaments around the world.The Fed Cup finals this month have been postponed; the Davis Cup finals are scheduled for late November. All tournaments are on hold until at least mid-July.Haggerty wrote to the AP: “In these unprecedented times, it is hard to predict when we will return to tennis.”center_img Southampton says players will defer part of their salaries in April, May and June “to help protect the future of the club, the staff that work within it and the community we serve.”Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhüttl, his coaching staff and directors will also defer some pay over three months.Southampton says it has “put measures in place to ensure that all staff not deferring part of their salaries will continue to receive 100% of their pay, paid in the normal way until 30th June.”___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 The NRL has been suspended since March 23.The governing ARL Commission also says it intends to play a full three-game State of Origin series.Commissioner Wayne Pearce says they wanted to set a date and then work on finalizing a competition. It will depend on border restrictions in New South Wales and Victoria states and New Zealand opening up.Pearce says “a date is to give certainty to players and their schedules, clubs and thousands of people who are out of work through clubs and millions of fans.”He says “the situation is changing dramatically and we need to get moving. It is in the best interests of our clubs, our players, our stakeholders and importantly our fans that the competition resumes as quickly and as safely as possible.” The museum and ballfields are closed to the public, as mandated under Ontario’s declaration of emergency.___The NBA, the National Basketball Players Association and ESPN will stream a HORSE tournament on ESPN’s app.The NBA HORSE Challenge will have eight participants. The quarterfinals are to be shown Sunday and the semifinals and final on April 16.The quarterfinal matchups are Trae Young of the Atlanta Hawks against former NBA player and ESPN analyst Chauncey Billups; WNBA great and 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Tamika Catchings against Mike Conley Jr. of the Utah Jazz; Zach LaVine of the Chicago Bulls against NBA retiree and ESPN analyst Paul Pierce; and Chris Paul of the Oklahoma City Thunder against Allie Quigley of the WNBA’s Chicago Sky. The Bears gave $250,000 to the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund on March 20, and they said they plan to donate $250,000 each to three other causes — the Advocate Charitable Foundation’s Relief Fund for Critical Care, Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund and the University of Chicago’s Community Support Programs.“We will be forever grateful to the healthcare providers, first responders, grocers, sanitation workers, janitors and everyone keeping our communities healthy and safe during this time,” Bears president Ted Phillips said. “Please continue to do your part and stay home so we can slow down the virus and save lives.”___The World Curling Federation has canceled its championships this year.The men’s, women’s, mixed doubles and senior championships will not be held in 2020. The events had already been indefinitely postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic track and field trials for next year’s Tokyo Games will remain in Montreal.Athletics Canada announced Thursday that the trials will take place in 2021 at Montreal’s Complexe sportif Claude-Robillard. The event is expected to be held June 24-27.Montreal was scheduled to hold the trials this summer from June 25-28, but the event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.The trials will serve as the final event to determine the athletes nominated to the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic teams competing in Tokyo.Montreal hosted the Canadian Track and Field Championships in 2019. The last Olympic trials held in Montreal were in 1996. Players must call their shots before the attempt and dunking is not allowed. The players will be isolated and competing on separate home courts.State Farm is the presenting sponsor and will offer a prize pool exceeding $200,000 to charities working on the coronavirus response. The event will be pre-taped.___The International Cycling Union says it can get through its greatest crisis since World War II with limited damage “as long as the situation does not last longer than current predictions.”The UCI has received more than 650 requests for postponements or cancellations from organizers because of the coronavirus pandemic. That represents 30% of its international calendar. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on sports around the world:___The Chicago Bears say they are donating $2 million to COVID-19 relief efforts in Illinois. The Tokyo Games will take place July 23 to Aug. 8, 2021, after being postponed for a year due to the novel coronavirus. The Paralympic Games will run from Aug. 24 to Sept. 5.___The Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony has been postponed indefinitely because of the COVID-19 pandemic.Former Toronto Blue Jays first baseman and two-time World Series champion John Olerud, 2006 American League MVP Justin Morneau, former Blue Jays pitcher Duane Ward, and Montreal sportscaster Jacques Doucet were scheduled to be enshrined in a ceremony in St. Marys, Ontario, on June 20.The hall of fame said in a release Thursday that the ceremony and related events are postponed until further notice.last_img read more

PUL’s US$100,000 Case Reawakens

first_imgLiberian journalists under the banner, “Journalists Dignity,” have begun an advocacy for the prosecution of one of their former presidents—George Barpeen.The journalists are calling for Mr. Barpeen to account for US$100,000 donated by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to the Press Union of Liberia about five years ago.The money was meant for the construction of PUL headquarters. Making their presence felt during celebration of World Press Freedom Day in Bopolu, Gbarpolu County on May 3, 2014, journalists including Eddie Harmon and J. Edwood N. Dennis assertively indicated that the misapplication of the money has dented the credibility of all journalists.The group said they are going to continue their advocacy until tangible result is established on how the money was handled.Speaking to the Daily Observer, broadcast Journalist Eddie Harmon said the fate of the money donated by President Sirleaf continues to be in limbo, and on many occasions journalists are attacked of corruption, receiving reproach that they are not credible to speak or write about corruption when they (journalists) themselves are corrupt and have embezzled the President’s donations to the Union.According to Journalist Harmon, this situation has a negative reflection on the media and all journalists in Liberia as they write and report corruption in high places.“We are all affected by this stigma of the misapplication of this US$100,000 and not George Barpeen alone.  You will be questioned about it as a journalist, and you will have to justify how the money was used,” Harmon noted.The case surrounding the US$100,000 is in court, but Mr. Harmon said considering the delay in adjudicating the case, it is better to turn it around by advocating for the indictment of the Press Union leadership that handled the money to account because if nothing is done, journalists’ credibility will continue to be questioned.According to him, the company that was contracted to construct the PUL headquarters now no longer exists. However, he disclosed that the company now uses different nomenclature, and as such it makes it uncertain for people to know whether the company can be traced. He failed to give the new name that the company now operates under.Harmon and Dennis in a collective view said the campaign is meant to mount pressure on the leadership of the PUL to push for the case and not to be dead as those connected to it allegedly want it to be.Other concerned journalists at the World Press Freedom Day in Bopolu joined the campaign by chanting slogan of the campaigners, calling for judicial probe into the matter to establish the status of the money.Reacting to the concern raised by the journalists, Press Union president K. Abdullai Kamara said expression of views about issue is one of the characteristics of free press and therefore does not have any problem with the campaign staged by the journalists during the World Press Freedom celebration.Mr. Kamara said his predecessors—George Barpeen to whom the money was given and Peter Quaqua, who also took the matter to court, had both given written statements about the fate of the money, and a committee is investigating the matter.He, however, assured that the company to which US$98,000 was given still exists and according to him, the company contends that the amount was small for the size of the building to be constructed.The PUL president said at the Union leadership level, they are embarking on the company to provide the money given because it is not doing the work for which the money was intended.He said the matter in court is about the cancellation of the contract between PUL and the unknown contractor, and that the judge is about to come out with a decision which makes it difficult for it (case) to be withdrawn from the court now.It can be recalled that President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf donated US$100,000 to the PUL for the construction of headquarter for the media umbrella organization.Former Press Union president George Barpeen amidst protests from some quarters for rejection of the gratuity defended that it was not an ethical breach for the Union to receive the money from the President as it was meant for development that will reflect the image of the country.Since the donation, the proposed site of the organization in Sinkor lies in ruin with no sign of development taking place there.The fate of the money has since been in limbo and the matter taken to court for cancellation of the contract.President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf during the installation of former president Peter Quaqua for the second term of office rhetorically praised the media for working hard to expose and report corruption in government, but raise concern about the US$100,000 in this way: “We recognize the role of the press in exposing corruption and reporting it as government has opened the enabling environment to exercise this freedom.  However, we still look up to the media to give us account for the US$100,000 given sometimes back to construct headquarters for the union.”This concern sparked up criticism among journalists against the leadership of George Barpeen with prejudice that hierarchies of the union had shared the money leaving the project undone. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more