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Businesswoman plans to open cafe on Factory Street

in Local Business 22 views

Erica Turck has more changes brewing for her yoga studio-turned-juice bar-turned cafe.

Recently, Turck purchased a commercial building at 507 Factory St., plans to renovate the building and move her cafe there with more changes in store for her business.

She’s expanding her cafe — now featuring an array of healthy options and coffees on her menu — into a restaurant with a limited evening menu and a full bar when she moves to Factory Street.

“It’s still in the early planning stages,” she said Monday.

About two years ago, she opened the Atman cafe in 2,500 square feet of space on the ground floor of a Newell Street apartment building, where she offers healthy juices, smoothies, smoothie bowls, homemade granola and other healthy options.

Since opening on Newell Street, she’s refocused the business from a juice bar to offering espresso based drinks and pour over and regular drip coffee.

The business was renamed North Country Grounds Cafe and Resto to reflect that change.

And she’s now working on getting her coffee roaster certification through the Specialty Coffee Association, the nation’s largest national coffee schools. She will then make her own brand of coffee products.

In recent months, Turck started talking to the Watertown Local Development Corp., Watertown Savings Bank and the Development Authority of the North Country to obtain financing to help with her plans, she said.

She hopes to develop an addition at the back of the building and create a patio, where she can teach yoga classes.

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With sewer hookups paused after discharge violation, Watertown car wash project pulls plug

in Local Business 347 views

Last month, an engineering company inquired about what it would take to get a Splash Car Wash Inc. built on Arsenal Street.

But Gerrett Steiner, an engineer with Bohler Engineering in Rochester, was told there was a stumbling block.

The Connecticut car-wash chain could not get a sanitary sewer permit from the city.

That’s because of a moratorium on any new sanitary connections to the Western Outfall Trunk Sewer basin, after the city was cited for discharging untreated wastewater into Beaver Meadows, a large wetlands west of the city limits.

So sewer permits cannot be granted to development projects on that side of the city — the moratorium also includes Coffeen Street and the town of Watertown — until the discharge problem is corrected.

The moratorium affects a $20 million, 120-unit affordable housing site that a Rochester developer plans to build on Commerce Drive and the proposed $85 million Thousand Islands Event Center on Route 3 in the town. Construction of two single-family homes in the city are also affected.

And on late Friday, the Splash Car Wash, which was going to be built at 1068 Arsenal St. and on the former site of the Dealmaker Dodge-Chrysler-Jeep, became the first casualty of the moratorium when the Connecticut company pulled the plug on the project.

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Watertown’s Cheney Tire sold to Pennsylvania chain

in Local Business 489 views

Cheney Tire, which was in business for 69 years, has been sold to a Pennsylvania tire store chain.

Steve Shannon Tire, of Bloomburg, Pennsylvania, finalized the deal earlier this month for the State Street company, formerly owned by Tom and Maureen Cheney.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Cheney Tire has been in business since 1954 and offers passenger, light truck, commercial, farm and OTR tire sales and services.

Tom Cheney recently declined to comment about selling the business, except to say it had “acquired a new owner” and planned to celebrate its 70th anniversary in March.

Cheney Tire began as a gas station and service shop on State Street in March 1954, and the business has become a fixture in the city of Watertown. It changed its name to Cheney Tire in 1978. The company began with a two-bay gas station and now includes 145,000 square feet of warehouse space.

Steve Shannon Tire will retain 32 employees, a large service center and a warehouse/distribution center with the new acquisition, according to the company.

Steve Shannon Tire now has 38 retail and commercial locations throughout Pennsylvania and New York, and nine wholesale distribution centers that service in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland.

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Watertown restaurants faced decision to close due to water main break; bottled water sought

in Local Business 340 views

WATERTOWN — With reports of the city’s water supply about to run dry, local restaurants were facing a decision Thursday about whether to remain open or shut down due to the water main break.

Todd Tarzia, owner of Vito’s Gourmet on Public Square, said he alerted staff to be on the lookout for a text message Friday morning, if he was to receive information that there’s no water pressure at the restaurant.

Tarzia said Thursday afternoon that employees were boiling water, and he planned to bring in bottled water to the business.

He planned to remain open regular hours Thursday, which meant closing at 3 p.m.

If they had to close for a day, Tarzia said, “It would be terrible.”

“We’re a small business and every little bit of business coming in the door makes a difference,” he said while adding that if they had to close on Friday, they would not be able to make a profit for the week.

“Friday’s our busiest day, and I’m anticipating maybe we’ll have to close tomorrow, and we’re going to basically lose the profit for the whole week if that’s the case,” he said.

Tarzia said he held water in the back of the restaurant so if they did run out of water, employees could use that to clean the dishes.

Han Le, owner of CaffeineHolic in the Paddock Arcade, had water in the sinks as of shortly after 1 p.m. Thursday. However, she could not use the ice machine, so the business was only serving hot coffee.

Le said that she at least planned to have a late opening on Friday. Opening late could hurt her business as 30 to 40% of sales come before 9 a.m.

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Heavy-Lift Drone Can Haul 220-Pounds of Cargo for Delivery, Aid, or Construction Companies

in Technology 240 views

A heavy-lifting drone is now on sale in Europe that can haul loads in excess of 200 pounds.

Called the FB3, it’s the first heavy-lifting drone with this level of versatility the market has seen, and the company envisions it as an irreplaceable asset for delivery and logistics companies, forestry and logging, and disaster relief.

Imagine 220 pounds, or 100 kilograms of food, aid, medicine, or disaster shelter, being able to be carried into remote locations quickly, without the need for a large landing area, and without any risk to the pilot or an expensive helicopter.

The FB3 is made by FlyingBasket, which wrote that “the journey with the FB3 drone has been marked by extensive testing and collaboration with customers across various industries, enabling them to tailor its capabilities to meet specific and relevant needs.”

The FB3’s outstanding heavy cargo transport and lifting capability has been rigorously demonstrated in a wide range of environments, including forests, wind parks, and urban settings. It can carry 70 kg, or around 147 pounds in its cargo hold, or 100 kg, around 220 pounds, in a basket or sling suspended from a hook on the drone’s undercarriage.

“The FB3 commercial availability is another milestone in the roadmap of FlyingBasket, who continuously commit to innovation, safety, and excellence within the drone industry. It represents a significant leap forward in cargo transportation possibilities,” states Moritz Moroder, the CEO of FlyingBasket.

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Researchers Invent Way to Turn Harmful Mine Waste into Healthy Soil

in Enviroment 203 views

An Australian-Canadian science and engineering team has discovered a way of turning mine waste into arable soil that is already being used to grow maize and sorghum.

‘Tailings’ is the official industry term for mineral waste leftover after separating away all the useful metals from mined material. Typically toxic from heavy metals and unusable for anything else because of this, tailings are kept in storage facilities to prevent them from polluting groundwater or farmland.

Hoping to save billions of dollars in such storage fees and remove the threat of disasters that occur when such facilities break down or are abandoned, a team from the universities of Queensland and Saskatchewan sought to see whether it was possible to convert this lifeless rock into healthy soil by returning microbial life to it.

“Tailings have no biologically friendly properties for growing plants. Roots and water cannot penetrate them, and soluble salts and metals in tailings can kill plants and soil microbes,” said Longbin Huang a professor at the Univ. of Queensland. “If you wait for nature to slowly weather the tailings and turn them into soil, it could take a couple thousand years.”

Using the Canadian Light Source (CLS), Huang and his team found a way to accelerate this process of repopulating the tailings with soil microbes.

The CLS is a giant synchrotron, a type of circular particle accelerator. It works by accelerating charged particles (electrons) through sequences of magnets until they reach almost the speed of light.

Using the CLS’s synchrotron light the scientists could visualize the detailed mechanism of how they were able to develop the organic-mineral interfaces and revitalize the tailings.

“We needed to use the SM beamline to unravel at the nanometer scale the immediate interfaces and how the minerals change, and how they interact with organics,” said Huang. “The facility access and the expert inputs of the beamline staff were critical to enable us to collect quality data and therefore to have reliable scientific evidence.”

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3 Cooks in Prison Honed Creativity with Drab Ingredients–Now Out, Award-Winning Chef And Businessmen

in People 247 views

“There are geniuses in there,” said 2-time James Beard Award winner, Keith Corbin, referring to incarcerated men and their ability to cook with the most lifeless, flavorless ingredients imaginable.

Corbin spent 10 years in prison himself, and combined with his career as an award-winning chef at his restaurant Alta Adams, he knows what it takes to make good food out of anything.

Corbin was profiled in a feature piece at the Guardian that twisted together the stories of several entrepreneurs who launched careers in the food industry after more than a decade of smoking sausages in a toilet with toilet paper, or making tamal dough with ground-up Fritos.

Another of the featured ex-cons was Chef Michael Carter, executive at Down North Pizza in Philidelphia where he employs only formerly incarcerated men, or returning citizens as he called them, and offers them half-way or low-income housing with the apartment building located above his pizza shop.

His pies, mostly square ones, have made the New York Times best pizza list, and won the Best of Philly 2021 category for square pie.

After Carter was released from a 12-year sentence, he took a class for resume writing for food professionals and was asked what experience he had. He replied he had cooked in prison for 2,000—he got a job the next week.

“The mission is actually what made me accept the job,” Carter said, “to be able to have a voice and tell people about the plight in our community of returning citizens.”

It’s something that both Carter and Corbin reported to Sonya Singh at the Guardian—that prison squeezes men, and that squeeze sometimes creates diamonds.

“You have people in there that literally never went to school for technology, but the phone breaks and they’ll figure out how to fix the motherboard,” Corbin said. “There’s geniuses in there, ingenuity.”

Corbin, on the other hand, went into prison with a deep connection to food. His grandmother grew tomatoes and collard greens in their yard, and would wake up at 5 a.m. to start cooking for the working people in her community.

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Lithium Discovery in Crater in Nevada Could Be Biggest Deposit Ever Found

in Technology 206 views

If even half of the lithium that’s estimated to exist in the McDermitt caldera is mined, it would change the world. Full stop.

Early this year, GNN reported that massive lithium reserves totaling 5.9 million metric tons were discovered in the Indian mountains near Kashmir which put them among the highest known lithium reserves on Earth by country.

The McDermitt caldera reserves are almost 700% larger—40 million metric tons, 13 million more than the known reserves of every lithium-producing mine on Earth.

With every manufacturing nation running around for lithium to make batteries and computer chips, any additional source is highly anticipated.

Up until now, large deposits have been found all around the world, but Bolivia is believed to hold the highest at between 16 to 21 million metric tons. However, political turmoil and low development rates have interfered with getting their reserves out of the ground.

“If you believe their back-of-the-envelope estimation, this is a very, very significant deposit of lithium,” Anouk Borst, a geologist at KU Leuven University, told journalist Anthony King. “It could change the dynamics of lithium globally, in terms of price, security of supply, and geopolitics.”

A new analysis of the in situ lithium reveals that the sediments of the McDermitt caldera include a unique claystone composed of the mineral illite that could contain as much as 2.4% lithium by composition, which is higher than the more widely extracted magnesium smectite.

The claystone formed after incredible amounts of alkaline magma, about 1,000 times more magma than Mount St. Helens in 1980, was blasted out of the volcano, located on the border with Nevada and Oregon. Cooling down, it formed ignimbrite, which eroded away at the crater floor to produce lithium-rich particles.

After which, a lake formed in the crater which collected the lithium in mineral-rich clay at the bottom before another eruption mixed in a lithium-containing alkaline brine.

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Scrub Hub wears its vision well, celebrates a decade in business

in Local Business 235 views

The Scrub Hub, which began as a vision to compete in a niche market, is celebrating a decade in business.

The mother-daughter team that owns and operates the store saw a necessity 10 years ago and with local resources, have seen their store at 19033 State Route 11 grow with new products and a growing base of customers, making the Hub more than about sanitary duds. Bonnie M. Herman, now a part-time X-ray technician, saw a need from her years of working in the medical field and approached her daughter, Emily Herman, with an idea.

“She’s been buying scrubs all her career and we always had to travel outside the north country to get them,” Emily said. “Even on family vacations, we’d look for a scrub store.”

“On vacations in Florida, I would stock up down there,” Bonnie said. “There were two stores within five minutes of each other, and you could try the scrubs on.”

Now, people from miles away travel to the Scrub Hub to stock up.

“We’re basically the only free-standing store that specializes in scrubs north of Syracuse,” Bonnie said. “And we have people who come from Syracuse, Massena and Malone to shop.”

In 2013, Emily graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business economics from SUNY Cortland. Her mom suggested they put their experiences together and open a store.

Bonnie credited the Watertown Small Business Development Center based at Jefferson Community College with giving her the knowledge and confidence to open a store.

“It’s a great course and I would suggest anybody who is going into any type of business to take it,” Bonnie said. “It’s phenomenal. They had guest speakers that came in and you could ask questions.”

In the course, she learned about such topics as banking and insurance.

“And things that you wouldn’t even think that you would need,” she said.

When it came time for Bonnie to write a business plan, she said the center was there to help her. She felt confident, her “ducks in a row,” when she approached Community Bank for a loan request.

“When she brought the idea to me, it was like, ‘Oh, gosh,’ because I didn’t know anything about scrubs,” Emily said. “I had worked at a shoe store in high school and through college. I knew retail. But not scrubs.”

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