Ken Forbes moved his business Six One Six Entertainment, the largest entertainment centre in Medicine Hat, to a 12,000 square foot downtown location in 2020. This was right before the pandemic hit world-wide, and he was faced with regulations, while needing to renovate the new space he’d just moved into.
Carmen Lambert opened Medicine Hat’s first oil and vinegar tasting room in 2016, The Hat’s Olive Tap. Overtime, she’s shifted her retail store into a market and cafe and now serves a full food and drink menu, while also displaying organic skincare, spices and salts, and locally-made pottery.
Syed Naqvi was already undergoing challenges from the pandemic when he needed to replace his store’s interior light bulbs and set up a security system in 2020. He felt the condition of his store Penny Profit was affecting his first impression with new customers, and bringing doubt to current ones.
After 14 years of owning ClearView EyeCare in Medicine Hat, Kerrie Snider was faced with a large number of challenges when COVID-19 caused a world-wide pandemic. She was forced to close her business for seven weeks and, like many other small business owners, was unsure of how she would be impacted more in the future.
When the world was affected by a global pandemic in 2020, Community Futures Entre-Corp offered the Medicine Hat Business Innovation Grant (MHBIG) to support local business owners in pivoting their business and keeping their doors open.
Owners of DANTA Interiors, Dan and Taneill Selinger, knew how they could contribute their services to help remote workers during COVID-19, and the MHBIG allowed them to complete and launch this new service for their clients.
Growing up with a grandfather and uncle in the concrete trade, Rick Eckes fell in love with concrete finishing. In late 2018, Rick launched his own company, Next Gen Concrete Finishers. As the third generation of his family working in concrete, Rick’s uncle showed him that customer service, fair treatment of customers, and nurturing relationships was as important as the quality of the concrete work itself. It is on those pillars that Rick operates Next Gen.
Terralta Inc., is locally owned by Laura Shivak and Marcus Campbell. The business’ focus was geo-thermal product when it opened in 2006, and since then has shifted and expanded into an electrical, plumbing and solar company. When Shivak and Campbell were faced with the opportunity to potentially purchase a locally owned business in the area, they reached out for support from Community Futures Entre-Corp. Air-Tech Ltd., became a division of Terralta on Sept. 1, 2020 as an outcome.
Jerredi Hauck opened Limelitez Dance Academy in 2008, when she envisioned a studio that offered a unique perspective with a variety of dance styles to practice. Public health orders during the COVID-19 pandemic made in-person classes a concern for the business owner. With support from Community Futures Entre-Corp Hauck was able to access iPads and other technological equipment and use them to conduct online classes for her students.
“It’s been really great to have the opportunity to move classes back and forth between in-person and online,” she says. “And it’s an easy process for the teachers to set up the iPads in the studio.”
Pamela Lanz opened Pamela’s Foot Care Service in June 2011. She took a course while she worked as a nurse beforehand to learn about the trade and could instantly see herself doing it professionally. She went door to door, purchased advertisements and reached out to Community Futures Entre-Corp for support the same month and year to start Pamela’s Foot Care Service.
“They’ve helped me from the very beginning and the whole experience has been so comforting.” says Lanz.