Baptist’s Business Over Breakfast Brings in the Best

COLUMBUS, MS – Courtesy of the Columbus-Lowndes Chamber of Commerce

courtesy photo

Baptist Memorial Hospital-Golden Triangle sponsored Business Over Breakfast this morning, and it was a resounding success! BOB is an extension of their existing Business After Hours program, which has proven to be quite popular. Now, business professionals and curious citizens alike have more opportunities to check out local businesses, network with one another, and have some good chow while they’re at it. All are welcome to these events — Please see the CLCC FaceBook page for a schedule of these and other events.

Baptist CEO Paul Cade presented an informative overview and update on BMHGT for the assembled crowd.

The next BOB is scheduled for 7:30 AM at CSpire on Hwy 45, where one of the first BOB events took place.

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Teaching Kids About Business . . . Like a BOSS!

Courtesy of the Greater Starkville Development Partnership

Does your youngster long to learn more about running or even starting their own business? Do they have some time to spare and the drive to make a pitch for the perfect shop? Then swing on by the GSDP’s page and see about singing them up for this year’s Innovation Challenge.

The competition is open to all Oktibbeha students from 6th thru 12th grades; a parental permission form is required (see the link below). Over $2,000 worth of prizes will be available to the winners. It involves a teacher-led program to help develop ideas that might some day see the light of day. The kickoff was last night (March 5th), so give them a call ASAP if you’re interested!

Who knows, maybe your teenager has some fantastic ideas that could make for a good business model? There’s one way to find out…Here’s what the GDSP has to say about the competition:

Explore entrepreneurship like a boss and turn your idea into a reality with the International Paper Innovation Challenge: Ideas 2 Enterprise. And with $2000 of prize money on the line, it’s time to prepare to make your pitch.

The Partnership and MSU eCenter have teamed up with International Paper for the second annual Innovation Challenge, a hands-on opportunity for innovative Oktibbeha County middle & high school students to experience a real-world entrepreneurial process.

During the 4-week, teacher-led program, participating individuals and teams will:

Develop and pitch their own business ideas
Spend a day at the MSU eCenter learning and exploring business development
Work one-on-one with MSU student and staff mentors
Learn how to develop a business plan
Pitch ideas at the eCenter roundtable
Compete for a $500 grand prize and scholarships to the MSU ICreate Entrepreneurship Summer Camp

For further information regarding the challenge, contact Jeffrey Rupp at (662)-364-7021 or by email at

For more information, please click here.

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Proffitts Porch is Back and Ready to Feed Y’all!

There’s nothing quite as American as bald eagles and homemade chocolate chess pie!!
My good friends over at Proffitt’s Porch are back in business after the flood waters receded this week. With all the issues with the tornado, we can’t forget all the good people that got hit by the near-record floods.
Legend has it Mr. Campbell waded through nearly a mile of flood waters to do his payroll this week- that’s a man that loves his team and deserves our support!
I got a snap of Campbell and Teresa Proffitt with their amazing crew today…then I got myself a legendary roast beef po-boy. Best in the business! Teresa is also making fresh pies all week! And, with all of the fish sitting in puddles from the floods, there are bald eagles hanging out nearby.
So, get up, grab a friend, and get yourself over to The Porch!

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United Deli Still Going Strong Despite Tornado Damage

“I’m so blessed, now we need to take care of our friends here who lost so much”

Mr.John over at United Deli is all class- and he’s open for business.


United Deli suffered roof damage, had a fence down, and a piece of wood went through the kitchen wall. Not enough to shut them down.

United Deli is located at 212 Tuscaloosa Rd in Columbus, in the gas station on the western side at the corner of Garner Blvd & Tuscaloosa Rd.

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Entrepreneurship Making its Mark in the GTR

GOLDEN TRIANGLE – Courtesy of The Dispatch


A new restaurant and bakery are on their way to downtown. Bakery and southern-style restaurant Georgia Blue plans to open two locations in Starkville. Mayor Spruill stated that the plan is for one of them to be on S. Jackson St, in the front section of the old Mississippi Motors building.

327 Hwy. 12 W. is the new location for the newly-reopened Midtown Outfitters. They offer Mississippi State apparel and customizable shirts, shoes, coolers, hats and more. The new location will be open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Saturdays from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 


JB’s House of Blues, located at 20 22nd St. S., seeks to serve customers in two ways: during the day (10 – 5 daily) as a traditional restaurant, and as a night club with live DJs and concerts from Thursday through Sunday evenings, 8pm – 1am

VM Squared and the Chamber of Commerce are collaborating on a business seminar this Tuesday at Lion Hills Center focused on offering cyber security tips. The event will run from 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m. If interested, you must register at the Chamber’s website; tickets will cost $15. 

A newly remodeled Wendy’s has re-opened its doors at 312 Hwy. 45 Alternate N.

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Amory to get Little Caesars

AMORY, MS – Courtesy of the Monroe Journal

Veteran franchise owner Jason Ellis of Saltillo has announced that he will be opening a Little Caesars pizza store at the former location of Daylight Donuts on Hwy 278: “I opened my first Little Caesars store in 2013 in Booneville after working for Little Caesars for six years. Since then, I have expanded to Fulton, Ripley and Hamilton, Alabama. I have been wanting to build a store in Amory for several years but was unable to find a suitable location until now. I am excited to finally bring our brand to Amory,” he said.

He plans to open up shop in late March/Early April, with 2 full-time employees and about 40 part-timers.

“We look forward to serving the citizens of Amory and surrounding communities. Look for our mailer coming to a mailbox near you in March, which will have our menu and offers attached,” Ellis said.

Please click here for the original article.

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Serious About Getting into Shape? Consider a Personal Trainer

GOLDEN TRIANGLE, MS – Courtesy of the Dispatch

Many people decide to sign up for gym memberships this time of year, whether it’s due to a New Year’s resolution or simply a desire to fit in their old jeans from college. A number of folks have found that sticking to their weight loss goals is often easier with the help of a personal trainer to help them. Even without a trainer, bringing a friend with similar goals along, so you can “compete” with one another and remain accountable, can help.

Beth Jeffers, owner of The Fitness Factor in Columbus, has some thoughts on the matter: “People make lifestyle changes at the beginning of the new year, of course. . . There’s accountability in that,” she said. “A lot of times, people do the same thing and get bored. I see a lot of people who just do the same thing every day.”

Eddie Myles, trainer, works with P. K. Kong at the OCH Wellness Center earlier this year
Courtesy photo – Ben Mackin

Tom Campbell, owner of Tom Campbell Fitness and Sports Performance in Starkville, says that unmotivated people often “find” reasons not to work out: “Several things happen,” Campbell said. “Life gets in the way. I had a guy who was on a ladder at work, fell off the ladder at work and broke his arm. He said, ‘I have a broken arm, and I can’t work out’. But in reality, we can always work around that.”

Some people who desperately want to improve themselves find their own existing conditions to be part of the problem. Eddie Myles, director of the Wellness Connection in Starkville, had a client who was nearly 600 pounds and had difficulty getting around the house safely, let alone getting to a gym.

“I got a call and she wanted me to come to her house,” Myles said. “I started going to her house because she was having problems getting from her bedroom to the kitchen. That was like an hour workout for her, carrying that much weight, and you’re out of shape.”

In time, working together with Myles, his client dropped over a hundred pounds; she has since moved away, but remains in contact with him, to let him know that she is continuing to shed the weight: “She was doing so good,” he said. “I mean, literally, she was on the phone crying.”

Please click here for the original article.

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Kroger Greeter ‘Miss Ann’ Feeling 77 years young

COLUMBUS, MS – Courtesy of The Dispatch

77-year-old “Miss Ann” Wozniak serves the public as Kroger’s friendly store greeter, and has been doing this sort of thing for a remarkably long time – since she was 11 years old. She has more friends than she can count because of this, and she’s beloved by many. The cheerful grandma doesn’t see herself giving up her position anytime soon.

Columbus Kroger greeter Ann Wozniak said she loves working with fellow associates such as Quanisha Travis, right. “Every day, the first thing I do is go around and say hello to all the checkers and baggers and give them a hug if they’re not busy,” Wozniak said.
Photo by: Slim Smith/Dispatch Staff

“All the customers love her,” said Ty Sanders, one of the store’s assistant managers. “All the associates love her, too. She has a history with Kroger. She’s worked here before. That’s one of the reasons we decided to hire her back.”

“I play with kids and help customers,” Wozniak said. “When I’m working on the other end of the store, next to the pharmacy, I look out for the old people, even though I’m an old person myself. So many older people come to get their medicines and I’m always watching out for them, to see if they need help.”

Wozniak grew up on the South side of Columbus, and struggled to get by, as many still do. However, she had help: “My little grandmother was just the sweetest person. She worked like a dog to take care of all of us,” Wozniak said. “She had six sons that gave her a whole lot of trouble. . .It was just a hard life.”

“She’s become kind of a morale-builder for the store,” Sanders went on to say. “She’s a very positive influence. She always comes in with a smile on her face and ready to work.”

“I’ve had a good life,” she said. “I can’t say but what I’ve had to do in my life has helped me learn to appreciate what I have. Maybe I wouldn’t have appreciated things if I hadn’t grown up so hard.

“That’s what I want young people to know,” she added. “Maybe I can show them. I walked to work when I was 11 years old. I believe young people need to work and make their own money and not have to depend on anybody. At the end of the day, you can’t blame the kind of life you have on anybody else. It’s up to you.”

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One Door Closes, but Many More Open – For Business!

GOLDEN TRIANGLE – Courtesy of the Dispatch


Former employees Debbie Putt and Janis Kertsetter are now the new owners of The Purple Elephant on Wilkins Wise Road in Columbus. The shop had been closed briefly after the prior owner, Marca Glenn, retired.

“We hated to see another store close in Columbus,” Putt said. “We just felt like jumping in and doing it. Everything comes full circle.”

Putt went on to say that the shop will be the same as always, though they are open to carrying new and interesting items for their clientele to buy; also, they have retained the crew that worked under Ms. Glenn. The gift shop is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt, next to CJ’s in Columbus, has announced that they are closing their doors after being in business for six years.


Construction work has officially begun at Grand Junction condos, 509 University Drive. They are hoping to open Phase I for new homeowners in late August of this year. Tabor Development’s VP of development, Kay Regimbal, says that about one third of the condos have already been purchased.

The units vary in size from 1~3 bedrooms & 750~1,500 square feet, and in price from about $200,000 to $445,000.

MSU’s Colvard Student Union had a couple of changes quite recently:

State Fountain Bakery, which is now across the union, has penlty of goodies on offer just in time for Valentine’s Day. Mediterranean restaurant Olilo is now open in the student union.

Popular downtown yoga studio Firefly on S Lafayette St has shut its doors, and appears to be on the market.

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