Blue Back Square Business Elmwood The Center

West Hartford Business Buzz: October 30, 2017

KT Bakery has added a two-chair small hair salon to its business at 552 New Park Ave. Photo credit: Ronni Newton

A round-up of openings, closings, and other news about West Hartford businesses.

By Ronni Newton

I’m writing this column on Oct. 29 – six years to the date after snow-mageddon (aka the “freak October snowstorm” or “Alfred”), and five years to the date after Hurricane/Tropical Storm Sandy. I have the Eversource outage map open on my computer, and while 3 percent of customers statewide were without power as of 10:45 p.m., thankfully there are no outages listed for West Hartford. Right now. My buddy and ace forecaster John Lyons doesn’t sound so optimistic about the chance of the town remaining unscathed by this latest storm, but I have my fingers crossed.

I just returned (very early Sunday morning) from three jam-packed days in Chicago at the 2017 LION Publishers Summit, and my head is still spinning – in a good way – from the experience. LION stands for “Local Independent Online News,” and it was great to share ideas with others who really understand what this crazy business is all about, and to have the opportunity to meet so many really smart people from all over the world (more than 200 attended the conference, including a dozen from Norway and someone from Sweden) and hear about their approaches and best practices. I’ve got lots of ideas for new initiatives that I would like to incorporate into We-Ha.com, so stay tuned!

One note before getting down to business involves pop-ups. I’ve gotten emails and Facebook messages from several people who have been getting annoying pop-ups (congratulating them that they have won something, or warnings that their phone has a virus), and some have even posted on social media that they believe these pop-ups are coming from the We-Ha.com site. I actually got one of the pop-ups on my own phone last week. It’s happened to me in the past as well, while on other websites.

We take the security and integrity of the We-Ha.com site very, very seriously, and as soon as I first heard about this being a suspected problem, I alerted our IT specialist. He did a complete scan of everything, and assured me (several times, because I kept asking if he was sure) that We-Ha.com is not the source of these pop-ups.

When I got a pop-up, I powered down my phone and the problem was gone when I turned it back on. We posted an article on Facebook from Clark.com, and here’s another, a very detailed article from MacSecurity with some tips for how to avoid the pop-up scam, and how to clear problem apps/scripts from your devices.

If you have tips about businesses opening or closing, or doing something worth sharing, please provide that information in the comments or email Ronni Newton at [email protected].

Here’s this week’s Buzz:

  • KT Bakery – which specializes in baked goods as well as sandwiches and other light fare (great reviews of the banh mi and the Pho they serve on the weekends) – opened in mid-June at 552 New Park Ave. The building was formerly a hair salon, and owner Kim Mai had transitioned from being a hair stylist to the owner of a bakery/restaurant. She said she’s now found a way to do both! Kelly Salon & Spa has been reincorporated into the KT Bakery space, with the space divided to allow for two chairs for the hairdressing business. Call 860-236-0389 for more information about either business, or follow the bakery or salon on Facebook.
  • Do you have your 2017 “We Care Card” yet to support Foodshare? This is the week to get your card, because the savings begin Thursday, Nov. 2 and last through Sunday, Nov. 12 at more than 50 businesses – retailers and restaurants –  in The Center and Blue Back Square. Click here for a list of participants that are offering discounts and other special offers. “We Care” helps those who are food insecure right here in Greater Hartford. Each $50 donation equates to 125 local meals, and Barbara Karsky of BK&Co, who is coordinating this effort, hopes to sell 300. The cards are available at all participating merchants, or can be purchased online by clicking here. And don’t miss the cool video at the end of the column!
  • Tom Hickey and I would love to share a cocktail and a cupcake with you! On Thursday, Nov. 2, from 4-7 p.m., we will be at Lux Bond & Green (46 LaSalle Rd. in West Hartford Center) where they will be having a “Cocktails & Cupcakes” ladies night out “featuring speciality cocktails, sweets, and gorgeous jewels.” Included will be this season’s new fall designs from Designers such as Marco Bicego, Tara Pearls, and Evocateur, as well as a trunk show of 
    We-Ha Vineyard Vines ties, polo shirts, Shep shirts, belts, and tote bags. A variety of HALO portable power devices will also be available. Bring your We Care Card for special discounts, and get a free West Hartford Magazine with your purchase!
  • Attention runners and walkers – the “not-your-ordinary-5K” is coming up this weekend! On Saturday, Nov. 4, as a way to commemorate Veteran’s Day, we are excited that West Hartford’s own Fleet Feet will help us build ‘Team We-Ha” for the APK Charities 5K Ruck Walk. This 5K is a “ruck walk” because participants are encouraged to fill backpacks with non-perishable food donations for the West Hartford Town That Cares Fund and carry them for the 3.1-mile distance. (Stephanie from Fleet Feet says its fine for runners not to carry their packs!) The APK Charities, which honors fallen soldier Andrew Pedersen-Keel, was established by Andrew’s parents to properly honor and remember the ultimate sacrifice made by their son and to raise awareness and support for our active, retired, wounded and fallen warriors and their families. All you need to do is register online at www.apk5k.org and collect food donations to bring on Saturday. See flyer below, which you may have received in the mail this past week, or go directly to the APK site to register. Regionally, Mohegan Sun has joined APK Charities as a sponsor and will provide space at the annual VET ROCK event on Friday, Nov. 3. Check out the details at Mohegan Sun as well.

    Lonesome Eddie & The Bird Dog at Sully’s Pub on Oct. 22. Courtesy photo

  • West Hartford-based band Lonesome Eddie & The Bird Dogs held a fundraiser on Sunday, Oct. 22 to raise money for Hurricane Maria victims in Puerto Rico. Band members donated their time and Sully’s Pub on Park Street in Hartford donated the venue. Approximately 300 people attended, and a total of $1,412 was raised to support the victims.
  • Congratulations to West Hartford resident and Robinson & Cole lawyer Stephen O. Clancy who has been recognized by the Connecticut Law Tribute as a “New Leader in the Law.” Clancy was honored at an awards dinner on Oct. 3 at The Bond Ballroom in Hartford. According to a news release, “this distinction spotlights lawyers under the age of 40 who have excelled in the courtroom, in client service and cultivation, in service to bar associations, and in performing pro bono work or community service in a volunteer capacity.”
  • The last vestige of summer has now vanished: Rita’s closed for the season on Sunday. We will let you know – gleefully – when they plan to reopen in the spring.
  • Finally, ICYMI, the latest on Los Imperios which received a one-day suspension of its liquor license last week. Click here for the full story.

Remember, if you have any business news to share, add it in the comments section below or email Ronni Newton at [email protected].

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