Top photo: American Legion Beaufort Post 9 is striving to promote both patriotism and businesses in the Beaufort area by calling attention to those that proudly display the U.S. flag at their location. Post 9 presents those enterprises with a framed certificate thanking them. Here, Jay Taylor and his staff at Kinghorn Insurance accept a certificate from Post Commander Chuck Lurey.
Beaufort Commerce Park earns kudos from state
Beaufort’s 161-acre Commerce Park near Marine Corps Air Station earned recognition as a “Palmetto Site” and gains exposure to companies seeking to relocate.
Through a partnership with the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce, the city of Beaufort completed the application and data submission during the summer. A report from the S.C. Department of Commerce’s consultants outlines the Beaufort Commerce Park’s strengths, weaknesses and challenges.
“This state-level program accomplishes two things for us,” said Stephen Murray, the Beaufort City councilman who spearheaded Beaufort’s participation in the project.
“First, it helps identify areas where we can improve the marketability of the Beaufort Commerce Park. Just as important, it provides our Commerce Park’s data and specifications to the State Commerce Department so they have updated information for when they meet with industries,” he said.
The Beaufort Commerce Park can be used to satisfy the needs of companies looking to relocate to Northern Beaufort County.
“We owe a big thanks to Jason Ruhf and the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce for helping put together our application,” Murray said. “It was a team effort and we hope it will produce results across northern Beaufort County as we grow our economy.”
The Palmetto Sites Program emphasizes the importance of the data-gathering step in site selection to make properties more competitive for projects. Participants answer extensive questions and provide details that explain the property’s availability, zoning, developability, transportation and utilities, said Sarah White, a senior consultant with McCallum Sweeney Consulting in Greenville.
Business expo to be held Sept. 22
The Beaufort Local First Business Expo will take place from noon to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, at the Beaufort Holiday Inn & Suites at 2225 Boundary St.
The expo is open to everyone and will showcase local products, services and businesses.
Bluffton hardware store named cool place
Heuser Ace Hardware in Bluffton has been named a 2016 “Coolest Hardware Store” by the Ace Hardware Corp.
Ace Hardware, the world’s largest hardware cooperative, selects only a handful of Ace stores annually to receive recognition – all based on how each Ace store differentiates its product offerings, services and culture to meet the needs of the community.
Heuser Ace Hardware’s 12,000-square-foot store “evokes a classic Main Street vibe,” according to a release.
In addition to hardware, the store also sells bicycles that are made in the U.S. and appeals to the community’s active lifestyle – both for young families and local retirees.
Heuser Ace Hardware also offers a wide selection of plants and bird feeders, and has an expert with a PhD in horticulture and two master gardeners on staff.
Staffing and training are extremely important to the management team at Heuser Ace Hardware, so much so that in addition to the knowledgable horticulturists on staff, they also hired a master electrician and master plumber.
The Heuser family and team are also passionate about giving back, and frequently sponsor community events, like the Tiger Bass Race.
In addition, Heuser Ace Hardware has been named a designated disaster command center by local law enforcement – the store was built to withstand hurricane-force winds.
“The team at Heuser Ace Hardware is proud to be named a 2016 ‘Coolest Hardware Store’,” said Bobby Heuser, co-owner of Heuser Ace Hardware. “It is our privilege to be able to serve the Bluffton community with not only the products our customers need to take care of their homes, but also unexpected finds and the best, most talented team in the business.”
God’s Goods Thrift to hold ribbon-cutting
A ribbon-cutting will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 9, to celebrate God’s Goods Thrift Store’s new location in Bluffton.
The store is moving to its new permanent home at The Church of the Cross – Mission Mall located at 15 Centre Drive in Centre Plaza (home to Golden Corral/Mattress Firm/Wild Wings and other businesses).
God’s Goods Thrift Store is an outreach ministry of The Church of the Cross and is 100 percent staffed by volunteers. All proceeds are given to local, national and international mission work. God’s Goods opened in July 2010 at 53 Persimmon St. in Bluffton.
For more information, visit www.godsgoods.org.
LIBPA sponsors sales tax forum
The Lady’s Island Business and Professional Association will sponsor an informational forum on the 1 percent Education Sales Tax at its Tuesday, Sept. 13, meeting.
The meeting will be held at 8 a.m. in the Beaufort Realtor’s Association headquarters located in the Palmetto Business Park on Lady’s Island Drive (behind the BB&T Bank).
The meeting is open to the public.
On the November general election ballot, Beaufort County voters will be requested to consider a 1 percent sales tax for the purpose of funding a variety of capital improvements for the Beaufort County School District.
These include maintenance and improvement of the infrastructure of existing schools, additions for some of the existing schools and construction of new schools.
This tax is proposed to remain in effect for 10 years and collect an estimated $313 million.
In an effort to provide a balanced viewpoint for the voters to better evaluate both the positive and negative aspects of the proposed tax, a representative from the school district will present information about the proposed tax and a representative of Citizens Advocating Responsible Education (CARE) will present an overview of their concerns regarding the tax.
Vacation Company hires new sales director
Dru Brown has joined The Vacation Company, a short-term rental and property management firm with over 18 years of experience managing more than 250 quality villas and custom homes on Hilton Head Island.
He has worked for short-term rental companies on Hilton Head Island for over 13 years, most recently serving as the business development manager for Beach Properties of Hilton Head.
Brown specializes in account acquisition and outside sales, marketing, strategic planning and budgeting, operations management, account retention and relationship management, as well as investment portfolio analysis.
Weichert welcomes addition to team
Kelly Ruhlin has joined Weichert Realtors sales team.
She has lived on Hilton Head Island for 25 years, and has taken part in a wide variety of local charitable organizations and events.
She is a member of the Hilton Head Area Association of Realtors and can be reached at 843-301-5919.
Westin hires director of group sales
Ryan Thompson has joined the sales team as director of group sales at The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa.
Thompson started his career as a management trainee at The Westin Savannah Harbor in Savannah. He later joined the sales teams of prominent Hilton Head organizations: The Westin Hilton Head Island Resort & Spa, The Heritage Collection, and the Sonesta Resort. Most recently, he led sales efforts was at Turberry Isles Miami before he returned to the Lowcountry.
As director of group sales, Thompson is responsible for total revenue and yield strategies, implementation and results of group room revenue, group food and beverage, and meeting-room production goals.