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food buggies to start rolling through cle streets (and buildings)

The Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI), a nonprofit micro-lender, and the Cleveland Culinary Launch and Kitchen (CCLK), a pay-as-you-go commercial kitchen, are making mobile food options more accessible to downtown diners with their new food buggy program. If all goes well, the first two buggies will hit office buildings at the end of February.

ECDI purchased two food buggies – smaller, more affordable and portable versions of their larger food truck counterparts. “They’re very cool looking,” says Eric Diamond, ECDI executive vice president for lending. “They have a full working kitchen with a cooktop and plumbing. The idea is you can get into buildings and it’s a lot cheaper than a food cart.”  
 
The two buggies initially will carry standard lunch items made by CCLK kitchen staff, such as soup, salad and sandwiches. Organizers are identifying buildings and areas that employ about 600 people to locate the buggies. The first two buggies will test the operation – sales, price points and location. Eventually CCLK plans to have 15 to 20 buggies operating throughout the city.
 
The two buggies will at first only carry food prepared by CCLK users, and the staff there is busy prepping food in the kitchen this week. Diamond says they want operators to eventually add their own creations to the mix and perhaps have cuisine themes for each day of the work week.
 
The operators, who lease the buggies from CCLK, will pay a percentage of their profits to CCLK, which in turn takes care of licensing and business training. The CCLK will also help find locations and execute contracts with those locations.
 
The CCLK will sell buggies and help with financing for those entrepreneurs who want to peddle only their own creations. “We would hope they would use CCLK as a prep kitchen and promote what’s going on in the kitchen,” says Diamond, adding that the buggies will feature some of the products turned out by CCLK chefs.
 
The buggies are not competition for Cleveland’s thriving food truck scene, says Diamond. They will sell lunches on the budget end – about $8 – and stay away from most truck events like Walnut Wednesday.

“There’s a market for both,” Diamond says. He adds that the buggies, in addition to going inside, can easily be hauled to suburban little league games or other more remote events. They attach easily to the back of a car, like a U-Haul trailer. “It’s an affordable option for people who want to get in the business but don’t want to spend the money on a food truck.”

Diamond says the program should create 25 jobs, including the operators and prep staff. “For us, it’s all about creating jobs, creating access to the market,” he says. “It’s a good living for someone.”

edwins restaurant plans dormitory-style housing for homeless workers

In just over a year since opening, Edwins Leadership and Restaurant Institute has trained almost 50 formerly convicted criminals, and another 30 at Grafton Correctional Institution, in the art of working at an upscale French restaurant. Now founder and CEO Brandon Chrostowski is taking leadership training a step further, making sure his students make their new starts on the right feet.

On February 23 Chrostowski will host NEXT, a six-course dinner fundraiser to build student housing. Chrostowski is working with the Cuyahoga Land Bank to buy an abandoned two-building parcel on Buckeye.  “The whole idea behind Next is to take things to the next level for Edwins students,” he says. “I had a vision to build dorms near the school. I thought it would be a bit later, but the needs of the students – some of them are in shelters, some of them are homeless – made it happen sooner.”
 
The plan to build the dorms began brewing in April last year. “In October I put it out there to people supporting Edwins and within one month I received $1 million in two checks for $500,000 each,” says Chrostowski.
 
Additional support wasn’t far behind. Six chefs from Cleveland and chefs from New York, Chicago and Los Angeles will come together to make a memorable dining experience at Edwins. “It’s a great group, anything we need they provide,” says Chrostowski.
 
Tickets for the event, which cost between $250 and $350 each, sold out in just three days. Chrostowski is still open to sponsorships for the project through. Call Edwins at (216) 921-3333 for more information about sponsorships.  “It’s going to be one big party to contribute to a good cause,” he says. “It’s not just about the money. It’s about community support.”
 
Chrostowski has phase-one designs for a 37-bed dorm. Students will pay $100 a month, which would be returned to them at the end of the program for a deposit on an apartment. The plan also calls for six individual units on the top floor for Edwins graduates who are having trouble finding housing. Their rent would contribute to operating costs.
 
Bialosky and Partners Architects helped with the design and Kirt Montack of Montack Realty helped guide Chrostowski through the operating costs of running the buildings. Jones Day helped with the legal work.
 
“This is one example of the community coming together, and Buckeye is a neighborhood I believe in,” Chrostowski says. “We’re talking about someone without a home who is struggling. We have to change that. It’s a very real problem and we have the power to change it.”
 
Phase two of Chrostowski’s plan includes a library, fitness center and a meat and fish shop where employees will butcher the meat for sale and for use at Edwins.

centerline biomedical reduces the risks in endovascular procedures

One out of 20 men over age 55 will experience a triple abdominal aortic aneurism (AAA) – an enlargement of the lower part of the aorta – and the risk doubles with every decade of the life. Traditionally, the aneurism is fixed through either open surgery or endovascular procedure. Both require lengthy hospital stays and recoveries. While the endovascular procedure is less invasive, it emits high doses of radiation – both to the patient and the surgical team -- in order for the surgeon to guide wires and devices to the proper places.
 
Now, with Cleveland Clinic Innovations’ 71st spinoff company, Centerline Biomedical, fixing an abdominal aortic aneurism is becoming less risky and far less radiation involved. Centerline is developing and commercializing a radiation-minimizing system for endovascular procedures based on the research from Cleveland Clinic’s Heart and Vascular Institute and the Lerner Research Institute.
 
Centerline’s surgical navigation provides the surgeon with a navigation tool, making the procedure more efficient and accurate.
 
“The technology uses a 3D image of the actual patient’s vasculature using sensors and guide wires,” explains Centerline CEO Brian Fuller. “It’s like a GPS system for the vasculature. It will show the patient’s vascular structure, rotate, move around, look up and down the vessel. It’s a more efficient procedure and it’s not radiation-based.”
 
The elimination of high doses of radiation is particularly innovative. “This is a way to perform surgery on the vascular system that is minimally invasive,” says Fuller. “The average AAA procedure has 15 times the radiation than a CAT scan, which has 30 times more radiation than an X–ray. It’s also really bad for the surgeon and staff.”
 
Matthew Eagleton, a surgeon with the Clinic’s Heart and Vascular Institute, heads Centerline’s medical advisory board, is pleased with the technology and its potential. “This technology excites me in that it is an adjunct to our current imaging systems and may allow for improved visualization of the vasculature, easier manipulation within that anatomy with three-dimensional pictures, and potentially will reduce the amount of fluoroscopy needed – thus reducing radiation exposure,” he explains. “It may allow for more complex procedures to be performed more easily.”
 
Fuller says Centerline expects to complete design by the end of the year and have a prototype to the FDA by the end of 2016. The technology is expected to hit commercial markets by mid-2017.

dca seeks city advocates to champion downtown improvement projects

Downtown Cleveland Alliance is looking for new members of its City Advocates Program, which is now entering its seventh year. Advocates work on civic-oriented projects and gain an insider’s perspective into downtown Cleveland as well as a chance to experience first-hand the forward momentum of Cleveland’s development.

“The City Advocates Program is considered to be a civic engagement program,” says Laura Wiegand, DCA director of development and community relations. “We want more downtown residents and employees to be involved in DCA.”

The advocacy program also provides networking opportunities with business and civic leaders. DCA offers a mentoring program with DCA board members to learn even more about the city. “It’s a chance to sit down for coffee and chat about anything they want.”

For the first time this year, DCA is releasing its list of projects advocates will work on. “City advocates always express intreest in projects closely related to DCA's mission,” says Wiegand. Applicants can list their top three project choices.

This year's advocates can get involved in organizing a plan to steward public art initiatives in DCA’s portfolio; strategizing and executing the year-round activation of the new downtown dog park at Settlers Landing; and researching and planning ways to encourage people to go to Public Square during the planned renovations.

DCA accepts about 15 advocates a year for two-year terms. Although advocates are limited to one term, DCA looks for other opportunities for people to get them involved in the city’s development after the term expires.

The deadline to apply for the DCA City Advocates Program is 5 p.m. Friday, February 6.

city of cleveland to kick off year of clean water with resource fair

As part of the Sustainable Cleveland 2019 plan, Mayor Frank Jackson and his Office of Sustainability, along with partner organizations, will kick off the Year of Clean Water this Friday, January 23rd from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Cleveland City Hall Rotunda. The event will feature local innovations, resources and organizations working to keep our water clean, as well as local food vendors.

Since 2011, the city has dedicated each year to a different sustainability issue. The Year of Clean Water focuses on the impact water and Lake Erie have on life and business in Cleveland. “We’re really hoping that during the Year of Clean Water people take action and get involved in their communities,” says sustainability chief Jenita McGowan. “We want people to understand the water richness we have here in Cleveland. We’re fortunate to be located this close to fresh water. But don’t take it for granted and don’t take advantage of it.”
 
The kickoff event is the first stop on the Clean Water Tour and Sweepstakes. Each event throughout the year will offer the chance to enter the sweepstakes for the grand prize of a two-night stay at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s Stanford House and six tickets on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad. “The more events you go to, the more chances you have to win the grand prize,” says McGowan.
 
The kickoff at City Hall is free and open to the public. “Whether you’re coming as a student, resident or from a business perspective,” there’s something to learn and take away from this event,” says McGowan. Painted rain barrels, created as part of the Painted Rain Barrel Project to keep surface pollution out of waterways, will be on display in the rotunda.
 
Education is a key component of the Year of Clean Water, and McGowan says it starts with keeping neighborhoods clean. Plastic beverage bottles are the number one pollution problem in the Great Lakes, followed by cigar tips. “Land litter makes its way into our waterways through the storm sewers,” explains McGowan. “Some of the best beach cleanups you can do are in your own yard.”

The second sweepstakes event on the tour is “Fire on the Water,” a series of original short plays at Cleveland Public Theatre. The world premiere of Fire on the Water is inspired by the burning of the Cuyahoga River and runs January 29th through February 14th.

techpint returns to cleveland, offering startups a chance to network, pitch and win

For the first time since April 2014, Paul McAvinchey is bringing TechPint back to Cleveland for an evening of networking, entrepreneurship and showcases at the Beachland Ballroom. “It will make an impression,” McAvinchey says of TechPint, which will be held this Thursday, January 22nd from 4:30 to 10 pm. “There are a lot of new people in town now, a whole new batch.”

TechPint Winter Jam, described as a pop-up tech conference with pints of beer, will feature all the usual popular events. McAvinchey has secured the entire Beachland space, beginning with a Demo Pit in the bar area. “People kind of tinker with startup products while having a beer,” he explains. reMesh will showcase its app that allows an individual to have a conversation with a group.

Dollop, formerly Prezto, will showcase its gifting app through free beer. “We’re giving a beer to gift to someone else,” says McAvinchey. “Hopefully it will encourage networking, but it’s a way to distribute beer as well.” There is still room in the Demo Pit for tech startups who want to showcase their products. Companies should contact McAvinchey to secure a table.
 
FlashStarts will host its second annual Pitcher Night with a chance for five entrepreneurs to win $2,000 in a quick pitch on stage in the ballroom. FlashStarts will accept applications through the end of today, Monday, January 19th.

Speakers on Thursday are Laura Bennett, co-founder of Embrace Pet Insurance, and Yuval Brisker, co-founder of TOA Technologies, which was recently acquired by Oracle.

Doors for TechPint Winter Jam open at 4:30 pm. Pitcher Night begins at 5 pm, and Bennett and Brisker will speak at 6 pm. Beer and food will be served at least until 10 p.m. Admission is $20. While almost sold out, there are still tickets available.

brew bus educates riders about the cle beer scene

Any beer lover in Cleveland is painfully aware that the growth of the craft brewery industry leaves little time to try all of the available options. Bob and Shelle Campbell solve that problem with the Cleveland Brew Bus – a 22-seat party bus that takes riders on tasting tours of Cleveland’s most popular breweries.
 
Started in June 2013 by the Campbells, the tasting tour takes riders on a five-hour tour of three local breweries. Each stop features three to four sample sized beers and the opportunity of order food. While on the bus, tour coordinator Leslie Basalla educates and entertains riders with brewery and beer facts.
 
“Every tour is a little different,” Basalla explains. “We have home brewers, craft brewers and people just along to have fun. We play to the varying levels of knowledge.”
 
Basalla, who is in the process of buying the business along with boyfriend Brian McCafferty from the Campbells, joined Brew Bus after serving as front of house manager for Market Garden Brewery. Basalla is a certified beer steward through the Master Brewers Association of the Americas.
 
There were about seven breweries on the tour list when Basalla joined the business in 2014, and that list has grown exponentially as Cleveland’s brewery scene has grown. “There are new breweries opening up constantly,” she says. “We’re adding one brewery about every two months. It’s a small community where everyone knows each other.” Recent additions include Platform Beer Co. and Brick and Barrel.
 
Tours are primarily in Cleveland and the suburbs, but the Brew Bus occasionally will travel to Akron and Lake County for tastings. Private tours are available as well, although Basalla recommends people call at least two months in advance from July through October to book a Saturday night. “Sundays are wide open,” says Basalla. “If you have at least 10 people and you want a tour, I’ll give you a tour any day of the week.”
 
Tickets for public tours can be purchased on the Cleveland Brew Bus website.

beaumont school's new stem addition brings modern-day science education to girls

Beaumont School, a Catholic school for girls in Cleveland Heights, unveiled its new STEM addition with a ribbon cutting on Monday, January 5th, re-emphasizing its commitment to science, technology, engineering and math and education with the $9.5 million building. “Our science facilities were over 50 years old,” says Beaumont president Sister Gretchen Rodenfels. “I graduated in 1965 and we were using the same science equipment today.”

The movement to improve STEM education for girls has been growing, and Rodenfels says Beaumont has proven in recent years that girls do excel in science and math. “Really, in the United States, students are not as prepared in science, technology, engineering and math as other developed countries,” says Rodenfels. "Now we have eight science rooms, four prep rooms and all new equipment. Each room is dedicated to a different area of the curriculum.”
 
In fact, Rodenfels says a STEM education provides well-rounded preparation for any field the students choose. “If you are strong in STEM skills, that can be transferred to any career – deductive reasoning, collaboration, problem solving.”
 
For the past two years, Beaumont students have participated in the Alliance for Working Together's (AWT) annual RoboBot Competition. “The first year we had the only all-girls team and the guys were making wisecracks,” says Rodenfels. “The following year we came in third at nationals.”

Additionally, the new wing has administration and guidance offices, a clinic, a two-story student common area with outdoor patio and a new front entrance. Construction began on the 25,000 square-foot building in September 2013.

locally-produced documentary tells stories of holocaust survivors

Natalie Bauman, founder of Sunrise Sunset Documentaries and the Digital Mosaic, an iPad app that allows people to record their memories and life stories, has produced a documentary chronicling the experiences of four Holocaust survivors living in Cleveland.
 
The Remembering Project, which was made with a grant from the Saltzman Youth Panel of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland, brought on board four area high school students to help with the production and learn first-hand about the Holocaust. The film will premiere Tuesday at Montefiore Home.
 
The piece tells the survival stories of Irene Weiner, Roni Berenson, Michael Pupa and Alex Zelczer. “This is a piece of history; this matters,” says Bauman. “This is not your everyday work project – these are moments in someone’s life. They chose to dredge it up and speak about it to teach others.”
 
Weiner, who lives at Montefiore with her husband, Marvin, suffers from Alzheimer’s disease.  Irene came to the United States as a teenager, but with the help of Marvin tells her story because she doesn’t want the personal horrors of the Holocaust to be forgotten.
 
“People should know what they did,” Weiner says. “I was lucky I survived because I was young.”
 
Sarah Axner, a social worker at Montefiore, says the experience has been good for the Weiners and other residents. “As an aging services agency guided by Jewish values we recognize the importance of speaking about their experiences,” she says. “Hopefully there is therapeutic value in it and will encourage other survivors to speak out.”
 
The Remembering Project will debut Tuesday, January 13 at 7pm at Montefiore’s Maltz Auditorium. Admission is free.
 
The documentary will also be available online and through Montefiore’s YouTube channel. Organizations and schools can contact Melissa Adell about obtaining a copy of The Remembering Project. A study guide created by Daniel Weiss, Judaic Studies teacher at Gross Schechter Day School, is available as well.

got an idea for improving northeast ohio? new civic pitch competition invites submissions

The Cleveland Leadership Center, along with Bernie Moreno’s Collection Auto Group, are asking individuals to pitch their best ideas for civic improvement – no matter how wild an idea.

The civic pitch completion, Accelerate 2015: A New Model for Change is designed to solicit ideas that can be one-and-done projects or sustainable, ongoing efforts that make Northeast Ohio a better place.
 
“We came up with the idea 18 months ago, thinking about the opportunities in Cleveland for the business sector and entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas,” recalls Marianne Crosley, president and CEO of the CLC. “But there really isn’t a way for people with civic visions to pitch. What better way to impact and transform Cleveland than to open things up to the public to pitch their ideas and make a difference in the community?”
 
Pitches will be accepted in five categories: quality of life; economic development; educating for tomorrow; community change; and transformative arts and culture. “We’re open to anything, from how do you transform a street corner or empty lot to how do you impact youth,” says Crosley. "There’s nothing traditional about this event.”
 
The only parameters are the presenters must be individuals and the pitches must be civic-minded. No organized groups or businesses will be heard.
 
Panels of judges will select a winning pitch in each category, and those category winners will pitch to a larger audience. The audience will then vote on an overall winner. The the four finalists each receive $1,500 and the winning pitch receives $3,000.  All winners will receive mentorship and an opportunity for community support.
 
ThomaMoreno is co-chairing the event along with Thomas E. Hopkins, CLC board chair and senior vice president of Sherwin-Williams, to celebrate Collection Auto Group’s 10th anniversary and as a way of saying thanks for their success and growth in Cleveland.
 
The deadline to apply is Monday, January 12. The competition will be held on Wednesday, February 25. Pitches begin at 4:30pm, followed by the audience judging and reception at 6pm at the Global Center for Health Innovation. Tickets are $35 for the general public, $25 for CLC Partners, and $20 for students. 
 

who's hiring in cle: park place technologies, cuyahoga arts and culture and more

Welcome to the latest installment of Fresh Water’s “who’s hiring” series. Twice a month we feature growing companies with open positions, what they’re looking for and how to apply.
 
Park Place Technologies
Park Place Technologies has been keeping their clients’ data centers running smoothly since 1991. The IT services organization specializes in post-warranty hardware maintenance. Park Place has a fleet of technicians around the country that can be on-site to service a machine within four to 20 hours.
 
“We can service any type of organization’s needs,” boasts Dan Gleeson, a senior recruiter with Park Place. “We began as a computer hardware reseller, then the founders saw a hole in the market and we jumped to the service side of things.”
 
Park Place has seen explosive growth in the last six years with 25 percent yearly growth for over five years now.  The company hired more than 90 people last year, for a total of 330 nationwide and in Canada and the United Kingdom. About 140 Park Place employees are based in the Mayfield Heights headquarters.
 
The company is now planning to top its 2014 hiring record by adding more than 100 more people in 2015. At least 60 of the positions  will be in Cleveland, including a training class of 20 new business development associates staring in February. 
 
For a full listing of the current open jobs and to find out more information, go to Park Place’s careers page.
 
Cuyahoga Arts and Culture
Cuyahoga Arts and Culture is filling the newly-created position of associate for communications and grant programs. The organization needs a creative, energetic and detail-oriented person to work across functions to efficiently and proactively provide support to all members of the CAC team and serve CAC’s cultural partners. The associate reports to the deputy director and will work closely with the grant managers and communications manager to improve systems, streamline workflow and implement key projects in these areas.
 
For more information, click here. Or send resume, cover letter and salary requirements to the hiring manager by January 30.
 
Great Lakes Neurotechnologies
Great Lakes Neurotechnologies, manufacturer of a line of bioinstrumentation products for research and clinical needs, is hiring a junior software engineer and a biomedical engineer. Send resume and cover letter to the recruiter.
 
Breakthrough Schools, Bike Cleveland and more
Breakthrough Schools, Cleveland’s highest rated free public charter network schools, is currently recruiting teachers, leaders, and operations staff.  The organization currently has 28 openings in its network of seven campuses. To see the positions, click here, then start the application process.
 
Bike Cleveland is looking for a communications and membership manager to develop and lead a comprehensive communication plan for our growing organization and manage a membership program to maximize member recruitment opportunities and engage current members to maximize their retention. Send resume, cover letter and writing sample to the hiring manager.
.
The Regional Information Technology Engagement (RITE) Board needs a part-time program coordinator for its Get I.T. Here! programs and the RITE central office. See the full job description for more information. To apply, send resume and cover letter to the hiring manager.
 
Esperanza, Inc., the region’s only organization dedicated to the educational needs of Cleveland’s Hispanic community, needs a development director and a part-time mentoring program specialist. Send resume and cover letter to executive director Victor A. Ruiz for the development director positon; and to programs director Jesus Sanchez for the mentoring position.
 
BlueBridge Networks, a regional leader in data storage, with data center services, cloud computing and infrastructure solutions across its networks, has several technical positions open: a network administrator ; a systems engineer; and a data center sales engineer. To apply send resume and cover letter to the hiring manager.
 
The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum has a variety of open positions, including a library collections coordinator to manage the acquisition of all library and some archival resources; handle the paperwork for all donations to the library and archives; and manage the inventory and physical space for all library collections. For more information about any of the open positions, contact human resources.
 
The Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization is looking for a Gordon Square Farmers Market  manager for the 2015 season to oversee all aspects of market operations during the season as well as pre and post-season administrative duties. See the full details here. To apply, send cover letter and resume to John Hausman, director of community involvement.

cosmic bobbins focuses on social impact while selling local

When Sharie Renee opened Cosmic Bobbins in Shaker Square two years ago, she intended it to be a simple pop-up shop to sell her works and some gifts made by local artisans. Today, the shop is not only a source to find some of Cleveland’s finest local hand-crafted works, it sells fair-trade items from around the world and has become a leader in social and community empowerment through art.

“We started as a pop-up shop with 15 to 20 vendors at first,” recalls Renee. “In our two years [at the Square], we now represent over 50 local artists as well as fair-trade artists. We’ve definitely expanded in capacity.”
 
Renee is now focused on local collaborations to create new products in her store. In a partnership with Jakprints, the two companies have created an upcycling initiative and are working on a couple of new Cleveland apparel ideas. “This year we began deconstructing and repurposing misprinted apparel for Jakprints,” explains Renee. “Our collaborative teams developed a line of clothing for Cosmic Bobbins which will be available this week.”

In November, Cosmic Bobbins began a partnership with Classy Little Fashions Foundation, which helps disabled people with non-standard body types find fashionable clothing. Renee will be manufacturing clothing for the organization’s clients, as well as teaching private sewing lessons.

Tremont artist Paul Duda’s Cleveland photography will soon be featured on silk scarves. The collaboratives can only help the artisan community thrive, says Renee. “We want to see what else is possible. We have to be a little more innovative to dream up new ideas.”
 
Renee spent her first year converting the basement of her shop into a workroom and classroom. She and fellow artists teach classes. Last summer she taught groups of area high school students how to sew and sell what they made through a partnership with Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.).
 
“These are youth who want to go into the fashion industry or be entrepreneurs,” explains Renee. “They learned how to sew, made products and sold them. We also donated a lot of the products to school supply drives.”
 
With a company credo of giving back to the community, creating jobs in underserved populations through arts-based entrepreneurship, sewing education and outreach, Renee employed seven of her students last summer through the Buckeye Shaker Square Development Corporation and a grant from Neighborhood Connections. She plans to run the same program next summer, with returning students acting as teachers.
 
Renee’s community outreach work earned her a spot in the latest SEA Change (Social Enterprise Accelerator) class, a collaborative social enterprise accelerator that provides coaching, connections and capital to companies trying to make positive changes in their communities.

hema imaging's thermal imager for homeowners will be produced locally

Professional contractors and tradespeople use thermal imaging devices to detect potential problems behind walls and in equipment on a regular basis. The temperature mapping allows them to find issues such as water damage, electrical malfunctions and energy leaks.
 
It’s a gadget the weekend home improvement warrior would love to have. The problem is that thermal imagers are too pricey for the typical homeowner.
 
Now, Hema Imaging has developed an affordable thermal imager for the homeowner’s tool box. “It’s a device we think solves a lot of problems,” says founder Erik Beall. “It’s a pretty general purpose, value-added diagnostic tool.’
 
Beall developed the HemaImager when his first daughter was born more than two years ago. He became paranoid she was going to develop SIDS and became obsessed with taking her temperature. Temperature mapping turned into a hobby of sorts, and the MRI physicist created the HemaImager.
 
Hema Imaging’s first version of its HemaImager used a smart phone to map different problems. After an unsuccessful Kickstarter campaign last summer, Beall re-thought the device and made it a self-sustaining computer model. “You can track temperature changes by its face,” he explains. “We have 20 different scripts that are easy to modify. Everything is incorporated into one device.” And updates are as easy as finding a USB port.
 
Many of the imager’s components will be manufactured in Cleveland. After looking into manufacturing costs in China, Beall found it was actually cheaper to go local. “Going overseas, you have to go through a middle man and there are time delays,” says Beall. “Locally, there are a number of people here who make sense. There are several injection molders and several manufacturers of electronic circuit boards and they are all very, very competent.”
 
In addition to the cost savings, Beall says it made sense to keep manufacturing local. “Northeast Ohio is a good environment for finding people and finding sources for people who make these components,” he says. “We’re committed to staying in the Cleveland area for as much as we can do.”
 
Beall will be showcasing his imager at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas January at CWRU’s Blackstone Launchpad and the Burton D. Morgan Foundation booth. At the same time he will be re-launching a Kickstarter campaign with his new model. Last time he raised $156,000, short of his $205,000 goal. This time his goal is to raise $100,000.

the etsy hotlist: five cle makers to shop for handmade gifts

While some folks enjoy the hustle and bustle of hitting the craft marts, trunk shows and boutiques this time of year, others prefer to shop online.
 
Turns out there's a way to have your artisan cake and eat it, too. Etsy lists hundreds of Cleveland artisans’ wares for sale. It’s an easy way to surf for that local special gift and avoid holiday schlepping.

Here’s a list of our top five favorite artists on Etsy.
 
KoolPlatez 
Three years ago Brooke Theriot bought a handbag made of recycled license plates. It was the inspiration to start KoolPlatez, which makes signs, key rings, jewelry and other unique art from old license plates.
 
“We had a bunch of license plates in our garage from all of the places we used to live,” says Todd Theriot. “We love the fact that we’re recycling and repurposing and not putting these in a landfill.”
 
The Theriots find their plates from every state in the country online, from antique stores and, more often now, their customers.

KoolPlatez has a selection of their work on Etsy, and also offers custom-made signs through the site. The Theriots can do two-letter signs, up to 50 letters and up to three tiers.
 
BreckWorks
Carol Breckenridge has been an artist for her entire life. After a 20-year career as an art therapist, she decided to devote her time to creating original ink drawings, acrylic seascapes inspired from her many trips to the outer banks of North Carolina, and line/ink animal drawings for children.
 
Breckenridge’s ink drawings of Cleveland’s many bridges have been popular among former Clevelanders. “I’ve sold them to people who have moved away from Cleveland and they have a nostalgic remembrance of the bridges here,” she says.
 
Her custom house drawings are also a popular nostalgic gift. “The house drawings are popular when people move in or move out of a much-loved house,” Breckenridge muses. Her depiction of a mama giraffe nuzzling her baby can make any parent’s heart melt. She personally gives the animal drawings out as new baby gifts, with the child’s name and birthday.
 
And, Breckenridge points out, all of her works for sale on Etsy are reprints so they’re affordable.
 
Jewelry by Jenny (JenScoobySnacks)
In Cleveland, Jenny Bendis Goe’s customers love her glass charm necklaces, key rings and Scrabble tile accessories that depict their hometown. “We’re so heavy into our identity here, even in the suburbs,” she says. “Even in Lorain or Westlake, people want art with 216 on it.”
 
Elsewhere in the world Goe’s customers go for her darker side – necklaces fashioned after famous horror movies. “They’re a little more quirky. Horror is big. Three of the last five orders I had were horror necklaces.” Goe recently had a customer in France order one charm necklace based on “The Blob” and one based on “Candyman.”
 
Currently, Goe is seeing a lot of interest in her necklaces that offer a tribute to “A Christmas Story,” featuring the famous leg lamp and phrases like “You’ll shoot your eye out.” She also takes custom orders – recently creating a necklace for a customer who wanted a Robin Williams tribute.
 
Erika Originals
Erika Laine Hansen started making jewelry five years ago when her two science degrees weren’t helping her find a job. Her creations feature handmade glass beads, old maps and dictionary print and resin. “I preserve vintage settings under resin,” Hansen explains. “The maps represent someplace special they’ve lived or vacationed. The word means something special.”
 
Hansen finds the materials for her works at antique shows, library book sales and estate sales. “If it doesn’t get purchased, it is going to get recycled,” says Hansen of her finds. “I save them from the recycling bin and repurpose them for something else.”
 
Hansen also makes a menswear line of tie clips, belt buckles and cufflinks. She also just opened a shop in Lakewood, The Modern Bohemian, featuring artists from Ohio.
 
DonnaMarchettiDesign
Six years ago, Donna Marchetti started taking art classes at the Cleveland Museum of Art for fun. Then one day she stumbled into a one-day workshop on silk painting and fell in love with the art. “It was instant passion,” she says.

So Marchetti quit her job as a journalist and co-owner of a small magazine and devoted herself full-time to creating hand-painted silk scarves. The colorful scarves are each unique, some are embellished with paint and markers.
 
Marchetti’s Etsy shop did so well, she recently moved her studio out of her house and into space at the 5th Street Arcades.

prestofresh grocery doubles sales in first year, brings on wellness expert

Just after marking its one-year anniversary in business, PrestoFresh Grocery, which delivers groceries out of Zagara’s Marketplace in Cleveland Heights to all of Cuyahoga County and parts of Lorain, Lake, Summit and Portage Counties, has doubled its business and is expanding again.

Founder Steve DeMoulpied says that sales have grown by 115 percent during the first year. He has 15 employees – eight on staff and seven contractors – and is currently hiring order preppers, pickers, packers and drivers.

Now PrestoFresh is expanding its services to include wellness and nutrition expert Amy Jamieson-Petonic, AKA Amy J.

Amy J. will write a free monthly blog for all PrestoFresh newsletter registrants. Amy J. looks for foods that keep her clients energized and healthy throughout the year and she even adds humor and science to her blogs. This month’s topic is “Top 5 Foods for Health & Happiness This Holiday Season.”
 
DeMoulpied has a background in health and wellness and he knew when he started PrestoFresh that he wanted to incorporate that component into his services. “We thought we could do more than just deliver groceries,” he says. “We thought we could be a foundation for other things. We make it easier for people to access high quality foods. The first little step in that direction is to think about what else we can do from a health and wellness standpoint.” The link will be in PrestoFresh’s bi-weekly newsletter.
 
Amy J. will offer her wellness consulting from her website, making it easier for PrestoFresh customers to find and select the products that make the most sense for their personal nutrition goals.
 
PrestoFresh and Amy J. are also cross-promoting each other. PrestoFresh customers can use their rewards points for a free 30-minute consultation with Amy J., while customers who sign up for two months of coaching with Amy J. will receive free delivery during that period.
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