Historic Century Market opening in Racine

Historic Century Market opening in Racine
The Historic Century Market will open Oct. 9 at 522 6th St. in downtown Racine. Donna Murphy and Jim Spodick of Racine are the owners and operators of the new food market.
The market will employ 20 to 25 people, including a full-time chef who will prepare seasonal and ethnic foods in the on-site kitchen. The store will have meats, produce, delicatessen items, ready-made meals, bakery goods and specialty cheeses. It will also have ethnic food ingredients, gift baskets, kitchenware, seasonal products# and demonstrations showing customers how to use those products, said Murphy.
The market will also have an electronic ordering capability, she added. “In the time it takes you to drive for fast food, you can serve your family a healthful, delicious meal,” she said.
The market building’s style is a mix of Art Deco and Prairie, Spodick said. The interior design retains the original tile and cement flooring, exposed metal beams, Cream City brick and wrought iron. A local artist painted murals on inside walls. A custom-made light fixture, eight feet in diameter and made of wrought iron and recycled automobile glass, hangs in the entrance mezzanine.
Spodick brings 13 years of experience in the grocery business and says he has a “passion for food from the farmer’s gate to the customer’s plate.”
“The Historic Century Market is the first specialty food market in the Racine area and will definitely fill a niche and demand,” Spodick said. “The closest models are the Sendiks in the Milwaukee area and Fox and Obel located in Chicago.”
Murphy joined the business after a 20-year insurance career.
Associated Bag adds Dallas site
Associated Bag Co., a Milwaukee-based national supplier of packaging products and shipping supplies, has expanded into the South with the opening of a new regional distribution center in Dallas in August.
The 133,000-square-foot facility, Associated Bag’s fourth distribution center, continues the company’s national growth strategy that included the opening of an East Coast facility near Harrisburg, Pa. in 2002. The company also has a branch in Reno-Sparks, Nev.
Herbert Rubenstein, Associated Bag president and CEO, said the new Dallas facility provides one-day service at standard ground rates on 6,000 items for customers in the South. “Our new Dallas center is a big, big plus for our customers,” he said. “We look forward to offering enhanced service to customers in this fast-growing region of the country.”
Associated Bag Co. (www.associatedbag.com.) offers a wide range of products including plastic bags, corrugated boxes, tape, Rubbermaid products, and shrink, bubble and foam packaging. Founded in 1938, the company has been a family-owned business for 65 years.
Managers buy Comforts of Home division
The Milwaukee area division of Comforts of Home (COH), a national distributor of decorative home items, has been purchased by four executives who will work on a growth plan with current owner Helen Aiken, and her existing staff, including Tim Aiken, Jackie Aiken and Joanne Gonzales.
New to the organization are Michael Blumenfeld, chief executive officer; Jean M. Thalman, president and marketing director; Eric Egenhoefer, chief financial officer; and Deborah Friedrich, chief operating officer and sales training recruiter.
“The addition of this highly experienced, talented team brings us into a new era at Comforts of Home,” said Aiken. “We have a terrific product line and enthusiastic sales directors and consultants, and now we have a fine group of diverse executives to help grow our product sales and create even more sales opportunities.”
Prior to joining Comforts of Home, Blumenfeld served as COH corporate attorney, and is the current CEO of Victory Steel Supply Co. In his new position, he will direct all COH operations.
Thalman co-owned and managed the former Tri-ad Communications Inc., a local advertising and marketing agency, for 12 years prior to selling the business in January 2002.
Egenhoefer will assist Blumenfeld in operations management and Web site development. Egenhoefer owns a local mortgage company and is involved with several area businesses.
Friederich will oversee sales training, recruiting and product development. She is currently an affiliate owner of Westaff, a professional staffing firm.
Established in Wisconsin in 1981, Comforts of Home (www.comfortsofhome.com.) is a national distributor of decorative home items sold by sales consultants and directors, through at-home shows and parties.
Gentile acquires Hyundai auto franchise
The Gentile Automotive Group has purchased the Hyundai franchise from Rosen and is now the exclusive Hyundai dealership in the Racine/Kenosha market. The Hyundai dealership will remain at its current location just east of I-94 on Highway 20, Racine.
“We’re excited and proud to have the Hyundai franchise,” said Ralph Gentile, president of Gentile Automotive Group. “It’s a great addition to our family of fine vehicles.”
Gentile sells Honda, Toyota, Subaru, Nissan, GMC Truck and Oldsmobile models in addition to pre-owned vehicles at its other location, five miles east of I-94 on Highway 20.
Gentile opened as an Oldsmobile dealership in 1969. It added Honda in 1977, GMC Truck in 1986, Toyota in 1995, Subaru in 1999 and Nissan in 2002.
StyLynn Baskets & Gifts opens in Tosa
StyLynn Baskets & Gifts LLC has opened at 7605 Harwood Ave. in the Wauwatosa village area. The store specializes in creatively designed gift baskets, including those for client appreciation, employee recognition, birthdays, wedding, new babies, holidays and other occasions. Gift baskets may be in-stock, custom, or assembled using customers’ handpicked choices.
Also offered are a variety of gourmet food items, kitchenware and specialty gift items. Entertainment-based themed areas include French café, Italian pasta, red-hot chili peppers, popcorn night, and fall/winter holiday.
This is the first retail venture for Lynn Raschka, owner of StyLynn Baskets & Gifts, who has marketed personalized baskets for the past year. Raschka, of West Allis, served as human resources supervisor for 10 years at the former Arthur Andersen firm before launching her business venture.
Riteway starts limo service
Riteway Bus Service of Germantown has launched Riteway Executive Sedan & Limousine Service for the Metropolitan Milwaukee area. The new service is available seven days per week around the clock, with reservations available through an online system at www.ritewaybus.com. “Our new sedan and limousine service is dedicated to our customers’ luxury, comfort and safety,” said Ronald Bast, president and owner of Riteway.
Customers can choose from six-, eight- or 10-passenger Lincoln Town Care L Series limousines.
The Bast family founded Riteway Bus Service in 1957 and now has nine Wisconsin locations.
Oct. 3, 2003 Small Business Times,Milwaukee

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