Category Archives: Business

Steve Burkharts Smokers and Grills from coach to retailer

“Opening a retail business was not in my retirement plans” 

Photo and article by Richard Lieberman

Steve Burkharts Smokers and Grills is one of Ventura’s newest businesses. Open for business since last August Burkharts journey to retail sales is a long way from where he came. Their products are high end smokers and grills manufactured by Green Mountain Grill Company powered by pellets of varying flavors

Burkhart originally from Chicago is a retired teacher/coach at Moorpark College where he coached men’s and women’s volley ball. After spending 24 years at the college Burkhart retired last May. “Opening a retail business was not in my retirement plans” said Burkhart. While on vacation Burkhart an avid barbecue cook met another with as much an avid interest in barbecue as him. They began to talk, and Burkhart learned about Green Mountain BBQ’s/smokers. He became excited at the possibility of an opportunity to do something far different than his original vocation.

Contacting the Green Mountain Company to see if he could find an opportunity selling their products. One of Green Mountains conditions to becoming a dealer was that he have a retail space to show Green Mountain grills and smokers. Burkhart now needed a retail space to even get started. A longtime friend who owns a catering company in Ventura Scooter Catering offered Burkhart some space at their location 2646 Palma Suite 200 in Ventura. Here is available to the public an opportunity to view and discover Green Mountain grills.

Burkhart has also placed a smoker in the Main Street Market in Ventura where the public can see and taste the difference that these grills/smokers make in cooking meats.

The company has also catered a surfer beach event “where I cooked for 45-50 people” added Burkhart showing off the superior nature of his products.

“It isn’t like I need to do this, I am comfortable in my retirement, but I just love to grill, and these grills changed my thinking what Barbecue is all about” Burkhart added. “I love this so much it is just like a hobby to me” he said.

Burkhart is planning some marketing opportunities in the city. He intends to have space at many of Ventura’s regular events, and is even thinking about space at the fair next year. His first marketing idea was to advertise in the Ventura Breeze. “The Breeze is very interesting to me” said Burkhart.

The Pellets that are used for these unique smokers will be a big part of the business, and he carries four different types of pellets each giving a unique taste to cooked meats.

We at the Breeze welcome this new business to the community. Demonstrations and smoker views are available by appointment and you can give Steve a call at 258-1781.


The many benefits of Traditional Thai Massage

Glass studied at 15 different schools of natural medicine.

Greg Ryan Glass, LMT, is a licensed massage therapist, here in Ventura, with nearly two decades of experience in naturopathic health care. Glass studied at 15 different schools of natural medicine and the focus of his private practice is in Traditional Thai Massage.

Thai Massage (known as Nuad Phaen Boran in Thailand) is a therapeutic form of bodywork and yoga therapy that is a part of Traditional Thai Medicine that was developed over thousands of years ago. Credit is given to an Ayurvedic doctor named Jivaka Kumar Bhacca (who is believed to have been the Buddha’s physician). Dr. Jivaka is revered in Thailand as the “father of medicine” and therapists in Thailand offer prayers to Dr. Jivaka before starting any massage sessions.

Glass spent several months in Thailand receiving one-on-one training under several world-renowned teachers of Thai massage. As an Ayurvedic naturopath, Glass focuses on comprehensive wellness, working to heal the mind, body and spirit. He personalizes programs to fit each individual’s needs.

“Through all of my years of research and experience, I’ve found that every individual’s journey to health is unique,” said Glass. “Regardless of who they are –– their age, body type or flexibility –– my goal is to have them leave here feeling better than they came.”

Thai massage is truly an art and Thai massage therapists understand that the flowing transitions between positions and the state of mind of the therapist are as important as the techniques themselves.  Thai massage is a deep, focused and meditative full body treatment.  Also known as Thai-Yoga Massage, it includes therapeutic stretching, rhythmic deep tissue compression (using mostly palms, forearms, knees and feet) and acupressure. It is often called “lazy man’s yoga” because the client is passive and completely supported in all positions by the therapist.

Thai Massage is done in 4 positions (supine, prone, side and seated) and fully clothed on a traditional Thai floor mattress.   Usually the session starts with the client on their back (supine) with the practitioner starting at the feet, and spending a lot of time working on the clients legs and hips. Working with the legs, Thai therapists bring proper alignment and flexibility to the hip area, and indirectly to the spine.  The condition of the spine is so crucial for ones health.  In the west it is seen as the home of the central nervous system and in the Thai and Ayurvedic traditions it is the home of Sushumna Nadi and the 7 Chakras.

The most important aspect of Thai massage, is promoting the smooth flow of life force energy (known as prana or qi) through the 10 major energy channels known as the Sen Sib.  As your muscles are massaged and stretched, this life force energy can flow freely where it was once stagnant or blocked.  Holding tension in our bodies caused by physical and emotional stress constricts Prana.

The body, mind and emotions are all connected and affect one another.  This is the essence of Thai Massage. These ten life energy paths (lines) are the heart of Thai massage and the basis of therapeutic Thai massage throughout the history of Thailand.

Sessions usually last 90 minutes to 3 hours and can be a profoundly relaxing and transformative experience for the client.  Thai massage can help with stress, pain, range of motion limitations, poor circulation, respiratory problems, sleep issues, anxiety, immune system problems and adrenal burnout.

Traditional Thai Massage sessions are available in Ventura and done by Greg Ryan Glass, LMT at A Place of Peace Wellness Center on Sperry Ave. (831)331-7759,

Sailor & Friends Pet Supply have Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting

Sailor & Friends Pet Supply had their official Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting on Saturday, November 4th. Owner, Marnie Bond-Harrison, many furry and human friends, family, Chamber Members, and community supporters, joined her for this special occasion. This was also a fundraiser for CARL(The Canine Adoption & Rescue League).

Sailor & Friends Pet Supply got its name from Marnie’s own dog, Sailor and his sidekick, Skipper- hence “Friends”! She just opened in August of this year and is passionate about providing the community and her own fur family with healthy, natural and raw pet foods and treats. Sailor & Friends is a family friendly, organic pet supply store that caters to the individual needs of our furry friends.

Store hours are Monday through Friday, 9:30am-6:30pm and Saturday 10:00am-6:00pm (closed Sundays) and is located at 142 N. Ashwood Ave., in Ventura. 642-8555.

805 Gift Emporium

805 Gift Emporium had their official Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting on Thursday, October 12th. Owner Nancy Farrar, her dedicated staff, many friends, Chamber Members, and community supporters including Stephanie Caldwell President & CEO Ventura Chamber and Councilmember’s Christy Weir and Mike Tracy joined her for this special occasion. Mike Tracy welcomed her on behalf of the City council.

805 Gift Emporium is your one stop gift shop! They specialize in unique gifts and decor, fun accessories and more for every day, all holidays and occasions. They even carry clothes for you, your babies and fur babies too!

805 Gift Emporium hours are Monday through Saturday, 9am – 6pm, (closed Sundays) and is located at 3875 Telegraph Rd., Suite A. 658-0805.

Urban will be fostering community relations

Lysa Urban joins local firm after working for the City of Ventura.

Consortium Media + Public Relations is pleased to announce that Lysa Urban has joined the Consortium Media team as a Public Relations Correspondent. In this role, Urban will be fostering community relations and facilitating public relations campaigns from strategy to implementation.

Urban comes to Consortium with ten years of experience at the City of Ventura, most recently as the City’s Public Information Officer (PIO). During her tenure with the City of Ventura, Urban worked with the city’s executive team handling media relations and public outreach, as well as performing key PIO duties during emergency operations center activations. Urban has a background in advertising, communications and public relations, and has worked with Fortune 500 companies to develop and execute marketing campaigns through non-traditional media.

A graduate of UC Santa Barbara, Urban lives in Ventura and enjoys volunteering at FOOD Share, Project Understanding and other local non-profits as well as participating on the Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) Community Advisory Council.

“Lysa Urban is a very inspiring person to have join our team. Her highly regarded professional background helps her easily fit into our Consortium Media client success culture” says Denise Bean-White, Consortium Media President and CEO.

For more information, please contact Denise Bean-White at 654-1654 ext.111, email or visit the Consortium Media + Public Relations website at

Women’s Economic Ventures honors Award Winners at fundraiser

Lynda Nahra, 2017 Trailblazer; Kathy Odell, WEV Board President; Marsha Bailey, WEV Founder and CEO honored by WEV. Photo by Theresa Gingras/Theresa Gingras Photography

Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) welcomed close to 400 guests and raised more than $400,000 at their Empowerment is Priceless event held on October 10th at the Fess Parker Hotel in Santa Barbara. The non-profit’s annual breakfast fundraiser recognized WEV’s 2017 Trailblazer, Business of the Year and Volunteer of the Year award winners.

Each year WEV presents the Trailblazer Award to a woman who is a pioneer in her industry. This year, WEV honored Lynda Nahra, the first female bank president in Santa Barbara and the current President of the Central Coast Region of Pacific Western Bank.

WEV’s Business of the Year award honors a business owner who represents the clients the organization serves and recognizes the unique and inspiring nature of a business. Business of the Year award went to Claudia Cordova Papa, owner of Aqua Skin & Nail Care, a dedicated client who has utilized the WEV loan program and Thrive-in-Five business consulting.

WEV honored Hudson Institute of Coaching as Volunteer of the Year for their commitment and service to WEV. For more than 10 years Hudson has provided entrepreneurial coaching to push WEV clients to work at their peak capacity.

“Women’s business ownership is about freedom and options, security — and human potential. It is about empowering women to dream big dreams, to act on a bigger stage, to become leaders,” said Marsha Bailey, WEV’s founder and CEO.

To learn more, visit

‘Exploring Entrepreneurship’

Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) launches its 4-session ‘Exploring Entrepreneurship’ (‘Explore’) course in October after a successful pilot over the summer. With 26 years of experience in entrepreneurial and economic development for women, WEV adds this shorter course to its cadre of services in order to meet the needs of those considering starting a small business.

“We found that women were looking for an intensive but accessible way to test their business idea(s) and preparedness for entrepreneurship before making the leap,” says Program Manager, Leah Gonzales. “The ‘Exploring Entrepreneurship’ course provides the right environment and mix of skill-building and activities to empower participants to make a solid decision about pursuing their idea.”

Course topics include myth busting about entrepreneurship, defining target market and conducting market research, personal and business finances, and conducting a SWOT (Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats) analysis of the business idea and owner.

After completing Explore, participants may decide to enroll in WEV’s 14-week business planning course, or create a 2-year plan for launch, or recognize that entrepreneurship may not be a fit – all positive outcomes for the brief course.

Women’s Economic Ventures (WEV) Launches ‘Exploring Entrepreneurship’ Course
Ventura: Thursdays; October 19th – November 16th, 2017 (excluding November 2nd), 6:00-9:00pm
Santa Barbara: Tuesdays; October 17th – November 14th, 2017 (excluding October 31st), 6:00-9:00pm
Cost: $125

Registration: Attendance of a WEV orientation is required; visit the Explore webpage:

Dr. Janis Shinkawa selected as finalist for Woman Business Owner of the Year

“Our chapter is proud and excited that one of our members is a finalist.”

The National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) has announced the finalists for the 2017 Woman Business Owner of the Year Award. Among thousands of members, Dr. Janis Shinkawa, co-founder and medical director of Ohana Pet Hospital in Ventura rose to the top of the outstanding field along with two other national finalists, NAWBO members Kimberly Baeth of Golden Openings, Urbandale, Iowa and Kim Heathcott of Clarion Security, Memphis, Tennessee.

“NAWBO members set the bar high in all their endeavors.  We look forward each year to recognizing a woman business owner that embodies the entrepreneurial spirit and continues to push the limits of what is possible,” said Kathy Warnick NAWBO National Chair.  “NAWBO is proud to be the unified voice of all women business owners.  The three women we recognize this year represent the diversity of industries and interests we support through NAWBO programs.  Even though they come from different sectors of industry, their desire to build a thriving business and give back to others unites them and makes them worthy of distinction.”

“Our chapter is proud and excited that one of our members is a finalist for this prestigious award,” said Elaine Hollifield, NAWBO Ventura County President and owner of Hollifield Creative. “Dr. Jan and everyone at Ohana Pet Hospital have earned and deserve every accolade. They are wonderful role models for a successful business that contributes greatly to our community.” Dr. Shinkawa was nominated by NAWBO California Board Member and Past President, Ventura County Chapter Diane de Mailly of DDM Metering Systems.

The NAWBO  recognizes a NAWBO Member who excels at strategy, operations, finances, problem-solving, overcomes adversity and gives back to her community. NAWBO leadership will present the distinguished award during the Annual Awards Gala on October 17 in Minneapolis. The Awards Gala will conclude the National Women’s Business Conference.

Founded in 1975, the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) is the unified voice of America’s more than 9.1 million women-owned businesses representing the fastest growing segment of the economy. NAWBO is the only dues-based organization representing the interests of all women entrepreneurs across all industries. NAWBO develops programs that help navigate women entrepreneurs through the various stages of their business growth.

Lice Clinics of America – Ventura

Tatum Singletary and dog Holly Berry are always ready to greet everyone.

by Victoria Usher

Lice Clinics of America (LCA) corporate has had the same goal since they first began and that is to help give not only hope but an effective treatment that truly works for children, parents, school districts, and medical professionals whenever lice strikes. Today, LCA has their corporate headquarters in Murray, Utah and they also have 150 plus other locations in cities across the country. Dr. Dale Clayton founded LCA after spending years experimenting and then finally discovering that a good mixture of heat and airflow can desiccate lice and their eggs.

You can find the Lice Clinics of America – Ventura location at 3875 Telegraph Road Suite J. The Ventura clinic serves the following southern California cities: Buellton, Carpinteria, Fillmore, Goleta, Lompoc, Ojai, Oxnard, Port Hueneme, Santa Barbara, Santa Paula, Santa Ynez, and Solvang.

The people at the Ventura LCA location are incredibly smart, kind, and understanding people.

Tatum (Tate) Singletary and his wife, Amy Singletary, own the Ventura location that is operated by Tate. After learning about LCA from his brother-in-law, George Macoubray (who opened the Portland LCA clinic in February) Tate attended a summit meeting in Utah, about LCA and met Dale Clayton.

Tate and Amy have created a wonderful environment that is not anything like a lot of clinics, it has a warm and welcoming feeling from the moment you walk in. To add an extra heartwarming touch, they also have a beautiful 12-year-old yellow Labrador Retriever named Holly Berry who is always ready to greet everyone kindly when they walk through the door and bring a smile to everyone’s face.

Lice Clinics of America’s Ventura sees clients by appointment only, daily from 9 am – 6 pm. If you have any questions or would like to schedule an appointment you can call 334-0951 x1 or you can visit the website

How Cute is That! Consignment Boutique

How Cute is That! Consignment Boutique had their official Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting on Wednesday, September 6th. Owner, Ellyn Ostrove, many of her friends, Chamber members, family and community supporters joined her for this special occasion.

How Cute is That! offers pre-loved, women’s upscale designer and name brand clothing, accessories and household decor, handpicked and curated by Ellyn herself.

Her mission is to provide the look of a high end Boutique with the feel and comfort of classic Ventura.

Boutique hours are Tues-Sat 11am – 6pm, (closed Sun/Mon) and is located at 2122 East Thompson Blvd. 628-9419