Kannah Creek Brewery

For Jim Jeffryes, brewing beer had always been a source of refuge from his stressful job in technology. That is, until 1998 when he decided to jump into brewing beer full time. Although Jim had brewed beer recreationally, he had never done it in the quantities he was going to need to support a brewery, so after purchasing land on 9th & Struthers in Grand Junction, he enrolled in beer school and took Leading Edge & How to Start a Business. Unfortunately, by the time Jim had finished his education, a major road project was started near 9th & Struthers that would make it difficult to operate a successful business until it was completed, so along with partners, the location near Mesa State College was secured. It took $130,000 in infrastructure improvements from the landlord and an additional $378,000 capital injection to open the doors to Kannah Creek Brewery in October 2005. In the four years Kannah Creek Brewery has been open, it has grown from 25 employees to 35 and is owned by 6 partners.

Jim credits some of his success to working with the SBDC through counseling and Leading Edge. He said it was a real eye opening experience as Leading Edge showed him how complicated running a business could be if a person didn’t have the proper “tools” going into it. He felt Leading Edge and the SBDC provided him with those tools to succeed.

Whatever happened to the original property located on 9th & Struthers you ask? It’s now situated close to a major parkway. Building permits and city approvals have been secured and he’s working on the financing, so expect this business to expand even more in the future!

Jim’s advice to people looking to start a business is, “Have a plan & cash to open a business with. It’s not a hobby and takes lots of hard work.”

Alpine Autohaus

Louie is a six-foot-tall (and growing) house plant and the shop greeter at Alpine Autohaus. He was passed down from the original owner with the adage, “If Louie is doing well, the business is doing well.” According to Alpine Autohaus’ owner, Sean Cotter, Louie is doing very well. Alpine Autohaus opened in 1995 as a one-man operation. Cotter was hired in 2013 when the original owner was ready to move on and with the understanding

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Angels In the Making

Teri Thomas, owner of Angels in the Making, LLC, has always had a passion for working with animals. She trained her first dog at the age of 8. As a child she spent her summers at her grandparent’s ranch in New Mexico, there she raised and trained chickens to do a variety of tasks much to everyone’s surprise. Born and raised in Colorado she attended CSU in Fort Collins for 1 year and Mesa College

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Press Colorado Juice Company

Stephanie Witwer’s dream of creating high quality, all-organic cold press juices to help individuals live healthier, came to life at an event early in 2015. She met Jon Maraschin, Executive Director of the Business Incubator Center, who encouraged her to attend the SBDC’s Leading Edge course in February. Stephanie did and was inspired to launch her business from the Business Incubator Center’s Commercial Kitchen a few months later. After moving into the Business Incubator Center,

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Bloomin Babies

Early in Patty’s nursing career, she knew she wanted to become a midwife. After years as a RN and completing her BSN, she decided it was time to pursue her dream and enrolled at Frontier Nursing University. Little did she know, her education at Frontier Nursing University would not only prepare her to become a midwife but also potentially a future entrepreneur; one of the final capstone projects she had to do was write a

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Busy Bea Quilters

When Grand Junction’s only quilting store closed it’s doors in the Fall of 2013, the local quilting community was devastated. With the closest quilting venue hundreds of miles away, avid quilter, Bea Root, and long time quilting buddy, Tracy Miller, decided that something needed to be done. The idea began forming late last year, and Bea, after being referred to the Small Business Development Center by a close friend, signed up for the Pumping up

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Western Colorado Specialty Pharmacy

What’s a person to do if premanufactured pharmaceuticals just don’t work for you or your pet?  That’s what many people with specific allergies (fillers, dyes, etc), finicky kids/pets, or folks in need of a specific non-traditional dosage of a medication were left to ask until now in Grand Junction, CO.  Karen Floyd has been a pharmacist for over 30 years and has seen an increasing need for the services compounding pharmacies provide.  In 2006 alone,

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