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Business Pulse - Fresh year, fresh starts
vol bearing owners.jpg
From left, Scott and Tera Elkins and Tim McPeak welcome customers to visit them at Volunteer Bearing LLC.

With the holidays behind us, time is starting to feel normal again. While I love Christmas and New Year festivities, it's nice to not be confused about what day of the week it is anymore. As the new year gets fully underway, let's take a look at a couple of existing businesses that are getting a fresh start.


Volunteer Bearing gets new owners

Nestled in the shadow of the water tower in Morrison's Industrial Park, Volunteer Bearing & Supply has been in operation since 1998. A family venture, Volunteer Bearing was started by Max Slatton and is located at 1055 Mt. View Industrial Dr.

The business sells power-transmission equipment across the country. Its customer base includes nursery equipment manufacturers, automotive companies, aircraft ground equipment manufacturers, as well as the lumber and agriculture industries. "We sell to Calsonic and Bridgestone and a lot of the factories around here and we also sell to many out-of-state businesses. I'd say it's about 50-50 as far as local vs. out-of-state customers. We started local but it's really expanded," Max said. 

The new year is bringing change to Volunteer Bearing as Max is beginning the retirement process and has sold the business to Scott and Tera Elkins, his son-in-law and daughter. Along with Scott and Tera's son, Rylan, who handles the warehouse, shipping and delivery, it's a true family affair. They are assisted by Tim McPeak who handles inside sales. Scott and Tera took the reins on Jan. 1 and the company is now Volunteer Bearing LLC. Scott has been with the company for 23 years, handling purchasing and inside sales while Tera has worked at the company for over 14 years in accounting and bookkeeping. 

Volunteer Bearing LLC boasts the largest on-the-shelf inventory of bearings in the Middle Tennessee area and offers a variety of maintenance items. "We believe in having inventory ready and available when needed," said Scott. "Whether you are manufacturing new equipment or just need a replacement bearing for your farm or industrial equipment, we have you covered. We have experienced rapid growth the last several years due to our internet presence and our customer base continues to grow rapidly."

As spring approaches, Scott and Tera would like to remind everyone Volunteer Bearing LLC is open to the public and is the place to go for all your bearing needs for hay balers, discs and planters. Just some of the many items the business offers are chain, sprockets, oil seals, V-belts and pulleys, bushings and electric motors.

As a small family business, Volunteer Bearing LLC appreciates its customers and invites everyone to drop in to visit and check out the variety of products available. They can also be found at VolunteerBearing.com or on Facebook at Volunteer Bearing LLC.

The business is open Monday - Friday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a lunch closure from 11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. For more info, they can be reached by email at sales@volunteerbearing.com or at (931) 815-8391.

Sam's in new home

On Oct. 16, I told you of Sam Hunsberger's impending move of her Sam's Deli & Sweet Box Bakery. The eatery has grown quite a following at Three Star Mall since its opening on March 19, 2022.  After much hard work on the building last occupied by Auntie Mattie's at 488 N. Chancery St., Sam is now ready to turn on the open sign at her new location.

One of the exciting features at the new location is a drive-thru which opens Monday. Curbside service is also currently available. Sam's will fully open on Jan. 14 with a grand opening ribbon cutting. 

Specializing in Northeastern-style food brought to the South, you can expect to find the same menu consisting of hoagies, cheesecakes, turkey clubs and so much more that Sam's offered at the mall making the move with her to N. Chancery St., where the possibility of menu expansion is enhanced.

Sam is enthusiastic about the new location and the flexibility for growth it provides. "Our space here is over 1,500 sq. ft. The space at the mall is a little over 900 sq. ft. We have a much larger kitchen now so hopefully I can do more things that I'm capable of. Our kitchen there was about the size of a food truck, so it was hard," Sam said.

Making the move with Sam is the same cast of friendly faces customers are used to seeing at the mall. And Sam's customer base is obviously eager to greet the staff at the new building. Even as I was conducting this interview in a still-under-construction deli that was not quite open, Sam received numerous phone calls and even saw some customers driving up to see if she was open yet. Those eager folks have to wait no more.

Sam has done extensive traveling due, in part, to her father and many other members of her family serving in the military and she's looking to bring some of the influences she's gathered from her travels to the deli. 

"My dad was Army, my brother was Army and did tours in Iraq and Afghanistan; my whole family is military. I have a cousin now stationed in Virginia Beach. I love my veteran customers and understand that lifestyle," Sam said. 

In addition to drive-thru, the location provides other benefits. "We can have outdoor seating here, so we're pretty excited for that in the spring and summer.  I'd like to have French-style seating like I've seen in many of the places I've visited," Sam said.

Sam is an experienced woodworker so she has been doing much of the renovation and painting herself.  "We're completely out of the mall location now. I just need to take the sign down. This was a pretty old building and there was a lot for me to do, which is why we haven't opened before this," Sam said. 

Sam's Deli & Sweet Box Bakery can be found at 488 N. Chancery St. and, beginning Monday at 11 a.m., drive-thru and curbside is open. The full deli will fling open its doors Jan. 14.


Until next time,

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Thanks to all the businesses reaching out to me. Please keep those tips coming at editor@southernstandard.com and (931) 473-2191.