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Business Pulse: 11-16-14
Wrack Wrap people
Steve and Mary Lake have opened Wrack Wrap at 821 Pike Hill Road. The business specializes in industrial sewing and heat welding of vinyl and leather products. Steve is skilled at design and can do custom work. The phone number is 815-7047.

I was surfing the Internet for news Thursday night when I discovered a neat story from London where the world’s tallest man, at 8-foot-3, had an arranged meeting with the world’s shortest man, at 1-foot-9. The two men, despite their vast differences, admitted they have endured similar struggles in life because of their freakish size.
The two were meeting as part of Guinness World Records Day, which has been recognized the past 10 years. It got me thinking about other world records and how bizarre some of these records have become.
Probably one of the most amazing is the one held by Australian Bill Lyndon who threw a washing machine 11 feet, 3 inches to set a world record. I’m guessing his wife then set the world record for hardest slap to the back of the head for ruining her washing machine.
The world record for most marriages goes to Anderson, Ind., resident Linda Wolfe, who has been married 23 times. At least that was the record as of Friday. I don’t know if she got divorced and remarried over the weekend.
In perusing the record book, I discovered the record for largest omelet is 110,000 eggs. Forget about the omelet. I want to see the size of that frying pan.
The world record for longest straw is 248 feet and it took 1 hour, 8 minutes to get the drink from one end to the other. I don’t know if 248 feet should be considered a straw or plumbing.
In a world record set at the expense of personal well-being, Canadian Joshuah Hoover holds the mark for most mousetraps released on a tongue in one minute – 40 mousetraps. That may very well be a record that stands forever because who would want to break it?
And last but not least, the record for most expensive price ever paid to buy someone’s kidney stone is $25,000. That’s the amount actor William Shatner was paid for his kidney stone on Jan. 18, 2006. More than anything this shows some people have more money than good sense. If someone will pay $25,000 for Shatner’s kidney stone, surely I can find someone to give me $500 for my toenails.

Powermatic still coming down

The old Powermatic building on Morrison Street is in its final stages of demolition. Steve Gauger and his crew have been working on the project for more than a year with Steve saying the concrete pad remains in great shape.
“There’s more than $1 million in concrete that’s on the ground that hasn’t been damaged at all,” said Steve. “That’s one of the things that makes this property so attractive. The concrete is in place and the ground work has been done. Whoever buys it will get a head start of several months. They can buy it and start building tomorrow.”
Steve said demolition work is at somewhat of a standstill because the steel structure that remains standing is heading to another construction site. However, that site has been experiencing delays.
“All the steel that’s left standing is going to be used for a building in an adjoining county,” said Steve. “It’s easier to store it standing up than laying down. The problem is the site where it’s going is experiencing delays with the concrete work because of the weather. That goes along with what I was saying about this site and how valuable it is to have the concrete work done.”
I talked to Steve when he began leveling the building and he told me his goal was to repurpose or recycle 95 percent of all the building materials on site. When I talked to him Friday, he said he had slightly exceeded that goal at 95.3 percent.
“We had 42 semi loads of lumber that went straight to other buildings,” said Steve. “All the block and all the brick has been spoken for. About the only thing we couldn’t use was 20 semi loads of roofing which is headed for the landfill.”
For what was a 249,800-square-foot building, those are impressive numbers. It’s great to see there are folks like Steve who are so dedicated to preserving our environment.
As for what remains to be done, Steve said the steel will be gone when the other building site is ready for it. After that, there will be some garbage cleanup to do and also some landscaping to make the property look more attractive.
“We’re going to do good with this property I believe,” said Steve. “We’ve had some people come in and look at it. I hope we’ll be able to announce some jobs.”

Wrack Wrap ready to roll

Steve and Mary Lake have been operating Wrack Wrap out of their home for the past three years as a side project. After enjoying some success, the couple decided it was time to take the business to another level. So they’re leasing a building on Pike Hill Road and are now working full time manufacturing vinyl and leather products.
Wrack Wrap is doing business with some nationwide companies and the Lakes are working on one project that could lead to creating a number of new local jobs.
As for current business, one of their big products is a belt bucket used to hold window cleaning supplies. Steve has sold the belt bucket to the largest window cleaning company in the U.S.
“I worked on four or five different prototypes before I came up with this design,” said Steve. “I gave it to a 17-year window cleaning veteran to see how he liked it and he refused to give it back. He liked it that much."
Wrack Wrap is also manufacturing vinyl covers for industrial steel shipping containers that carry coins. These covers keep the coins from falling off the racks during transport and are used by major armored car companies.
A project that’s in the works is a waterproof bag used to carry automotive cylinder heads overseas. Steve says he’s received positive feedback from this product under development and it will result in more jobs should Wrack Wrap land the work.
Those are just some of the things Wrack Wrap is doing to earn business. For local residents reading this and wondering how they might use the company, Steve and Mary do all types of custom work. For example, Steve says they can repair leather car seats and they can make a heavy-duty custom tarp to your exact specifications.
“I know it sounds funny, but I’m going to Woodbury this afternoon to look at a guy’s wagon,” said Steve. “He’s looking for a cover."
Mary makes attractive leather purses from scratch that come with an added feature for gun enthusiasts. The purses are designed with special holders so guns can be easily transported and accessed.
“I’m making as many as I can right now because we’re going to a gun show in a few weeks,” said Mary.
If you need any type of vinyl or canvas repair, give Wrack Wrap a call. The number is 815-7047. The business is open Monday thru Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon at 821 Pike Hill Road.

Christmas cheer is on the way

The first thing I think about when someone mentions Christmas is Santa Claus. The second thing I think about is getting tons and tons of gifts. The third thing, well, this list could get long.
But one of the things I think about when ushering in the holidays is the Warren County Arts and Craft Fair. Believe it or not, the craft fair starts this Thursday night with the special Sneak-A-Peek, then continues for full days Friday and Saturday.
“This is the 45th year and we’re ready to begin the Christmas season,” said Cindy Rogers of Homeland Community Bank, the craft fair sponsor. “We always look forward to doing some Christmas shopping and visiting with members of the community. We’re very fortunate to have a full house again this year and we’ve actually added eight vendors so that brings us to 142.”
Cindy said the eight new vendors will be positioned on the balcony on the side that has been used to store the wooden stage risers. Since that material is now being stored elsewhere, the space if free to allow vendors.
The craft fair will feature its traditional mix of hometown favorites including woodwork, pottery, stained glass, hand-spun wool, painted porcelain, baked goods, homemade molasses and plenty of Christmas decor such as ornaments, stockings and wreaths.
It gets started at McMinnville Civic Center this Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. with Sneak-A-Peek Night. Admission is $5 and all proceeds benefit Relay for Life.
Regular show hours are Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is free. Food will be available from Foodland Plus, your home of low prices.

Metro Industrial working to help

There are always questions about what we’re doing in this community to reduce the recidivism rate among our jail inmates. In other words, we don’t want the same people committing crimes, getting out of jail, and committing crimes again.
The Warren County Sheriff’s Department has been working to provide inmates with job training and life skills so they can land gainful employment upon their release. And local staffing agency Metro Industrial has been working with law enforcement to provide those former inmates with jobs.
“Metro Industrial has been so kind to extend a hand and help our class participants find a job,” said Sheriff’s Department employee David Snowden. “We’ve had really, really good numbers with the re-entry program at the Sheriff’s Department. Numbers show that if they simply get a job, they’re two-thirds less likely to recidivate. Of the 67 people the program has served this year, less than 6 percent have reoffended.”
Once inmates are selected for the Sheriff’s Department program, they will receive 125 credit hours of computer information technology, and access to life coaches, nutritionists, counselors and guest speakers who offer a positive message.
Metro Industrial branch manager Paula McCorkle said she’s happy to be on board and help the jail inmates, but she also wanted to stress her company has jobs for everyone, not just former criminals.
“We’re a staffing agency with 13 offices and we hire for all sorts of jobs,” said Paula. “Right now there is a huge need and we’re having trouble filling it. I probably have 30 job openings right now in this office and these are local jobs. Anybody who tells you they can’t find a job is probably not looking.”
The fact Metro has jobs to fill is a great thing. I also want to applaud the Sheriff’s Department for its work in equipping these inmates with job skills so they can become productive citizens. Provided they didn’t do something atrocious, people deserve a second chance and they deserve an opportunity for a fresh start. Three cheers for the Sheriff’s Department and for Metro for making it happen.

There’s a new agent in town

New State Farm agent Leigh Holland has settled into her new office on Sparta Street and has hired her friendly office staff which includes Terah McBride and Amber Hill.
“I’m really liking it here,” said Leigh, who relocated to McMinnville from West Tennessee. “This location is great. There’s a lot of visibility. People are beginning to figure out we’re open.”
Leigh says she understands a vital part of doing business in a community is giving back to that community and she plans to be active in a number of local programs once she gets settled. Her office phone number is 474-5252. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

That’s all folks

If you have a new and exciting business tip, or even a dull and boring one, give me a call at 473-2191.