It's Your Business: Fyx your phone
Brendan Hsu realized many cellphones and computers can be fixed, rather than replaced, when damaged, and he's getting ready to move his repair business, fyxit, to a storefront along Green Street in Campustown.
Within the next week or so, fyxit is expected to open on the first floor of Park Place Tower, 202 E. Green St., C — the former location of Quick Package Pickup.
Hours for fyxit are expected to be 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, as well as Saturday afternoons.
Hsu said he and his staff can work on such things as cracked iPhone screens, chargers that have stopped working and virus removal. They also can provide website design and development services.
Hsu, who graduated from the University of Illinois College of Business in 2012 with a bachelor's degree in information technology and information systems, said he worked a couple part-time jobs at Verizon and Simplified Computers for a few months before deciding to open a business of his own.
He has two partners in the business — Andrew Redmon and John Zhao.
The store's phone number is 697-4171, and its website is fyxit.net.
Dog Den opens
It's not that downtown Champaign is going to the dogs — rather, the dogs are going to downtown Champaign.
In some cases, they're going to The Dog Den, a dog day care facility that recently opened just east of the Simply Amish store in the former Sullivan Chevrolet building at 52 E. Washington St., C.
Jacqueline Cahill, who co-owns The Dog Den with Ken Reiterman, said that in addition to day care, the business offers dog boarding and light grooming and plans to add training services shortly.
The 6,300-square-foot space has plenty of room for dogs to play together in groups, but also has separate rooms for less social dogs.
Cahill said dogs left home alone can become destructive if they're bored.
With dog day care, "It's easy for them to play and have fun during the day. We practice basic obedience commands throughout the day," she said, calling it "good reinforcement for obedience training."
The light grooming includes baths, nail trims, ear cleaning — "everything except hair cutting," she said. The Dog Den offers aromatherapy treatment for dogs, using essential oils to promote relaxation, and also offers canine massage, Cahill said.
The business is open from 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, but outside-hours arrangements can be made for people who work late. Weekend lobby hours are 8 to 10 a.m. Saturdays and 3 to 5 p.m. Sundays, and by appointment.
Both Cahill and Reiterman formerly worked as shift supervisors at Lincoln's Challenge in Rantoul. They both loved dogs, and after Cahill talked with her sister, who owns a dog day care in Michigan, they decided they wanted to open one here. Reiterman is operations manager for The Dog Den, and Cahill is business manager.
The phone number is 552-1318, and the website is cudogden.com.
Missing the Apple store?
Simply Mac plans to open a store at Champaign's Market Place Shopping Center.
"Simply Mac is a licensed Apple products store" that sells and repairs Apple products, said the shopping center's general manager, Dennis Robertson. In some ways, the store is similar to Apple stores in Chicago, St. Louis or Indianapolis, but unlike those stores, it's not owned by Apple.
"They plan to be open about the time school starts," Robertson said.
The store will be located in the Macy's wing of the mall — between Jimmy Jazz men's apparel and Justice children's apparel and across from Yankee Candle and Tradehome Shoes.
An email seeking comment from Simply Mac's marketing department was not answered last week.
The company's website said Simply Mac offers iPads, iPods, iPhones as well as Apple computers and accessories. Salt Lake City-based Simply Mac has stores in 11 states in the western and central United States. Its easternmost store recently opened in Valparaiso, Ind.
Moving more than luggage
Bellhops, a moving company that relies on college students for muscle, has expanded to Champaign-Urbana.
The local Bellhops organization has a staff of about 80 University of Illinois students, all of whom are independent contractors.
Matt Patterson, chief operating officer of Bellhops, said the company was founded in Auburn, Ala., in 2012, and now operates in 121 cities in 42 states.
Bellhops began building its team in Champaign-Urbana about Feb. 1 and started serving the community in May, he said.
"Bellhops is a local on-demand service that anyone can use, year-round," Patterson said. "We do not just serve students, we serve the entire Champaign-Urbana area."
Only college students serve as "bellhops," he said, but the company serves anyone who needs help moving.
"We provide any size of moving truck up to 26 feet," he added. "We do not own trucks. We procure them through relationships with U-Haul and Penske."
Paul Madison, who will be a UI senior, is the UI campus director, working closely with Adam Jones. Both are advertising majors.
Madison said the local Bellhops organization has handled about 20 jobs so far and hopes to establish partnerships with area businesses.
And in case you're wondering whether Bellhops movers wear classic bellhop uniforms, the answer is no. Their only distinguishing apparel is a bright green headband.
More information about Bellhops can be found at getbellhops.com. Their services can be booked at the same site.
From Bellhops to Beltone
The Beltone Hearing Aid Center at 1402 S. Neil St., C, will move to a new location soon.
That office will close Thursday and reopen July 7 at 816 N. Country Fair Drive, Unit 4, C, said Bekki Kist, who co-owns the location with her sister, Jennifer Thompson. The phone number will continue to be 359-3331.
Kist said the move was prompted by the planned expansion of the Rainbow Garden restaurant, Beltone's neighbor to the north on Neil.
Kist and Thompson, both of whom are board-certified hearing specialists, also own the Beltone centers in Rantoul, Danville, Watseka and Bradley. They acquired the stores in 2006 from their parents, Paul and Nova Gilbert, who had operated the business since 1965.
Next year will mark 50 years in business for the family.
Pantry not bare for long
Folks who patronized the old Campus Liquor convenience store at Fourth and Green streets in Champaign — where the HERE apartment building is going up — will be glad to know that a new and larger version of the store is expected to open a couple blocks to the west.
Campus Pantry plans to open in August on the first floor of the new five-story apartment building at the northwest corner of Second and Green streets, where the White Horse Inn and Garcia's Pizza-In-A-Pan once stood. The convenience store will occupy about 3,000 square feet on the east end of the building at 112 E. Green St., C, said manager Barinder Singh.
Singh said one reason the new location was chosen is that "it's close to apartment buildings." He said the store — which will carry beer, liquor, eggs, milk, bread and snacks, among other items — is expected to employ six.
Aldi shoppers in Danville can enter a sweepstakes to win Aldi gift certificates during the grand opening of the remodeled and expanded store at 502 S. Gilbert St., Danville, on Monday.
The grand reopening ceremony is scheduled for 9 a.m. The refurbished store includes higher ceilings, environmentally friendly building materials and energy-saving refrigeration.
Store hours are 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.
Aldi has nearly 1,300 stores in 32 states and has been adding an average of 80 new stores a year.
Many reasons to party
The IDEA Store at 28 E. Springfield Ave., C, is holding an "all-purpose party" Tuesday, in part to welcome Clori D'Agnolo as its new general manager and to say goodbye to Gail Glende Rost, who is taking a development position in the University of Illinois College of Fine and Applied Arts.
The party is from 4 to 6:30 p.m., and folks are invited to drop by for a cupcake and some punch.
The store, a social enterprise of the Champaign Urbana Schools Foundation, is approaching its fourth anniversary.
Among other reasons for the party: welcoming Molly Delaney as executive director for the foundation and wishing Shauna Carey well on her retirement as the store's education coordinator.
Rug sale looming
It's a ways off, but you may want to mark Ten Thousand Villages' annual Oriental Rug Event on your calendar.
The event, which will feature more than 300 Bunyaad rugs, will be Sept. 26-28 in the Quad Room of the I Hotel and Conference Center, 1900 S. First St., C.
Bunyaad is a fair-trade Oriental rug company that works with more than 850 families in 100 villages in Pakistan. More than half the artisans are women.
The hand-knotted rugs range in size from 2 by 3 feet to 10 by 14 feet.
The event at the hotel is hosted by Ten Thousand Villages, a nonprofit retailer at 105 N. Walnut St., C.
Two Men expands
Rene and Dan Shunk, who operate the local Two Men and A Truck moving franchise, are expanding their business by opening another full office in Springfield.
They are planning to add at least 12 new employees, according to the company's public relations firm.
The McDonald Group Real Estate Team in Champaign is one of hundreds of real estate agencies nationwide participating in the "Great Home Giveaway" sweepstakes.
Prizes in the sweepstakes include 16 down payments of $10,000 each, as well as a $100,000 grand prize that can be used toward purchase of a new home.
Prospective homebuyers can register for the sweepstakes by entering information at tmggreathomegiveaway.com. No purchase is necessary, but there are different rules of entry for those who prequalify for a mortgage and those who don't. Entrants must be at least 21 years old.
The contest runs through Jan. 31, 2015, with a $10,000 down payment to be given away every two weeks until the end of December. The $100,000 prize winner will be announced in January 2015.
Contact Don Dodson at 351-5227; by email at firstname.lastname@example.org; or by regular mail at The News-Gazette, c/o It's Your Business column, P.O. Box 677, Champaign, IL 61824-0677.