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Business Beat: 11/01/2013

Business Beat



G.E. Veterinary changing hands

Pam and Bob Wagner
After 30 years of caring for the community's beloved pets, Dr. Bob Wagner and his wife Pam are retiring and have sold the Glen Ellen Veterinary Hospital.

A deal was due to close at the end of October, with the business being sold to another husband and wife team, Doctors David and Nichole Brooks, both veterinarians.

The Wagners are moving across the country to Pinehurst, North Carolina, a location Pam discovered after googling the words retirement, golf, and horses. The Wagners will be away for a week after closing the deal, and then be around for the rest of November to help with the transition.

“We will miss the community and all the friends both human and furry, that we have made over the past 30 years,” said Pam.

As for the Brooks, they are excited about moving to Glen Ellen and taking over a busy veterinary practice. David, raised north of Atlanta, currently works at the Emergency Animal Hospital of Santa Rosa at night (it's the Redwood Veterinary Clinic in the daytime). David has maintained a position at many different small animal hospitals across the U.S. since he was 16, and has worked in a number of specialty and emergency hospitals. He also has interests and experience working with small animal nutrition, avian wildlife, and some large animal and exotic husbandry.

Nichole was born and raised in Sonoma County, growing up with a love for animals. She has worked in general veterinary practice for many years, developing strong skills in anesthesia and surgery. She also spent time as a zookeeper at Safari West.

David and Nichole have a young son, Levi, 11 months old.

The Brooks said it was their dream to have a practice together, a dream that came true when they found that the Glen Ellen Veterinary Hospital was for sale.

“We look forward to serving Glen Ellen and the surrounding community for years to come,” said David.

To reach the Glen Ellen Veterinary Hospital, call 996-2300, or go to www.glenellenvet.com.

Korbin Kameron opens tasting room in Glen Ellen

Korbin (left) and Mitchell Ming

The grapes that go into Kor-bin Kameron wines come exclusively from 20-plus acres at the top of Mount Veeder, straddling the Sonoma/Napa county line, land that general manager Kor-bin Ming's father, Mitchell Ming, bought in the late 1990s.

“When we were kids, we were reluctant to come to this country property without TV or Internet and away from all our friends,” said Korbin Ming. The Ming siblings, twins Korbin and Kameron, and older sister, Kristin, grew up in the Bay Area, but their father's passion for wine pulled the family north.

Mitchell Ming had bought the high elevation property in Glen Ellen because it produced the type of wine he liked to drink, full bodied Bordeaux-style blends.

Although Mitchell was growing and bottling wine as a hobby all through Korbin's adolescence, Korbin took little interest until after graduating from college. In an effort to bond with his father, he and Mitchell took some wine classes together and suddenly Korbin understood what all the fuss was about.

After a “steep learning curve” working in the vineyard, Korbin, just over the legal drinking age, decided to pursue growing the brand beyond the family table. “You don't ever want to sit on your laurels,” said Korbin. “Always keep pushing it to the next level. We are still trying to do that.”

In 2008 Korbin Kameron released its first public vintage, selling direct through distribution in several different states. As demand and production grew from 1,000 to 2,000 cases, the family decided it was time to focus on direct to consumer sales and find a place for a tasting room. “Opening a tasting room isn't something you just do right away, without any thought,” said Korbin. The search for the perfect location was a very serious undertaking.

Ultimately, the two-year search landed them in Glen Ellen because of the convenience, charm and community, said Korbin.

Five years after the first vintage, Korbin Kameron is still strictly a family operation, with both Korbin and Mitchell manning the tasting bar. “Working as a family, it's easy,” said Korbin. “Some think it would be hard, but it's not. We are all on the same page.” Korbin said when the time came to pick a logo, in a blind pick, the entire family all chose the same logo; white intertwined grape vines on a black background.

The tasting room is currently open 12 to 6 p.m., Thursday through Sunday, pouring exclusively estate-grown varietals that include a rosé, merlot, cabernet sauvignon and estate blend cuvee, named after Kristin, the oldest sister.

“I don't think you should be in this business unless you're 100 percent passionate about it,” said Korbin, who has gone back to school to get a graduate degree in viticulture.

The tasting room is located at 13647 Arnold Dr. in downtown Glen Ellen. For more information, call 935-3888 or go to www.korbinkameron.com.

Glen Ellen manicurist joins Roseann's Haircutting

Melanie Hefernan

Roseann's Haircutting in Glen Ellen has expanded its services, offering manicures, pedicures and other nail services by local resident, Melanie Hefernan.

Hefernan is offering manicures ($20) and pedicures ($25), focusing on natural nails and gel polish, as well as acrylics. Her treatments also feature artisan handmade natural beauty products from Moonflowers, out of Marin, owned and operated by Hefernan's parents.

Hefernan had been a client of Roseann's for many years, taking her three kids there regularly for haircuts. When Roseann asked her to become her manicurist, Hefernan said it was the push she needed to return to beauty school and get her license.

Fresh out of beauty school (she received her license last month), Hefernan said she's focusing on building up her client base. “I want to be able to offer a really nice service that will make people want to come back again,” said Hefernan.

“I love doing pedicures, with a nice foot massage,” she added. “It makes me happy making people happy when their feet feel soft when they leave the salon.”

In addition to her nail services, Hefernan is offering a pumpkin scrub now through the end of November and will offer a holiday pomegranate scrub for December.

Roseann's Haircutting is located at 13750 Arnold Dr. in Glen Ellen. You can reach Melanie at the salon at 938-3724.

Hours available: Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday through Saturday. Afternoon appointments available on request.

New line of flower essences at Quarryhill

When certified flower essence practitioner Kathleen Aspenns moved to Healdsburg almost a decade ago, she fell in love with the diversity of the exotic plants housed at Quarryhill Botanical Garden in Glen Ellen.

“For someone who knows and studies plants for a living, it was exciting,” said Aspenns, who also spent 10 years in the horticulture industry designing gardens. “I said 'Oh, I've never even heard of this before.'”

Flower essences are used in healing, and are typically taken orally from a dropper bottle as a tincture. However, unlike essential oils, said Aspenns, flower essences have no scent or taste. Essences are derived from different plants to work with the body's energy systems to relieve things like anxiety and stress, and can be effective for both humans and animals.

In Aspenn's work as a practitioner, she had become very familiar with essences from places like Australia, but said “no one had explored essences from plants from Asia.” With the permission of executive director, Bill McNamara, Aspenns began making regular visits to the garden to do her research.

Aspenns said the process of selecting plants for a particular essence blend begins by attuning herself to the energy of the plant. Once the plant gives her permission, a part of it is picked and solarized in a bowl of water under the sun. The essences are set in a dilution of brandy to preserve them and mixtures for specific clients or situations are then made.

The practice of using flower essences in healing was popularized by Dr. Edward Bach in the 1930s. His line of essences, Rescue Remedy, are one of the most widely known flower essence products, and still in production today.

Aspenns said she works with each client's individual needs to develop a flower essence. Flower essences do not heal illness themselves, but can relieve underlying emotional issues that may be preventing the healing from taking place.

Aspenns' new research line of flower essences derived from the plants at Quarryhill is called Flora of Asia. It is available at the Quarryhill Botanical Garden gift shop, 12841 Sonoma Hwy. in Glen Ellen, and online at floraofasia.com.

Bunnell joins RE/MAX Leading Edge

Realtor Jackie Bunnell has joined the office of RE/MAX Leading Edge in Oakmont. A 40-year resident of Rincon Valley, Bunnell has been a licensed realtor since 2004, and has sold in the Oakmont community for the last 19 months. Involved in community and church activities, Bunnell is the mother of three children and has five grandchildren. Prior to becoming a realtor, she was an office manager for Excel-Now Medical Corp. in Santa Rosa.

RE/MAX Leading Edge is located at 6576 Oakmont Dr. in Oakmont, and can be reached at 537-6727 or www.winecountryhomes123.com.



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