“Now You Know The Rest Of The Story.”
Last week, as with tradition, we cut the giant red ribbon and publicly welcomed Softline Solutions to the Crescenta Valley community. Chamber board members gathered, employees, family and friends were all present to take part in this honored and momentous ribbon cutting ceremony, and the owners gave us a company snapshot before we took an actual picture, and celebrated with a delicious lunch. Sure, I knew what their company was all about, as I wrote about it in last week’s article, but what I did not know was how it all began.
The two masterminds behind Softline Solutions, Rony Mirzaians and Hutch Postik, grew up watching and observing their families attempt to grow their own small businesses. They saw the rise and fall, the successes and struggles of being a little guy in a competitive world of big business, catchy jingles and large marketing budgets. So they took this knowledge and jumped into the very competitive search engine optimization, online marketing and advertising field, and decided to look after the little guy, focusing on smaller businesses to help them grow and be successful. Their staff has been with them for years and shares not only a deep friendship but also that same motivation and drive to help elevate the many small ventures that are trying to make it in this big world.
There are so many stories in our Valley, so many businesses that started small and that have been passed down from generation to generation, and many folks who have grown up here or found their way here and are now here to stay. J’s Maintenance began that way 45 years ago in 1969 by Mom and Pop Waldheim and is now in the capable hands of Chris Waldheim. Rick Dinger is now president of Crescenta Valley Insurance, a venture that started small in his family, also 45 years ago. The same can be said for Andy’s Transfer & Storage, Gelsinger’s Meats, Schreiner’s Fine Sausages, and many more beloved family-owned ventures.
Have you seen SIG Property Management signs around town and ever wondered why Mike Shaar has an impressive tree as his company logo? He has firmly planted roots in the foothills, but the history and story behind the roots of the tree can be found in the soil of his father’s family. Grayson’s Tune Town in Montrose, opened in 1953, also a beloved small business, is one of the oldest establishments along thriving Honolulu Avenue and is still in the Grayson family.
On my morning walks, I see Paul’s Professional Window Washing trucks driving around, which makes me wonder about Paul’s story and his humble beginnings with a bucket and squeegee.
The stories are endless and fascinating and, while we sometimes only see what people want us to see, there is so much more behind the business card, website, logo or endless “selfie” pics posted on Facebook. On your daily travels through town, as you run errands, pick up or drop off your kids, or grab a bite to eat, think of all the businesses you frequent and how you may have had a part in their story and how much they need you to keep their story going.
May business mixer at J’s Maids and Maintenance, 3550 Foothill Blvd. in La Crescenta on Wednesday, May 7 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Save the date for our annual scholarship golf tournament on Friday, June 27 at Scholl Canyon Golf Course.
For more information on any event, you are always welcome to call us at (818) 248-4957 or visit our website: crescentavalleychamber.org.