Friday, April 16, 2021

Business Spotlight: Alternative Essence

 The dream of helping others alleviate chronic pain and suffering through offering quality medical cannabis products has become a reality for employees of Alternative Essence in Windham.

Greg Veshinfsky helped opened the business for owner Andrew Keeley in November 2020 at 839 Roosevelt Trail in Windham next to Pratt Abbott and employs a staff of seven. Alternative Essence specializes in offering premium cannabis products at affordable pricing on site along with a user-friendly online ordering system and website. 

“The best thing about what we do here is helping patients and giving them more knowledge when they need something for specific pain,” Veshinfsky said. “It’s gratifying to help find the right dose for them.”  

In an ever-changing cannabis landscape, Veshinfsky says his greatest challenge in operating Alternative Essence is finding the right high-end products for the store.

“Our quality of products and price points distinguish us from our competitors,” he said. “We offer very competitive pricing on all our products and we like to carry products with different price points for different budgets.”

Medical marijuana is a plant-derived medicine obtained from Canabius sativa or Cannabis indica plants and contains three major active compounds including THC, CBD and CBN.

It is frequently used by patients dealing with pain; nausea, muscle spasms; anxiety; multiple sclerosis; low appetite; sleep disorders, autism; epilepsy and other ailments. Research has shown that the health benefits from the use of medical marijuana include pain relief and overcoming nausea commonly associated with chemotherapy cancer treatment and anorexia.

Benefits of medical cannabis include improve immune function, emotional and mood regulation, neuroplasticity, better vascular health and digestive function. Researchers at the American Academy of Neurology have also found that medical marijuana in the form of pills, edibles or oral sprays seem to reduce stiffness and muscle spasms in multiple sclerosis and stimulate appetites among HIV/AIDS patients and others who have a suppressed appetite due to a medical condition or treatment.

Medical marijuana has also been used through the years as a treatment for glaucoma, which is an elevated pressure in the eyeball that can lead to blindness. Products containing cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive component of marijuana, have been shown to offer therapeutic benefits, but don't leave people feeling high.

Researchers have found that medical marijuana can be used successfully to lessen tremors experienced by those suffering from Parkinson’s disease and for those with fibromyalgia, endometriosis, internal cystitis and many other debilitating conditions where the common denominator is chronic pain and suffering.

According to Veshinfsky, Alternative Essence has a strong customer following in the Lakes Region and also in the greater Portland area, as it used to have a store in South Portland.

“We are available seven days a week for all of our patients’ needs with a smile on our faces, even under the masks,” Veshinfsky said. “Our quality and prices speak for themselves.”

He said he places a strong emphasis on customer service and being attentive and listening to all customers. 

“We are compassionate, knowledgeable about the products we offer,” Veshinfsky said. “Visitors to Alternative Essence will find smiling and helpful employees, and a clean store with many different choices and quality options.”      

The business is registered as a caregiver in the state of Maine and all Alternative Essence employees are classified as assistant caregivers.

“We strive to be the front runners in all cannabis-related products,” Veshinfsky said. “Our extraction team at Xtracted Labs is top notch and is always coming up with the best products possible.”

Since opening the business, Veshinfsky said that Alternative Essence has helped many people.

“We have received great feedback from our customers,” he said. “We have a lot of returning customers looking for specific products and strains that we carry,” he said.

Misconceptions are common about what the business does, Veshinfsky said.

“A lot of people see it for party people just wanting to get high, but it’s really quite different in reality,” he said. “It’s really about people wanting to get rid of pain through the quality Ironlung products we offer.”

Alternative Essence can be found online at Altessence.com, on Instagram at altessence_me or by phone at 207-204-9665.

The store is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. <

Friday, April 9, 2021

Business Spotlight: A-Z Water Systems

Clean water is a fundamental element of our existence and essential to our health and well being. Maintaining the purity of the water we drink, shower, and cook with through proper filtration has been proven to have a significant impact on our daily lives.

A-Z Water Systems leads the way in the Lakes Region of Maine in assisting customers in ensuring that their water is the cleanest and safest in can be. With locations in both Standish and Greene, A-Z is a full-service water and radon air company and offers the latest technology, innovation, equipment, and services required to keep the water we drink and air that we breathe as pure as possible. 

“We help our customers with anything they may need, from drilling a new well, to ‘out of water’ calls, to filtering the water that they drink & bathe in to be sure it is contaminant-free and safe for them and their families,” said A-Z owner Carl Levesque.   

A-Z offers well drilling; hydrofracking; water pump installation and service; water tank installation and service; water testing; and water filtration installations and service. They provide annual service on all types of filtration systems to keep them in tip top shape; conduct Radon air testing; identify Radon air and offer mitigation; answer out of water calls; perform well inspections; well chlorination; and work closely with Realtors to be sure their closings are not held up because of any water issues. 

According to Levesque, A-Z services quite a wide area in the state.

“We work in Cumberland, Androscoggin, York, Lincoln, Franklin, Oxford, Kennebec, Sagadahoc, Waldo and Somerset counties,” he said. “We are one of the few companies in the state that does everything from drilling the well all the way down to the water filtration and everything in between. We also specialize in Radon Air Testing & Mitigation, so, one call really does do it all.”

The most significant aspect of the business remains water filtration and water pump replacement and repair,” Levesque said.

“Our prices are extremely fair and competitive,” he said. “We also always make sure the customer knows exactly what they are getting and what it's going to cost ahead of time. We are a local company that prides ourselves in our knowledgeable team and customer service. Integrity is important to us and our customers always come first.

Heidi and Carl Levesque are the owners and 
operators of A-Z Water Systems. 
SUBMITTED PHOTO
Levesque and his wife, Heidi, founded A-Z Water Systems from scratch in 2010 and have been in business locally for almost 11 years. Since then, this business has grown by leaps and bounds. They have expanded by purchasing Clearwater Well Drilling of Hartland, along with acquiring Alpha Water Systems of Sebago and Affordable Water Treatment & Maine Radon of Greene. Carl Levesque is a master well driller and has been in the well drilling and water business for 35 years.

A-Z now employs 12 fulltime workers and Levesque says the best aspect of the business is helping customers resolve their water issues.

“Our customers often tell us how knowledgeable and efficient our technicians are in the field and how extremely helpful our office staff is. In today's market, it's not always easy to get someone to answer the phone or return your calls, so we take a ton of pride in having someone in our office that is solely dedicated to answering our phones and returning calls,” Levesque said. “We also have extremely high Google and Facebook ratings and get thank-you calls and letters all the time.”

To ensure their staff are able to adapt to discern and resolve issues, A-Z technicians obtain all required licenses and keep up with continuing education requirements.

“The State of Maine Well Driller's Commission requires us to have a Master Well Drillers License and a Master Pump Installers License which multiple people in our company have,” Levesque said. “The State of Maine Department of Professional & Financial Regulation Office of Professional & Occupational Regulation Plumbers Examining Board requires us to have a Master Plumbers License which we have. The State of Maine Department of Health & Human Services Radiation Control Program requires us to have Radon Air & Water Mitigation Licenses which we have multiples of in our company. We also have employee's that are apprentices and journeymen working toward getting more of these licenses.”

For more information about A-Z Water Systems, call 207-268-2987 or visit their website online at a-zwatersystems.com or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/azwatersystems <

Friday, April 2, 2021

Business Spotlight: TS Staging and Design

Attention to detail and the insight into knowing what converts a house into a home have led Windham residents Theresa Bouchard and Stephanie Eklund to share their passion for interior decorating in a new business called TS Staging and Design.

Serving all of Cumberland and York counties, TS Staging and Design provides an array of helpful services ranging from home staging to interior redesign, color consultation, Airbnb design, personal organization and holiday decorating and event planning. Bouchard and Eklund opened TS Staging and Design in January and say that the most significant aspect of their business is their creativity. They take pride in their creative talent and channel it by making spaces beautiful with color, design, décor accessories, and proper room arrangement.

With home staging, TS Staging and Design assists clients in selling their homes. They work with real estate agents and sellers directly. They stage spaces in homes for professional photos, open houses, and work with both occupied and vacant spaces. Clients looking to refresh their homes use TS Staging and Design for interior redesign expertise such as room layout and décor guidance based upon a client’s requirements and design aesthetic. TS Staging and Design provide their clients with a detailed proposal that includes their recommendations based on the discussion during the client consultation and an estimated cost of the project.  They offer shopping services and all the final touches to make a client’s house a home. 

As color consult experts, TS Staging and Design provides interior color advice factoring in the client’s color likes and dislikes, size of the rooms, lighting, and more. They work with Airbnb owners to offer initial decorating or redecorating ideas based upon property owners’ vision or requests. Bouchard and Eklund also offer organization services for closets, pantries, and other spaces in their home.  Finally, TS Staging and Design can assist with home or office holiday decorating and event planning.

They first met as neighbors who admired each other’s home decorating tastes and their similar interest in staging and design led them to form TS Staging and Design.

“It doesn’t feel like work, these are things we like to do,” Eklund said. “It’s something new every day and we get to have fun doing it.”

Bouchard said that although interior design is creative and fun, it does have its challenges.

“What can be challenging is working with a couple that have completely different expectations and styles.  They look to us to be the deal breakers to prove who is right or wrong!” Bouchard said. “We listen to each of them and develop recommendations factoring in all ideas to reach a common agreement they can both be happy with.”

Both Bouchard and Eklund say that when a client hires TS Staging and Design, they are guaranteed to love their space no matter if they are planning to sell it, give it a new look, or rent it out.

“We provide a very personal touch and build a strong professional relationship with our clients.  We pride ourselves on listening to our client’s ideas while offering our expert advice to enhance their overall goals,” they said. “Our goal is to understand their vision and exceed their expectations.”

Their pricing is reasonable and comparable to other companies providing the same services. Their competitive costs allow their work to be affordable to many in the community.

“I love getting to know a person and what their vision is for their home,” Eklund said. “Each situation is different. Redesign is the focus for many people in their homes right now. Spaces have become much more multifunctional with many of us spending more time in our homes and it’s affected how we approach our work.” 

According to Bouchard, TS Staging and Design is cost-conscious and respectful of a client’s budget.

“We do our due diligence and research décor items that will not only look beautiful in our clients’ homes, but will fall within their budget guidelines,” she said.

Certified through Home Staging Resources, TS Staging and Design delivers the highest quality of services and prides themselves in their attention to detail. They have received numerous reviews that have highlighted their swift and thorough response to calls and emails, for their courteous and friendly customer service, and for their expansive creative design ideas.

Staying up to date on trends is what their work is truly all about. Using Houzz and Pinterest to name a few, they are always educating themselves on the latest styles, most popular looks, favorite furniture, hot color fads, and what’s hot and what’s not. To promote and highlight their work, they use Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other social media platforms.

For more information about TS Staging and Design, visit their website at www.TSstaginganddesign.com or on Facebook at homestaginganddesignjustforyou or call 207-400-9393. <

Friday, March 26, 2021

Business Spotlight: D&R Paving

If you’re looking for a locally owned paving company that can provide you with a full array of paving services in both residential and commercial capacities, look no further than D&R Paving and Sealcoating.

Established in 1995, owner Dana Brown has decades of experience with jobs both large and small. He has built a reputation for delivering superior workmanship and customer service for all asphalt and paving needs. From the groundwork to the finish sealcoating, his dedicated crew of 10 performs quality work at a very competitive price. 

“What distinguishes us from our competitors is our attention to detail,” Dana said. “We go the extra mile and pay close attention to our work.”

D&R Paving and Sealcoating knows that paving is a big investment and takes thorough steps to ensure that investment will withstand tough Maine seasons for years and years to come. Their attention to detail is unsurpassed. Some of these details are proper drainage, straight edges, smooth finishes, adequate thickness and flush transitions. These details are important to ensure a durable finish and superior curb appeal. They are upfront and honest about the scope of a project so there are no hidden surprises. From the groundwork to completion, they have all the best equipment to get the job done right the first time and on budget.

If you already have paved surfaces it is important to perform proper ongoing maintenance to significantly extend its life. D&R Paving and Sealcoating can help with that too. They use top of the line seal coat to not only provide a protective barrier on the surface but to also enhance the appearance with a flawless smooth, jet-black sheen.

D&R Paving and Sealcoating stresses the importance of sealing up cracks in your asphalt surfaces as well. Even small cracks allow water to seep down underneath the surface of your pavement which will weaken it over time. Seasonal temperatures can cause asphalt to expand and contract creating more and more cracks which can then turn to potholes. For this reason, crack sealing is recommended as the most cost-effective preventative pavement maintenance procedure and should not be put off. 

If your driveway or lot is more than a decade old, it may be time for periodic milling. Asphalt milling is an affordable solution to restore the surface. Rather than a complete demolition, milling grinds up the old asphalt surface and replaces it with a new, smooth overlay. Whatever the surface problem, D&R Paving can assist you with routine maintenance of your driveway or parking lot to ensure that your asphalt surfaces last.

D&R Paving and Sealcoating also offers recycled asphalt which can be a great lower cost alternative to traditional pavement. Reclaimed asphalt is recycled asphalt that has been torn up from a previous project. The asphalt is crushed and mixed with gravel making the surface perform like a gravel road, but with easier maintenance and plowing. It is still far more superior to a dirt or gravel road because it keeps your surface completely solid and free of mud. Once reclaim is laid it will also be simpler down the road to upgrade to traditional asphalt if desired.

For commercial and industrial parking lots, D&R Paving and Sealcoating does striping and marking. Whether you are installing a new parking lot, resurfacing an old one, changing its layout, or simply having existing stripes repainted, D&R will get the job done precisely. They are also very well-versed with ADA guidelines for handicapped access and will provide the knowledge to comply with every regulation.

Working with an independent, family-owned company means you will work with the owner directly and every job is personally guaranteed by Dana himself. Keeping his word, job after job, year after year and doing quality work every time is how they have earned a BBB accredited A+ rating. Their excellent workmanship has earned the trust and loyalty of thousands of satisfied, repeat customers and they are excited to add you to that growing list.

Every job is different, and Dana will bring his more than 25 years of experience in paving to every project. He can advise you on all the options and discuss what is right for your situation and budget. You will get experience combined with personal attention to make sure you are satisfied with your project all the way through.

Prices are based on square footage with groundwork also taken into consideration. Call D&R Paving and Sealcoating for a free estimate now and beat the summer rush at 207-247-8706 or 207-281-2224. You may also email: drpaving@roadrunner.com. Visit them on Facebook or go to their website: www.dandrpavingcompany.com to see a complete description of services, portfolio and read their reviews. <

 

Friday, March 19, 2021

Business Spotlight: Spectrum Orthopaedics

Sports Medicine physician Christopher Lonegan, DO has joined Spectrum Orthopaedics – Windham as a primary care sports medicine physician. Spectrum Orthopaedics, a division of Spectrum Healthcare Partners, which includes Maine Orthopaedics Center and OA Centers for Orthopaedics, is the leading orthopaedic practice in the state of Maine.

Lonegan, DO, is a board-certified and fellowship-trained sports medicine physician who specializes in the treatment of non-surgical sports-related and other musculoskeletal injuries. He grew up in North Yarmouth, graduated Greely High School, and received his Doctorate of Osteopathic Medicine at the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine in Biddeford, Maine.

He’s formerly provided professional team coverage for the Connecticut Suns, New England Black Wolves, and Bellator Mixed Martial Arts. He has been affiliated with the Lake Placid Ironman and provided care for Bryant University, Johnson & Wales, Providence College, and the University of Connecticut.

As a Maine native, Lonegan is looking forward to rekindling old relationships and cultivating new ones.

“I joined Spectrum for the opportunity to return to my home state and be involved in the communities and athletics that provided the foundation for my interest in musculoskeletal injuries and medicine itself. I look forward both to working with local sports teams and patients - young and old, athletes and non-athletes,” Lonegan said. “It’s a moving experience to be able to practice as an orthopaedic physician and treat patients in the communities where I grew up actively training and participating in sports. I love Maine and I love Mainers. I simply can't think of a place I'd rather practice.” 

Christopher Lonegan, DO, has joined Spectrum
Orthopaedics -- Windham as a primary care
sports medicine physician. SUBMITTED PHOTO    

The core team at Windham now includes six board-certified, fellowship-trained orthopaedic physicians who bring a broad range of subspecialty care to the community. Collectively, Spectrum Orthopaedics’ comprehensive service offerings provide improved access and convenience to patients.

Their services include:

• Assessment and treatment of all musculoskeletal conditions in children and adults.

• A full range of surgical and nonsurgical treatment options.

• Injury and fracture care to help get patients back to functioning as soon as possible.

• Newly expanded Physical Therapy and Hand Therapy clinics on site.

• OrthoAccess: a walk-in clinic for acute orthopaedic care (no appointment needed).

• Musculoskeletal diagnostics including X-ray, ultrasound, injections, and U/S-based procedures.

Lonegan’s arrival is among many other changes at the Windham practice site. Spectrum Orthopaedics-Windham recently unveiled an expanded physical therapy space and opened OrthoAccess, an orthopaedic walk-in clinic. These new additions will provide greater access to cost-effective orthopaedic care to the Lakes Region area.

The recently enhanced space at 4A Commons Ave. in Windham will better serve patients. The new physical therapy center has state-of-the-art equipment and offers patients more room for exercise and functional movement. For patients that need same-day care, OrthoAccess, an orthopaedic walk-in clinic is onsite and offers immediate assessment and treatment of sprains, strains, minor fractures, dislocations, and other sports and activity-related injuries. No appointment is needed.

All providers in the Windham office are accepting new patients. The office is conveniently located off of Route 302 and can be reached at 207-893-1738 or fax 207-892-2113. The practice site is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. OrthoAccess is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Physical Therapy Center is open Monday through Thursday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday from 6 a.m. to  4:30 p.m. For more information, please visit OrthoSpectrum.com.

Spectrum is the largest multispecialty, physician-owned group practice serving the state of Maine. The organization consists of 200 physicians practicing in the areas of anesthesiology, orthopaedics, vascular and interventional radiology, pathology, radiology and radiation oncology.

Spectrum Orthopaedics, a division of Spectrum Healthcare Partners, includes Maine Orthopaedics Center and OA Centers for Orthopaedics. Together, the practice offers enhanced accessibility to services, provide more convenience to their patients, and offer subspecialty expert care to all communities. To learn more, visit spectrumhcp.com/ortho. <

 

Friday, March 12, 2021

Business Spotlight: Barnhouse Deli

In business, there’s something genuine about making people happy and giving them their money’s worth and that’s exactly the mission of the Barnhouse Deli in Windham.

Opening shortly before Christmas next to Gilbert’s Chowder House at 61 Tandberg Trail, word of mouth has spread through the community quickly about their incredible handcrafted specialty sandwiches featuring generous portions that Barnhouse Deli offers to anyone with a serious appetite and a hankering for Boston- and New York-types of deli food.

According to Sarah Curtis, Barnhouse Deli Manager, business continues to grow as more people find out they are there and open for business.

“I hear it all the time from everyone that this is a place and something that Windham has needed for some time,” Curtis said. “It offers an alternative to fast food restaurants and what we do here is very simple. We offer homemade delicious sandwiches made the old-fashioned way with quality Boars Head meats and cheeses and we pay attention to detail.”

Barnhouse Deli sells eight different customized sandwiches or patrons can branch out and have one built for them according to their own specifications and wishes. They use thick cut sourdough, wheat, rye, crusty baguette, gluten-free and croissant breads and they also make fantastic wraps too. And every sandwich comes with a pickle hailing from Waldoboro in Maine.

Each sandwich that Barnhouse Deli sells is immense in size and is a creative work of art all on its own.    

“One of the best things about what I do is that I not only make sandwiches that are great to eat, but they’re beautiful to look at too. The creative aspect of making these sandwiches is very satisfying to me.”

The most popular sandwich since Barnhouse opened is the “Jumpin’ Jim,” which consists of layers of roast beef, ham, turkey, lettuce and mayo on sourdough bread.

Curtis says that Barnhouse Deli employs a staff of three and its sandwiches are priced competitively and are high-quality meals with an emphasis on nothing but the freshest of ingredients. Each sandwich is enhanced with condiments from around the state. Customers can purchase and take home many of these condiments, along with an assortment of homemade baked goods, whoopie pies, potato salad, fine wines, essential herbs, healing salves, creams and salts.

Customers will find Barnhouse Deli to be an awesome local source for quality meats, cheeses, and fresh salads, including chicken salad, egg salad and tuna salad, to take home and create your own sandwiches. Veggie sandwiches are popular menu items and gluten-free selections are also available.   

The Barnhouse Deli is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday with plans to expand day and hours and create an outdoor seating area during the summer.

Affiliated with Gilbert’s Chowder House, Barnhouse Deli is constantly adding to its menu and inventory, Curtis said.

“As the manager of the Barnhouse Deli, I’ve been part of the Windham restaurant community for a number of years as the proud former owner of the StoneDog Café,” Curtis said. “Jim Gilbert has owned and operated Gilbert’s Chowder House in Windham and in Portland for many years along with several other restaurant endeavors.”

She said that to be successful and draw customers back again and again to the Barnhouse Deli, the business needs to deliver three things.

“First, we have to be consistent and always sell a great sandwich,” Curtis said. “Second, we must always maintain the highest quality products and lastly, we have to enjoy meeting people in this line of work.”

By serving up tasty food with large portions, friendly and welcoming staff and a warm and cordial atmosphere, Barnhouse Deli intends to appeal to almost everyone and earn customer business.

“Everyone that comes is here is treated like members of our own family,” Curtis said. “The response we’ve received so far from the community has been simply fantastic and we hope to continue to earn the public’s trust as a great place to visit and enjoy a sandwich from.”       

To learn more about Barnhouse Deli, visit them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Barnhouse-Deli-at-Gilberts-Chowderhouse

To order ahead for pick-up, call 207-893-3451. <                                                                                                                                                     

Friday, March 5, 2021

Business Spotlight: Sebago Lakes Accounting


For Ed Ricker, the owner of Sebago Lakes Accounting, the secret to operating a successful business, isn’t complicated.

“Consistency and persistence are two of the things that will get you through,” Ricker said. “And treating everyone as if they are the only client you may have.”

Ricker has owned Sebago Lakes Accounting for the past four years, but he’s no stranger to the field, having spent more than 20 years in the investment and finance field. He’s lived in the Windham area for the last 16 years and knows the community and those who live in the Lakes Region of Maine well.

At Sebago Lakes Accounting, Ricker offers a range of tax preparation services and can help his clients develop strategies to reduce their tax bills or become more efficient so they can keep more of their hard-earned money.

“Sebago Lakes Accounting believes in the importance of a solid relationship with its clients,” Ricker said. “We understand it’s not easy being a small-business owner in today’s marketplace, and we’re committed to maintaining a lifelong relationship with all our clients, offering tax preparation and tax resolution services.”

He says the misconception of accounting firms is that they are all the same.

“People think of accountants as somebody taking numbers and filling out forms,” Ricker said. “They see that from most places when they have their taxes done, but what we do is so much more than that. Yes, we do tax preparation and filing, but we also assist companies in creating 1099s for small businesses. and we file sales tax reports on a monthly or quarterly basis.”

What Ricker says makes Sebago Lakes Accounting stand out from competitors is a combination of attentive and excellent customer service, competent and knowledgeable tax preparation work and highly competitive fees and pricing.

“The difference that many people tell me is our responsiveness to our clients,” he said. “When you call us, we are going to call you back and quickly. We won’t leave you hanging and can find the answers to your questions right away.”

Ricker said he strives to allay his clients’ anxiety about taxes by showing empathy and putting his experience and knowledge of the tax system to full use.

He guides clients through all phases of the tax process, including data collection, preparation and filing to ensure everything is complete and in full compliance with existing tax law, minimizing tax liability and the stress factors that are typically associated with taxes. 

“I’m here to relieve my clients from the stress of having to worry about your accounting needs,” Ricker said. “Truly the best thing about what I do is to see the relief on people’s faces when their taxes are done, and they personally didn’t have to do them. It’s like a huge weight has been lifted off their shoulders.”

Another aspect of Ricker’s job is to educate and advise Sebago Lakes Accounting clients on what options they can deploy to minimize future tax liabilities.

“The ever-changing tax laws are a significant challenge to keep up with,” he said. “Whether it is stimulus funding, or the change of an entire administration in Washington, writing new tax law is part of the system and keeping up with it all is a continuing process for Sebago Lakes Accounting. We stay out in front of the changes by whatever means possible and that could be through webinars and audio programming or through continuing education up to 24 hours in the course of a single year.”

According to Ricker, Sebago Lakes Accounting also specializes in offering real estate tax strategies and advice.

“If you’re looking to purchase real estate as an investment, speak to us before making your real estate decisions,” he said. “Saving money for our clients is what we do.”

For a free consultation with Sebago Lakes Accounting, call 207-221-6603, email: ed@sebagolakesaccounting.com or visit sebagolakesaccounting.com. He is currently offering both in-person as well as virtual appointments. You can also find him on Facebook. <

Friday, February 26, 2021

Business Spotlight: Taylor’s Firewood and Taylor and Sons Landscaping

 Through years of experience, Bob Taylor knows the value of having a business with diverse operations. His companies, Taylor’s Firewood LLC and Taylor and Sons Landscaping LLC, operate year-round and offer premium delivered firewood for winter heating, an array of landscaping services such as seasonal yard cleanups, mulch spreading, mowing, snow plowing and more.

Bob Taylor has been associated with firewood for as long as he can remember. His father, Robert Taylor, Sr. (known locally as “The Firewood Man”) founded the business when Bob was growing up and he hired his son to start helping stack cords of wood and deliver firewood when he was 15. He’s been at it ever since and took over ownership of the company when his father died 10 years ago, leaving behind decades of successful deliveries to homes throughout the Lakes Region and hundreds of satisfied customers. 

“We don’t take shortcuts for any of our customers,” Bob said. “We do what we say we’ll do and then go above and beyond. In all the years that I’ve been doing this, my philosophy for running a successful business is simple. If I please you, you’re going to tell your friends, your neighbors and your family. Word of mouth is the best advertising I can get. I always do the best I can for my customers and try to make everyone happy. If they’re happy, they’ll certainly call us again and again.”

According to Bob, the best time to purchase firewood is right now. “It’s green and frozen at this time, and there is no sap in the wood,” he said. “It’s seasoned dry wood that is custom split to what the customers want. And it’s from Maine with all of our firewood trucked to us directly from locations in Lyman and Gray. We have good solid tree length ready to be cut to fit your needs.”

The wood is a mix of maple, beech, birch, oak and ash and comes sized per customer request. Taylor’s firewood is dried and seasoned for optimum burning and heating. This process can take up to two years, but it allows moisture to evaporate from wood, yielding firewood that burns safely and efficiently, Bob said.

Delivery from Taylor’s Firewood is offered for free, but should a customer so desire, firewood can also be personally picked up at the company’s wood yard in Standish.

Because they are a small company, Taylor’s Firewood offers shorter wait times for deliveries and orders can be made over the phone with most deliveries made the following day. When a customer places an order, they will get only the most personalized service by talking directly to Bob or his wife and will typically not even reach an answering machine and will certainly not be waiting for an online response. 

Firewood prices are highly competitive compared to other suppliers in the area and Bob said he guarantees you get what you pay for. “When you buy a cord of wood from us that’s exactly what you get,” Bob said. “We make sure it amounts to a cord, unlike some other companies who promise a full cord but deliver less than that.” Multi-cord discounts are also available.

Besides firewood, Bob and his son also provide experienced landscaping and property maintenance solutions, ranging from mowing and mulching to new lawn installations from seed or sod. They specialize in spring and fall cleanups and are also adept at planting trees, flowers and shrubs. Customers can take advantage of Taylor and Sons generous contractor discounts when choosing items to be planted from local dealers.

Mulch delivery service is always free from Taylor and Sons Landscaping and the company offers an assortment of colorful mulch selections to spruce up almost any home, any yard or any business.

Possessing a wealth of horticultural knowledge and years of experience working in all types of Maine landscapes, they can help you transform your property into something any home or business owner can be proud of. Free estimates are offered for all landscaping and snow removal services so don’t wait, call now to be first in line for your spring cleanup and take advantage of the 10 percent discount being offered with this ad.

We are family owned and operated and dedicated to exceeding our customers’ expectations,” Bob said. “We go the extra mile to ensure the job is done right and to your satisfaction.”

To order firewood, request an estimate or learn more about their services, call Taylor’s Firewood and Taylor and Sons Landscaping today. Reach Sandy at 207-799-2179 or call or text Bob at 207-415-2373. They may not be online, but they are on point when it comes to trusted firewood and landscaping services!  <

Friday, February 19, 2021

Business Spotlight: Maine Real Estate Experts Windham

When you’re in the market to buy or sell a home, choosing the right real estate agent can be a daunting task. You want somebody you can trust to look out for your best interests and a company with experience and expertise in all aspects of the profession. Most importantly, you need to find an agent who knows the local area and neighborhoods and understands what kind of home you want to buy or sell. In Windham, Maine Real Estate Experts is the answer to finding the perfect real estate agents.

Locally owned once more, Maine Real Estate Experts at 887 Roosevelt Trail in Windham take pride in their work and demonstrate daily how buying and selling a home or property should be done.

“We are the same great agents doing what we do best to take care of our clients and our local communities,” said Yvonne Myer, a broker and the Windham office owner/manager for Maine Real Estate Experts. “Our agents offer an exceptional real estate experience, personalized service and experienced REALTORS. We cover all aspects of real estate sales including residential, waterfront, seasonal, land, commercial, and investment properties.”

Myer has been a REALTOR since 1999 and purchased the Windham branch of The Maine Real Estate Network in 2017.

“At that time, The Maine Real Estate Network was the largest and best independent real estate company in Maine,” she said. “There were nearly 20 offices at the height of the company in almost every area of the state. It was a great company to work for but unfortunately the wheels of change are always spinning and TMREN, as it became known, was sold to The Bean Group, one of New Hampshire's largest independent real estate companies.”

After a couple years it became apparent to Myer that it was in the best interest of her agents, the company’s clients and the community to work with a Maine- owned company again.

“I made the decision to affiliate my office with Maine Real Estate Experts, founded by Bill Trask,” Myer said. “Our real estate journeys have been similar and I share his beliefs in how to best take care of our agents, our clients and the local communities in which we serve.”

The Maine Real Estate Experts office in Windham now employs 15 agents and now with 4 offices in the state, Maine Real Estate Experts is up to a total of 65 agents overall.

“The company’s goal for the future is to put more local offices in the markets we serve,” Myers said. “We hope to be a market leader, but more importantly local experts that buyers and sellers alike can count on to guide them through one of the most important transactions of their lives.”

She said that with so many brokerages and agents out there to choose from, finding the right REALTOR should not be strenuous task.

“Our agents are experienced and trustworthy. They will help you along the way to ensure a successful transaction,” Myer said. “We can’t say that there are never issues in a real estate transaction, but that is what we are here to do, navigate the complexities and advise you of options when obstacles arise.”

According to Myer, the agents at the Windham branch service a wide geographic area.

“We have an extensive knowledge in the local communities as well as other areas around the state, many of us have grown up in other towns or cities and bring our life experience to our clients,” she said.

Myer advises speaking to an experienced Maine Real Estate Experts agent prior to looking to purchase or sell property.

“We can help get everything in order for a smooth transaction,” she said. “We can help with the pre-qualification process even if there’s a credit issue.

Sellers are encouraged to reach out before putting their home on the market, so our agents can help prepare the house so it can sell and is attractive to potential buyers.”

For more information about Maine Real Estate Experts in Windham, call 207-894-5722, stop by their office or visit them online at www.mainerealestateexperts.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MaineRealEstateExpertsWindham <

Friday, February 12, 2021

Business Spotlight: AllMed Staffing of New England

Exceptional care and a dedication to personalized service is at the heart of what AllMed Staffing of New England offers to the community.

Located at 744 Roosevelt Trail, Suite 301 in Windham, AllMed Staffing of New England provides quality personnel for personal care, respite relief, cooking, shopping, companionship, reading, writing, computer work, and house cleaning in homes. AllMed also provides staff relief for nursing homes, hospitals, doctor’s offices, schools, group homes and assisted living facilities. 

“The best thing that we do is we truly care about people,” said Pam Charles, Manager of Operations and Staff for AllMed Staffing of New England. “We take the extra steps and go above and beyond and everyone we work with appreciates that.”

With highly competitive pricing and around the clock availability, AllMed Staffing of New England has been a dependable and reliable choice for nursing and staffing solutions for more than 30 years and for the past nine years right here in Windham.    

“We are a personable orientated company,” Charles said. “Our clients are our first priority.”

Like many other businesses, the COVID-19 pandemic has posed more than a few challenges for AllMed Staffing of New England, but Charles said they are meeting the challenges head-on and succeeding.

“We are dedicated to keeping our clients and our staff members safe,” she said. “Our top priority is keeping up to date with CDC regulations and ensuring that we do all we can to keep everyone concerned healthy and safe.”

Because of the very nature of what AllMed Staffing of New England does, when the pandemic first struck, the company was faced with shortages of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) but found a supplier in Maine that could help.

“We drove to Brunswick to get it and eventually PPE supplies became plentiful once more,” Charles said. “It was a challenge that we were able to overcome.”

Making sure employees receive regular testing for the virus so they are safe and cleared to work has also been a significant hurdle for the company.

“The testing aspect certainly hasn’t been easy, but we are making it work,” Charles said. “It’s a bit better now, but still a challenge.”

The outreach for AllMed Staffing of New England is not just limited to the Lakes Region.

“Our company is licensed through the State of Maine and New Hampshire,” Charles said. “We work in Maine and New Hampshire. We are available, we care about our client’s needs. We strive to be the best and we are.”

She said that for nursing personnel, AllMed Staffing offers genuine flexibility and dependability right here in the community and has built a solid reputation as a great company to be associated with.

“Our devotion to going above and beyond is what makes us stand out from all the others,” Charles said. “We provide the personal touches that families remember, such as sending a personalized birthday card to each one of the client’s we work with every year.”  

For job seekers, AllMed Staffing of New England offers high-pay, benefits, with jobs offered in homecare, facilities per diem, or travel.

“With over 30 years of experience, we know what different local facilities provide,” Charles said. “We’ll work with you to find the perfect fit.”

For clients, AllMed Staffing of New England provides highly qualified medical staff, stringent screening, staffing for travel or per diem assignments, the ability to choose staffing from many different specialties, and 24/7 on-call support. They know what to look for in a candidate and strive to find just the right person for that particular position.

“AllMed Staffing of New England is committed to consistently providing highly qualified, professional staff to our customers. We are dedicated to excellence in staffing services as we continually strive to exceed the expectations of our customers,” Charles said. “Our mission is based on treating our customers and staff with dignity as we adhere to the principles of integrity, excellence, and dependability at all times. We provide our clients with flexible, cost-effective healthcare staffing solutions, and we provide our healthcare professionals with rewarding jobs.”    

For more information about AllMed Staffing of New England, call 207-894-5833 or at www.allmedne.com or on Facebook at AllMed Staffing of New England. <

 

Friday, February 5, 2021

Nonprofit Spotlight: Polar Dip and Ice Fishing Derby

The calendar may say February and temperatures could dip well below freezing, but that won’t halt the resumption of the annual Polar Dip and Ice Fishing Derby the weekend of Feb. 20 at Raymond Beach.

Both events will have a slightly different look this year as a result of COVID-19 precautions and the Polar Dip will have a new sponsor in the Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce, but it’s all intended to be a spirited good time to raise money for deserving local charitable causes.

As far as the Polar Dip goes, the event resumes in 2021 after there was no Polar Dip last year.

“The Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce has not been part of the event in the past,” said Robin Mullins, executive director of the Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce. “George Bartlett from Busy Bee Laundry in Windham is a member of the Sebago Lakes Rotary Club and wanted to bring the Polar Dip back as part of the Sebago Lakes Rotary Fishing Derby for 2021. He approached me and asked if I would help. I quickly jumped at that and asked if proceeds could benefit the Sebago Lakes Region Chamber's Charitable Trust, or what we call Feed The Need. We contribute annually to the food pantries in the Sebago Lakes Region in Casco, Gray, Naples, New Gloucester, Raymond, Sebago, Standish and Windham and George agreed.”

Mullins said the chamber is excited to be a part of the Polar Dip because all proceeds stay here in the Sebago Lakes Region and they are able to host the festivities despite COVID-19.

“The event is co-hosted by the Sebago Lakes Rotary Club and Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce, it only seems fitting that the monies stay local to the Sebago Lakes Region food pantries,” she said. “People want to get out and it is exciting we are giving folks a chance to get outside and help fight food insecurity in our region at the same time.”

Because of some virus restrictions, Mullins said they only have spots for 12 teams for the Polar Dip and spots are filling fast.

“So if anyone wants to join the fun, they need to sign up ASAP,” Mullins said. “In order to participate, jumpers need to get at least one donation (sponsor forms are on the chamber website) for Feed The Need. There will be prizes donated by Hannaford Supermarkets for teams raising the most funds and for the best team costumes.”

She said because of limited space, the chamber does not expect donations to exceed more than $5,000.

“We will also be limiting the amount of people viewing the event in-person. We will have jumpers videoed and will have on Facebook Live so family and friends can watch brave jumpers take the plunge,” Mullins said. “We do have other alternatives if people want to give, but do not jump into the frigid Sebago Lake in mid-February.”

People can gather sponsors and video themselves and post videos on the chamber’s Facebook page.

“Or they can give directly to Feed The Need via our website,” she said.

Information regarding Feed The Need and participation in the Polar Dip or other winter challenges can be found at www.SebagoLakesChamber.com.

The Ice Fishing Derby was the idea of Sebago Lake Rotary Club member Tom Noonan in 2001 and in cooperation with the Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Department. It has grown to become the rotary club’s largest fundraising effort and has supported hundreds of charities over the past 19 years donating over $1 million in that span.

In 2014, under the leadership of Rotarian, Toby Pennels, the derby gained notoriety as one of only four derbies in the United States to be featured in a new television program being filmed for the National Geographic Channel and ran in June 2014.

This year’s derby welcomes a new Gold Sponsor, General Dynamics/BIW and official media sponsor, Channel 8 WMTW | Maine’s CW for 2021. The derby will be held Feb. 20 to Feb. 21 and the grand prize will be a 2021 ATV purchased from Windham Powersports, and every entry will qualify to win even if they do not fish.

Proceeds will benefit the Salvation Army, food pantries and other Rotary focused charities. The club is also adding an Ice shack contest this year and a 50/50 raffle to benefit wildlife conservation, with details on the icefishingderby.com website. <

Friday, January 29, 2021

Business Spotlight: NuLife Wellness Center


Sara Dayon and her husband, Ryan Dayon, opened the NuLife  Wellness Center in Windham so that everyone could experience affordable treatment and healing close to home in a comfortable setting. 

Located in the same plaza as Planet Fitness at 759 Roosevelt Trail, NuLife Wellness Center offers an array of different services ranging from regenerative medicine to aesthetic services. Patients can come in to receive services under one roof for chronic pain, weight loss, general health, or for treatment of fine lines and wrinkles.

“We love that we can offer patients regenerative therapies, therapies that will actually heal and repair vs. applying a band-aid like traditional medicine,” Dayon said. “We also offer numerous different therapies under one roof. We offer services from head to toe and are an all-encompassing wellness center treating the entire body.”

NuLife Wellness Center opened at the end of December and will host a grand opening celebration during the first week of February (Feb. 1 to Feb. 6) with raffles and everyone that comes in will receive a $25 gift certificate to the clinic. As a Certified Nurse Practitioner, Dayon has worked in the field of medicine for the past 10 years.

“I previously worked in the Intensive Care Unit as an RN taking care of patients at their worst. I became a Nurse Practitioner to help people be their best so that they could avoid those ICU stays,” Dayon said. “After working in traditional medicine, I saw that the traditional medicine model was broken and only offered a band-aid for most medical conditions. I believe in restoring health and actually healing the body so that patients can get their lives back.”

According to Dayon, the best thing about NuLife Wellness Center is that it provides an alternative to traditional medicine, fixes problems and is a more personalized approach to medicine.

“We offer an array of different services. One of the therapies we are most proud of is the sanexas therapy for the treatment of chronic pain and neuropathy,” Dayon said. “This is not a TENS unit, over 30 studies have shown it to be successful at improving patient’s symptoms by 70 to 80 percent. The best part is that it is covered by Medicare and most commercial insurances. We offer stem cell and exosome therapy for joint pain. Exosomes have also been shown to be beneficial in facial aesthetics and for hair loss when combined with microneedling as well.”


She said that NuLife Wellness Center also administers neurotoxin injections like botox or xeomin, microneedling, as well as other facial aesthetic services.

“We are constantly adding to our line of services. Another service that we offer is IV hydration and vitamin injections. These have numerous uses from weight loss to repair and recovery, to boosting immunity, anti-aging and more,” Dayon said. “We have weight loss packages as well as wellness packages that combine different therapies for one package price. Another service that would be great for people to try is our chromatherapy medical sauna.”

With three employees and only using products that are sourced from reputable companies and compounding pharmacies, NuLife Wellness Center is at the forefront in Windham for alternative medicine and strives to stay ahead of current trends and new treatments.

“More and more people are utilizing neurotoxin to prevent fine lines or treat current ones,” Dayon said. “Another popular trend is the use of microneedling with PRF or exosomes for thinning hair. The results are amazing. IV hydration and the use of vitamin injections is starting to be a popular wellness trend. Much of the food we eat does not contain the necessary vitamins and minerals and our body does a poor job at absorbing oral supplements. By getting an IV or injection, the nutrients are readily absorbed and utilized by the body.”

The cost for services is highly competitive and fair. NuLife Wellness Center also has packages and bundles for some services and a robust referral program for its aesthetic services as well as monthly specials.

“We have services for everyone, and I encourage people to look at our website or stop in to see what we can do for them,” Dayon said, “especially for those suffering from chronic pain and neuropathy. We offer legitimate therapies that have helped people get their lives back all over the country. It’s amazing.”

NuLife Wellness Center is open Mondays through Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturdays by appointment only. Call 207-893-8918 or visit them online at www.nulifewellness.org. <

Friday, January 22, 2021

Business Spotlight: Lee's Family Trailer Sales and Service

Pandemic or not, business has been booming for the past few years at Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service in Windham.

 With dozens of experienced staff members and skilled technicians and more than 500 Recreational Vehicles to choose from on site, those seeking to explore the great outdoors in comfort and style from across the United States have made Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service a go-to destination for RV sales and service in New England.Owner Dan Craffey says the growth of his business has been nothing short of astounding and in 2020 alone, Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and service sold a record 1,000 RVs, more than triple the 300 RVs sold at the facility in 2017.

“We have the best brands and have assembled a team of the most knowledgeable employees,” Craffey said. “We have a full line of parts and service what we sell.”

According to Craffey, Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service has been in business since 1984 and is a Sebago Lakes Region fixture at its expansive 480 Roosevelt Trail location in Windham.

“I love coming to work here every day,” Craffey said. “I love our customers, they come from all walks of life and of all ages. We offer high quality RVs from the best manufacturers in the business and we aim to make it a fun place to buy an RV from and an enjoyable experience.”     

Demand for RVs continues to grow as many have discovered that they can be a home away from home and can provide all the comforts of home while exploring Maine and places in America that others only dream of traveling to.

“We match RVs to our customers and teach them how to use them and harness all of the new features and new technology these new vehicles offer,” Craffey said.

As an exclusive dealer for Winnebago Motor Homes sales and service, Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service has an extensive inventory of vehicles ready for the open road at highly competitive pricing.

“Our service center has been expanded and we’re open year-round from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week,” Craffey said. “We specialize in RV repair service and have 14 service bays. That enables us to provide our customers with quick, expert and efficient service to get you back on the road in no time.”

Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service also takes pride in having a complete line of parts and accessories for those wishing to work on their own vehicles.

And the business also includes an excellent rental program that includes motorhomes and travel trailers to fit almost any budget.

According to Craffey, the typical Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service customer loves camping, craves adventure and enjoys traveling to scenic places. Whether using an RV on the weekends or holidays or if it’s a fulltime residence, these individuals experience a sense of freedom and take in rugged landscapes and scenic views without spending huge amounts on costly hotels or airfare. They can be used in all seasons and the family pets can go along with you on your journeys.

“We can train anyone how to drive an RV and no special license is required,” Craffey said. It’s simply a great way to explore the sights of Maine or anywhere in the United States.”

RVs are exploding in popularity because they are affordable and perhaps the safest form of travel offered in America today. They can be customized and driven to remote campsite locations or on interstate highways to vacation spots or even visiting out-of-state relatives.

For more information about Lee’s Family Trailer Sales and Service, call 207-892-8308. Visit their website at https://www.leesfamilytrailer.com/ or look for them on Facebook under Lee’s Family Trailer Sales & Service.

 

Since purchasing Lee's Family Trailer Sales and Service in Windham in 2017, owner Dan Craffey
has expanded both the service department to 14 bays, along with the inventory. These changes have
proven to be successful with a record number of sales in 2020 of over 1,000 vehicles sold.
SUBMITTED PHOTO