Friday, December 28, 2018

Business Spotlight on Hello, Doggie! Daycare Gayle Plummer

If the words “Hello Dolly!” bring fun, happy thoughts and feelings to mind, then all pet owners will be glad to know there is such an experience for their dogs right here in the community.  Hello, Doggie! Daycare is very much like a fun, safe and stimulating theater production or an upbeat summer camp experience for your dog. Located on 1311 Roosevelt Trail, Raymond, new owner Shannon Oliver guarantees that your pet will have a positive and healthy experience when away from home. Whether your pet is there for daycare or training – they will enjoy lots of love, lots of fun and some very serious care.

Shannon has worked professionally with dogs for the last five years in both daycare and boarding environments. She worked at Jordan Bay Dog Daycare, at the same location, when the opportunity came for her to take over the business. Shannon’s mission statement comes from her belief that dogs deserve a safe, healthy and stimulating social environment.

“My dogs are the largest inspiration for me – I wanted to create a safe, stimulating environment and offer a service where I would want my dogs to spend their time, if I were ever away. A place I would feel confident in. What would I want my dogs to do during the day or overnight? These questions are what really fueled our policies.”

Shannon’s goal is to set a higher standard for her pet daycare/boarding facility. She firmly believes that, “. . . your dog deserves 24/7 supervision when you are away” and maintains a dog-to-staff ratio of 10:1. Staff sleeping overnight in the same room as the clients’ un-kenneled dogs is a service unlike any other in the area. “We strive to provide an environment for dogs that is second only to their real home! We offer individualized care to meet your dogs’ needs and update owners as often as they like with photos and videos of their dogs’ stay. My business goals center around providing the community with a place they can trust their dogs to be loved and cared for in their absence or during their work day; all while doing our best to strengthen the owner-pet bond.”

Shannon Oliver and friend
As part of the team, Shannon has added Certified Trainer, Chris Ford (ABCDT and AKC CGC & S.T.A.R. Puppy Evaluator) to the team. “We are able to provide both private training and group lessons to dog owners in our community. We are offering the AKC S.T.A.R. Puppy Course as well as three classes that, when completed in succession, prepare owners and their dogs for the Canine Good Citizen Test. We simply want to offer better services to all dogs out there. I would like to see our training offerings continue to expand in the future,” Shannon says.

“I am a huge fan of the arts, having performed with local community theaters since high school.  A couple of my recent appearances were as Carrie White in Lyric Music Theater’s production of “Carrie” and as Jo March in their production of “Little Women”. “Hello, Dolly!” was the first community theater musical I was part of through Lake Region Community Theater and it changed my life for the better. My two largest loves are animals and theater. When I came up with our name, it was the best combination of the two things. I really wanted a unique name and setup to separate us from other dog centers. I do have dreams of Hello, Doggie! one day being able to contribute largely to the local arts community.”

Hello, Doggie! Daycare website demonstrates Shannon’s love of the arts, as she has incorporated many little theatrical features into her business. For example, Shannon has named her potential dog guests as “cast members”; her pricing is described as “Show” (full day of daycare), “Matinee” (half day of daycare) and “One Act” (up to 2.5 hours of daycare). She refers to her team as “Stage Hands” and she sincerely wants all of her “cast” to enjoy their experience.

Certainly that seems to be the case. Shannon requires an “audition” for all potential guests. This is a half-day visit to the daycare so all new dogs can become acclimated to the new environment, the staff and other dogs. Shannon offers flexible pricing and package deals along with combo-pricing for multiple dogs. All dogs must have up-to-date vaccinations and all pets are to have DHLPP (distemper combo), Rabies and Bordetella.

When one enters the building, it is immediately obvious that the sounds you hear are happy, positive, fun sounds coming from all the dogs. There was no whining, crying or aggressive barking to be heard; only lots of friendly barks and very good energy emanating through the building.

To contact Hello Doggie! Daycare please visit their website at:
Email: or call: 655-6521. Hours are: Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Friday, December 21, 2018

Business Spotlight on Compass Concierge and Companions, LLC Lorraine Glowczak

Whether you are an older working professional who has undergone extensive surgery and needs temporary assistance with meal preparation, getting to the symphony or your book club gathering or if your needs require more support in everyday living activities, Compass Concierge and Companions, LLC is there to provide dignified and respectful concierge and personal care services.

“Our goal is to reduce stress and increase joy, no matter the personal circumstance,” stated owner Paula Banks.

Although Compass Concierge and Companions, based out of Raymond and established in the fall of 2018, is a private, non-medical, home care business providing concierge, companion and personal care services, its business model is different from most others.

Banks, who has provided geriatric care management and healthcare consulting in Southern Maine for over 25 years and continues to do so, realized that she wanted to provide home care services as well, BUT she wanted to do it differently.

“There is a great need for these services and there are many excellent home care agencies out there that do a great job and which I continue to recommend. But I wanted to own a company where the employees were treated with the same dignity and respect as our clients. And I wanted our clients to benefit from the highest level of customer service and skill from our employees.

It was important to Banks to change the reality of home care services. How? “Our staff is hand selected and highly compensated. Our employees are paid 50% of what is charged to the client.” Banks said.

Compass charges more than most home care agencies. “I knew it mattered to me that our staff receive a livable wage, but I thought the higher rate would be a tough sell for my clients.” Instead Banks was astounded by her clients’ reaction. “I have received feedback from my clients that they are more than willing to pay a higher rate to know that their caregiver is well compensated.”

Other ways Compass is different? You will never see a Want Ad asking for applications. “I only hire people I have either worked with personally in the past and I know will do the job I expect or from recommendations from those workers I trust,” Banks began. “I want to go to sleep at night confident that my clients are provided the safest and best care available. And it is never lost on me and my staff what a privilege it is to be allowed into someone’s home.”

Banks, a licensed social worker who is a certified geriatric care manager and aging life care specialist, has over 30 years of clinical experience working with seniors, their families and caregivers. She was named a Fellow of the Maine Gerontological Society of Maine in 2011 and is the past chair of the Board of Trustees at 75 State Street, an independent and assisted living community in Portland.

A major proponent of inter-generational learning, Banks has worked in collaboration with high schools and the University of New England’s Occupational Therapy program to increase understanding among the generations and to turn young people on to the idea that working with elders can be life changing, inspirational and fun.
Owner, Paula Banks

The services Compass offers include, but are not limited to, the following:

Errands, gift buying, shopping,
Making reservations and appointments
Planning and accompanying to social outings
Pet Care
Supportive conversation
Encouraging, assisting and partaking in hobbies and activities
Memoir writing, reading, arts and crafts, game playing
Dressing and bathing
Daily life activities
Laundry and meal planning
2 to 24-hour supervision

“Our mission is to take the burden off our clients and their caregivers with love, passion, dignity, respect and fun so they can live their best life!”

For more information, contact Paula Banks at 415-8990 or peruse the website at

Friday, December 14, 2018

Business Spotlight: Pratt Abbott Garment Care Lorraine Glowczak

On-site wedding garment preparations, alterations and repairs, free American Flag cleaning, free pick-up and delivery, wash/dry/fold and, of course, dry cleaning services, are just a few of the multitude of amenities offered by Pratt Abbott Garment Care. With 12 locations in the greater Portland area including Windham at 835 Roosevelt Trail, the locally owned dry cleaning company has been providing garment care in Southern Maine since 1944.

This year, Pratt Abbott opened a brand-new Express Laundry Center in Windham. The upgraded facility has 76 new, state-of-the-art washers and dryers that make doing laundry a quick and pleasant task. Large-capacity machines are great for large families, or for oversized loads like comforters. The Windham store also offers free WiFi and free coffee. But the most exciting convenience for customers is the mobile payment system powered by Laundry Boss. This futuristic system lets you use a kiosk or download an app to operate your washers and dryers right on your phone or tablet. No more cards or coins! You can easily use it to add more time or change settings, and it will alert you when your laundry is done. Windham is one of two Pratt Abbott stores to debut Laundry Boss this year.

Innovation is important to Pratt Abbott, which has also invested in the most eco-friendly dry cleaning processes available to become the greenest cleaner in Maine. From using nontoxic cleaning agents to recycling to reducing its water and electricity footprint, Pratt Abbott uses cutting-edge technology to ensure sustainability. With this environmentally friendly amenity, one can expect their dresses, suits, sweaters and other clothing returned in a softer and cleaner condition than before without that "dry cleaning smell." It is important to note that Pratt Abbott does not outsource their cleaning and the clothing never leaves their care. All dry cleaning is done in-house.

Pratt Abbott is committed to quality at all levels of operation. Since the business’ inception 74 years ago, Pratt Abbott has been an independent and family owned business. It has only changed ownership three times, with the Machesney family as the current proprietors. “I purchased Pratt Abbott in 1991 from a family who bought the business in approximately 1956 from the original owners,” explained David Machesney, stating he enjoys continuing the tradition established by the original and local families of Pratt and Abbott.

David Machesney
This family dedication to service includes an unmatched level of pride in one’s work is catching and filters down to the Pratt Abbott staff. As a result, the garment cleaning company has recently received several honors, including the SBA’s Maine Family Owned Business Award and The Knot’s Hall of Fame for their wedding garment care services. “It’s a testament of how well our staff perform their responsibilities and take pride in the services we offer,” Machesney stated about the trained professionals. “There are very few of these awards given out each year.”

The wedding garment service not only includes wedding dress restoration and pre-ceremony cleaning but also includes steaming or pressing the wedding dress onsite at the wedding or other location. This service is not only offered for the bride to be, but for the entire wedding party as well.

Additional services at Pratt Abbott include:
·         Shirt services
·         Free seasonal storage
·         Household dry cleaning and washing for rugs, feather pillows, curtains, comforters, etc.
·         Alterations and repairs
·         Free delivery

Pratt Abbott’s free delivery service is of particular interest to busy professionals, senior citizens, new families, and others who are looking to save time and improve quality of life. Rather than dropping and picking up your clothes at the store, Pratt Abbott will come to your house or office for free. It’s a remarkable service reminiscent of “the milk man” and other old-fashioned, small town conveniences.
The company also gives back to the community in a variety of ways. One service Pratt Abbott provides is free dry-cleaning services for the American Flag. “Pratt Abbott has been offering free flag cleaning for 30 years,” Machesney stated. “The flags can be owned by military personnel, schools or by a private individual – if someone owns an American Flag, we clean it for free.”

Pratt Abbott is also known for its Coats for Kids program that was launched in coordination with the Salvation Army in 1983. This program provides gently used winter coats to low-income children in Maine. “If you can easily help a child keep warm in the winter, why wouldn’t you?” Machesney stated when asked about this program.

Machesney is not only proud of the services the company provides or the giving back to the community it offers, but he also speaks fondly of the staff.  “We recently had someone retire after 37 years of working for us,” Machesney began. “She was like family to me and, although I know it was time for her to retire, I was very sad to see her leave.”

He feels this way about all staff who work diligently, giving Pratt Abbott the highly recognized reputation, preferred by many for the company’s dry-cleaning services in Southern Maine. Pratt Abbott is always looking for dedicated, positive and talented employees. For those interested in applying and becoming a part of the Pratt Abbott family, can do so by learning more about the application process at There is a $100 sign-on bonus after 120 days.

To learn more about the services Pratt Abbott offers, peruse their website at or contact the Windham location, open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., at 892-5379.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Business Spotlight on Skin Medical Aesthetics and Wellness Lorraine Glowczak

Harvard-trained and board-certified Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Anthony Perrone, recently followed his love of the arts and combined it with his other passion of providing minimally invasive aesthetic procedures by opening his restorative medical practice - Skin Medical Aesthetics and Wellness.

Located at 472 Roosevelt Trail in Windham, Dr. Perrone offers a variety of safe and scientific based skin care services in a medical setting that is a first and only in the Lakes Region area.

“As a doctor who lives in Windham, I became aware that there are many individuals in the greater Lakes Region area who are looking for services such as Hydrafacials®, Botox®, as well as other medical skin care needs but have to travel to Portland in order to receive them,” explained Dr. Perrone. “I decided after years being a practicing plastic surgeon in Augusta that I could do more for my community by offering services in the greater Windham area.”

At Skin Medical Aesthetics and Wellness (SKIN), there are a variety of services from which to choose. Whether it is Botox® or fillers, high end multifunctional Hydrafacials®, Coolsculpting® (non-surgical treatment for tissue reduction), Kybella® (a targeted tissue reduction treatment) or Insta-lift® (facelift), SKIN offers amenities in a safe medical environment along with along with a complimentary educational consultation prior to the service of choice.

“Sometimes clients requests procedures that do not necessarily address their needs,” stated Dr. Perrone. “I educate my clients, so they make the best decision based upon their circumstances and preferences. I believe informing my clients is the best way that they fully enhance their lives so they feel comfortable and confident.”

To make important health care decisions, the client needs to be aware of the procedures they are electing to undergo. I’m here to support people in their journey to achieve their ultimate vision of themselves in their skin.

Dr. Perrone is happy to show you around his facility and highlight his various procedures rooms where a variety of skin enhancing techniques are performed. One room includes a Hydrafacial® machine which provides a comprehensive skin care experience. “It’s not only the facial skin that we consider,” began Perrone. “The applications of the machine can extend onto the entire body.”

Dr. Anthony Perrone
There is also a CoolSculpting® room “This form of therapy freezes stubborn tissue while protecting the skin. It’s perfect for the person who has tissue resistant to diet and exercise.” Perrone explained but reiterated that this therapy is not a substitution for nutritious eating and regular exercise.

Perrone also stated that they have provided facial services for brides and bridesmaids. “Recently, we had a bride and her bridesmaid’s come in for a before wedding experience. The bride and her bridesmaids each had a facial and then sat in our conference room to relax prior to the big event.”
But aesthetics are not the only focus at SKIN. Athletes can also benefit from a detoxifying lymphatic treatment to promote recovery. “This therapy will help to accelerate recovery between workouts or events.” stated Dr. Perrone.

Dr. Perrone will customize a step wise approach so clients will achieve their desired outcome. “I will encourage individuals to stand up and stand out. I will provide an individual with the education to make an informed and personalized decision that is best for them” he stated.

He is also committed to the needs of the community. “Although my office hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., I do my best to accommodate those who cannot make those hours by accepting appointments outside of the normal business schedule,” said Perrone.”

For more information about SKIN services and to see many results from real people just like you, follow Dr. Perrone and Skin Medical Aesthetics and Wellness on Facebook and Instagram, call 207-572-1618 or email at