Friday, December 31, 2021

Business Spotlight: Southpaw Meat Market

With years of experience and an emphasis on providing quality products to the community direct from local farmers, the owners of the new Southpaw Meat Market believe customers will soon realize they have a new favorite shop in Raymond.

Nichole and Leon Sargent own Southpaw Meat Market at 1233 Roosevelt Trail, Unit 2 in Raymond, formerly known as PrimeCut Meat Market, and offer fresh, frozen, and cured meats as well as poultry products and locally sourced items. They also have honey, cheeses, maple syrup, whoopie pies, and their own line of rubs and spices with many more items added weekly.

“The most significant aspect of our business is our knowledge of the industry and our relationships with our producers,” said Nichole Sargent. “We look to source quality products. We run a USDA facility and have carried over the standards of operation to Southpaw Meat Market.”

The shop opened in November and is a natural progression for the couple, who also own and operate the highly successful Windham Butcher Shop. Nichole Sargent’s background as a longtime human services provider and as an agricultural enthusiast, allow her to take an active leadership role for the business, while her husband, Leon Sargent, has more than 30 years of experience in the industry and his strong relationships with suppliers and producers have led to a meaningful understanding of the craft of butchering.

Their dedication to operational standards, cleanliness, and sound production practices are essential to the success of Southpaw Meat Market, the couple says.    

“We are passionate about wanting to provide our customers with truly outstanding products and to incorporate local farmers and producers here in Maine as much as we can,” Nichole Sargent said. “We love educating our customers and sharing our knowledge with them.”

According to Sargent, Southpaw Meat Market will focus on quality and offering the finest cuts of meat.

“We will not try to compete with the big conglomerates as it is impossible in our industry to do so in this ‘pandemic world.’ I don’t see others as competitors, I see them as reinforcements,” she said. “In order for small businesses to be successful, we have to work together.

I have been advocating for businesses like ours to have better options to health care, mental health services and so much more, I am an advocate for collaboration. Don’t get me wrong, I am fierce and very competitive, however, I am also truly passionate about our industry, the future of farming and sustaining Maine’s small businesses, so we need to work together. We want to be the best, not the cheapest.”

Sargent said that Southpaw Meat Market works closely with Colt Knight, Assistant Extension and State Livestock Specialist Professor at the University of Maine’s Cooperative Extension Program.

“He has been a great asset to our other business, and we are already in the works to create an educational piece for the market,” she said. “We will offer choices and suggest options to our customers. We will be sharing recipes and have exciting plans for the market in the future.”

Because the previous owner was so successful, the transition has been tough for some customers, but Sargent said she and her husband believe if given an opportunity to earn their trust and business, customers will come to appreciate the quality and high standards that Southpaw Meat Market will achieve.

“The previous owner had a very successful business and did an amazing job, and her shoes will be hard to fill,” Sargent said. “Kindness goes a long way as we learn each of the customer’s needs, likes and personalities.”

She said Southpaw Meat Market’s biggest hurdles are finding skilled labor, some supply chain issues, and obtaining the inventory they need to fill the meat case for their customers.

“When we say, we can’t get it, it’s not that we don’t want your business, it’s that we know we cannot get what you are asking for,” she said. “We carefully source our products, and we keep our hand on the pulse of the protein industry.”

She said for Southpaw Meat Market to become successful, it will take a measure of collaboration and communication with customers.

“We believe in treating people with dignity and respect,” Sargent said. “It takes a community to have a successful business, and everyone has to work together. Our employees are learning and growing. We will have hiccups, but remember we are humans, not machines.”

For more information about Southpaw Meat Market, visit  or call 207-655-2646 and look for their new website coming soon. <

Friday, December 17, 2021

Business Spotlight: The Movement Lab Collective

Parkour is taking the world by storm and now everyone has an opportunity to try this training movement which focuses on body and mind. The Movement Lab Collective has opened in Windham and specializes in Parkour training. 

According to Edward Whitehead, The Movement Lab Collective owner, Parkour uses natural, free and effective movements to overcome obstacles. It includes running, climbing, jumping, balancing, swinging, rolling and many other movements that participants find most convenient for any situation.

“As a kid I was fascinated with martial arts movies and video games,” Whitehead said. “I had an innate desire to explore. I stumbled across some YouTube Parkour videos and thought this is for real, it wasn’t movie magic. A switch in my head clicked and I figured I could learn how to do it.”

At the age of 18, Whitehead traveled to the French Alps to a town called Morzine with a group called Parkour Generations for his first formal training in the movement. Since then, he decided to make Parkour his career and opened The Movement Lab Creative in the Windham Mall on Dec. 10.

The most challenging aspect of opening a business to train participants in Parkour in Maine was finding just the right facility, Whitehead said.

“We spent a lot of time scouting locations as the specifications for Parkour are quite specific and we needed adequate ceiling height,” he said. “We needed someplace easily accessible and with good foot traffic. To find a space with all those boxes checked was a huge challenge.”

Whitehead said he was pleased to find a 6,000-foot facility with 20-foot ceilings in the Windham Mall to open The Movement Lab Collective as one of the first Parkour training sites to be established in Maine.

“It is close enough to draw participants from Portland, Gray, Raymond, Oxford, and New Gloucester,” Whitehead said. “Being able to reach a wider area helps out in that respect.”

He said the most important thing he wants the community to know about Parkour is that anybody can do it.

“It’s all about step-by-step incremental progression of developing skill sets,” Whitehead said. “You can take it as far as you want, and the sport is evolving.”

The best thing about Parkour is that it’s fun, he said.

“You’re able to move your body creatively and practically,” Whitehead said. “You develop a skill set to whip you body into shape quickly.”

Whitehead said that in Parkour, the world around you is perceived as a huge playground in which you have to find new ways to move through your environment quickly and efficiently. It is a full-body workout that improves your body awareness and coordination at the same time.

The movement now known as Parkour originated from a French military training method and evolved into a sport that emphasizes smoothly overcoming obstacles within a participant's path by adjusting the participant’s movements to the surroundings they encounter.

Setting up The Movement Lab Collective after finding the right facility to locate it in took some time.

“It actually took about six weeks to build,” Whitehead said. “What we set out to do is to create a space that is authentic to the Parkour experience.”

With a staff of four, The Movement Lab Collective is now taking booking for Parkour classes and options for membership. It is offering an introductory promotion for the rest of December for just $50 for two classes and open gym and Whitehead said anyone who signs up in January will receive a 15 percent discount. An array of other special pricing is also available.

The Movement Lab Collective can be found at 795 Roosevelt Trail, Unit 14 inside the Windham Mall. It is open from 3 to 8 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday; noon to 8 p.m. Wednesday; noon to 6 p.m. Friday; and 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. On weekends from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. birthday celebrations and parties are available for bookings at the facility.

Call The Movement Lab Collective at 207-572-4000 to see for yourself what Parkour is all about. Visit them online at or find them on Facebook at The Movement Lab Collective. <

Friday, December 10, 2021

Business Spotlight: Spectrum

Spectrum plans to double in size, hiring an additional 175 Customer Service Representative positions currently supporting Spectrum Mobile™ customers at its Spectrum Mobile Call Center in Portland, now through the end of 2022. The positions are part of the call center’s transition from working with TV customers to specialized support of Spectrum Mobile™.

Spectrum Mobile Customer Service Representatives provide comprehensive service, including billing, account management, activation services and technical support. These roles offer career progression opportunities and robust benefits, including competitive hourly wages starting at $18 an hour, with a shift differential for evening work hours, as part of Charter’s commitment to a $20 minimum starting wage in 2022.

“Spectrum Mobile customer service roles offer career opportunities to hard-working local talent,” said Joe Ploof, Vice President of Mobile Customer Service for Spectrum. “Over the last two years, we have added hundreds of career defining positions to our community. We are continuing to hire to support the fastest-growing mobile provider in the country.”

An open job fair for the positions will be held on Thursday, Dec. 16, from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Spectrum’s Mobile Call Center, located at 901 Washington Ave., Suite 300 in Portland.

Interested applicants will have the opportunity to speak with members of the Spectrum team about the Customer Service Representative position and answer any additional questions about the company. Applicants are welcome to bring an updated resume with them for submission, and from there, the applicant interview and hiring process will begin. 

Spectrum provides comprehensive health benefits, and for the past nine years, has absorbed the full annual cost increase of medical, dental and vision coverage. The company also offers a market-leading retirement plan, with a 401(k) that matches the first 6 percent\% of employee contributions, plus a Retirement Accumulation Plan with an additional 3% company contribution, for which most employees are eligible. Spectrum employees can receive up to $5,250 per year in education assistance, as well as complimentary and discounted Spectrum services. To find out more or to apply, please visit and search keyword: ‘mobile’ for customer service job.

Charter is committed to diversity and inclusion in every aspect of the business. To exceed customers' expectations, we strive to deliver high-quality products and services by embracing the unique perspectives and experiences of our employees and partners.

We are proud of our workforce reflecting the full range of diversity and abilities in the markets we serve, and are actively working to promote diversity at every level of our organization. We foster an inclusive environment where employees feel respected, engaged and able to reach their full potential.

Charter Communications, Inc. was founded in 1993, and while the company has grown dramatically over the past two decades, our roots take us back to the pioneering days of cable. What began as mom-and-pop businesses in the late 1940s with cable strung from hilltop to homes has morphed into the advanced, high-tech cable industry that Charter is at the forefront of today.

With a network spanning more than 750,000 miles, Charter serves more than 31 million customers in 41 states through the Spectrum brand. Our vast infrastructure helps fuel innovation and delivers a robust offering of advanced services including faster broadband speeds, better video products, voice service, and a mobile offering to support customers’ on-the-go. Charter is a leading broadband connectivity company positioned to provide innovative services at a great value to meet customers connectivity needs today and into the future.

More information about Charter can be found at <

Friday, December 3, 2021

Business Spotlight: Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness

To better serve the community, Sticky Bud Farms in Windham has expanded and now offers both a medical marijuana dispensary and a new showroom next door that includes an oxygen bar, a vast array of gifts and products and soon will have massage and acupuncture services available.

“We’re really trying to provide personalized healing by creating the new Glass and Wellness facility,” said Dave Whitten, Sticky Bud Farms owner. “We treat each customer with integrity and compassion and share our expertise and knowledge of cannabis products with those who are in pain and suffering.”

Located at 815 Roosevelt Trail Unit 4 in North Windham, both the Sticky Bud Farms Medical Dispensary and Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness provide many valuable services to promote wellness and healing.

In August, the Sticky Bud Farms Medical Dispensary moved into a luxurious suite adjacent to its original location, which has since been remodeled and renovated into Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness and features a state-of-the-art oxygen bar, a complete cannabis product showroom and a new massage room. Proponents of oxygen bars say that the use of purified oxygen can help increase energy levels; improve mood; improve concentration; improve sports performance; reduce stress; provide relief for headaches and migraines; and promotes better sleep.

“We’re very excited to open this new facility,” Whitten said. “The plan is to offer acupuncture, acupressure, reiki, cupping and deep tissue massage here very soon,” Whitten said. “We also have a complete line of cannabis-related products and gifts available all the time here.”

Whitten knows far too well how debilitating physical pain and suffering can be and says he himself was able to overcome his own pain through cannabis. It changed his life, and he said that he firmly believes that cannabis can alleviate the pain of others too and that’s why he established Sticky Bud Farms in 2013.

“I gave my life to being a medical cannabis caregiver and it gave me a life back,” Whitten said. “I was in pain for years but once I started using cannabis my life turned around.”

Sticky Bud Farms became the first cannabis shop to open in North Windham in 2017 and currently has eight employees, including Whitten’s wife, Judy, whom he credits for her steadfast support of his desire to help others overcome their pain.

“We truly value our patients over profits and that is why we take the time to sit down with every patient to learn about their specific needs and make sure that they find the right product to suit their unique needs,” Whitten said. “We believe that our compassion and medical cannabis can help heal many ailments in our world today.”

According to Whitten, the Sticky Bud Farms  business continues to explore innovative ways to provide healing and relief to its customers and doesn’t plan to stop with the creation of the new 2,000-square-foot Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness Center.

“We just finished construction of a kitchen where we hope to be able to offer a full line of fresh-baked edibles and medical-use edibles for customers soon,” Whitten said. “Our goal is to offer a whole holistic approach to feeling better.”

He said that eventually he hopes to be able to offer educational presentations to the community at the new Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness Center about cannabis.

The Sticky Bud Farms Glass and Wellness Center is for everyone age 21 and older and no medical card is needed.

“As always, we’re here to listen and guide you in the use of cannabis products,” Whitten said. “Our dispensary has the widest selection in Maine of cannabis and cannabis products for those with a valid medical card and identification. Our biggest reward is someone coming in for a few months on a walker in severe pain and you get to see a transformation and the relief they’ve experienced. That’s what it’s truly all about for me.”

By virtue of its outstanding customer service, Sticky Bud Farms was voted as the Best Medical Dispensary in New England for 2021.

For more information about Sticky Bud Farms, call 207-893-8200 or visit them online at They are also on Facebook, Instagram and Leafly. <