Relevant Roasters available at Whole Foods

Relevant Roasters, Memphis’ newest specialty coffee brand, is now available on the shelves of Whole Foods in Memphis.
Owned by Jimmy Lewis, Relevant Roasters (facebook.com/RelevantRoasters) opened on the corner of Broad Avenue and Tillman Street in mid-September. The first order of Relevant Roasters landed on the shelves of local Whole Foods stores last week.
Since completing his first batches of coffee, Lewis has hosted open houses for sampling and distributed to wholesalers and retailers, including Tart Coffee Shop & Bakery and Miss Cordelia’s on Mud Island.

East Buntyn neighborhood gearing up for ArtWalk

The East Buntyn neighborhood is gearing up once again for the East Buntyn Artwalk.

The sixth annual version of the festival that celebrates art and community kicks off April 18 (rain date, April 19), with homeowners hosting regional artists in their front yards. Those open-air galleries will display and sell work by neighborhood residents, as well as pieces by artists from around the Mid-South, representing an expected pool of over 60 artists.

St. James Church at 461 S. Prescott will serve as ArtWalk’s hub, hosting live music, a silent auction, food trucks and more. There also will be a silent auction tent, live entertainment and food trucks like Lickety Split and Rock’n Dough.

Sponsoring partners for the free event are University Neighborhood Development Corporation, Highland Area Renewal Corporation and St. James Anglican Church.

Additional festival information and Artist Applications can be obtained by going online to www.eastbuntynartwalk.com or by visiting East Buntyn ArtWalk on Facebook or Twitter.

Here’s a video of last year’s event:

More on the Cheesecake Factory and Memphis

Shawn Massey, partner with The Shopping Center Group LLC, which previously worked to bring The Cheesecake Factory to the Ridgeway Trace development at Poplar Avenue and Interstate 240, said the restaurant chain’s location inside Wolfchase Galleria makes perfect  sense.

“Wolfchase is the strongest regional trade area in the Memphis MSA,” Massey said.  “This is evident by the fact that Ikea recently chose the area for its first Tennessee store.”

“Cheesecake Factory has traditionally been a part of many malls and with Simon being the largest mall owner in the world the relationship between the two companies is quite strong,” said Massey.

“Cheesecake Factory knows the mall is successful in attracting visitors from the greater MSA and beyond,” he said.  “A store in East Memphis or Germantown may not be as far reaching.  That is open for debate. ”

Cheesecake Factory is a high performing retailer and would be considered a catalyst-type retailer that attracts people from a greater distance than the typical restaurant.  It will appeal to out of Towner’s in the city as well as draw locals from 20- 50 miles or greater, Massey said.

“I think the location was a safe location,” Massey said.

“I have told many restaurants and retailers that Wolfchase area is a guarantee success and potentially a home run location,” he said.  “There is no pioneering going on in the Wolfchase area and it is a consistent top performer for many restaurants and retailers.”

People who shop at malls are loyal to chain type stores and restaurants, Massey said, and  they understand what they are getting and seek out these chain restaurants and retailers.

“Personally, I would like to have seen it in East Memphis where I  trade on a more frequent basis, but I am not their core customer,” Massey said.   “I think the Wolfchase location will be very successful and continue the success or Northeast Shelby County.”

Memphis street newspaper “The Bridge” celebrates second anniversary

This weekend will mark the second anniversary of the launch of “The Bridge,” Memphis’ first street newspaper that addresses the hardships of the some 2,000 Memphians living on the streets.

The first edition launched on March 21, 2013. The team behind it approached members of the homeless population and paid them to share their stories and artwork for publication, in addition to training them as vendors to sell the paper while keeping the profits.

According to Caroline Ponseti, a Rhodes junior who helped found the paper, $32,000 has been put directly into the hands of the homeless as a result of “The Bridge.” And the paper’s top vendors make up to $540 per month.

“The Bridge” on March 25 will host a two-year anniversary celebration at St. Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, 700 Poplar Ave. that’s free and open to the public.

ZeroTo510 gets major honor

Some big news for ZeroTo510, Memphis’ medical device startup accelerator program –

According to ZeroTo510 co-founder Allan Daisley, today at SXSW and in Techcrunch, the program was announced as one of the top 20 accelerators in the U.S.

ZeroTo510 was ranked 15th in the nation by the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project.

From Allan: “We’d like to thank our team, our partners, our mentors, our board, and especially the entrepreneurs and graduates of ZeroTo510 for the hard work and collaboration that made this recognition possible.”

Dansette

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