Biz Beat 5-28-2015

We wrote about the opening of Big Slice Pizza in this column May 14, but now we see the business is closed and owner Glenn Eitelman has not returned an email or answered the store’s phone. The “hole-in-the-wall” pizza joint is on 13th next to Big City Gamin’ and across from the downtown fire station. A note on the door says, “The landlord has retaken possession of these premises, and claims a landlord’s lien on all the property of the tenant located herein.” Building owner John Hammer declined to comment when called. 

BRING Recycling will get a new executive director, Carolyn Stein, when Julie Daniel retires at the end of May. Stein started her career at BRING in 2008 as education coordinator, then moved to her most recent position as manager of the RE:think Business program, which she developed and launched in 2010. In that capacity, she has consulted with more than 200 local businesses, helping them reduce their carbon footprint and improve their triple bottom line. Daniel has been with BRING for nearly 20 years and was recently named Woman Business Leader of the Year by the Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce. Daniel’s list of accomplishments includes overseeing a $3.2-million capital campaign and construction project at its new headquarters and retail facility in Glenwood. Daniel will speak at the next meeting of GreenLane Sustainable Business Network at 11:30 am Wednesday, June 3, at the Eugene Hilton. The program is called “Getting Wasted With Julie: The Goddess of Garbage Talks Trash.”

J. Michaels Books at 160 E. Broadway is celebrating its 40th year in business at 5 pm Friday, May 29, with snacks, wine, conversation and special book sales. Owner Jeremy Nissel says “it’s been challenging” competing with superstores such as Barnes and Noble, Borders and Walden Books in the early 1990s and then the introduction of electronic books in 1998. An estimated 1,000 independent bookstores have closed in the U.S. in recent decades. “One hundred dollars spent in a locally owned store recirculates $68 into the local community,” Nissel says. “One hundred dollars spent in a chain store recirculates only $13.”

A free workshop on “Build a Better Nonprofit Board” with Tim Armstrong will be at 6 pm Thursday, May 28, at the Eugene Public Library downtown. Call 682-5450.

Local biodiesel producer SeQuential has announced it is preparing to increase production following the passing of the Oregon Clean Fuels program. The company has upgraded equipment and added operators to enable its plant to produce more biodiesel each month, says Rachel Shaver, SeQuential marketing manager. “With these changes, SeQuential expects it can grow production by as much as 20 percent in 2015,” she says. The company has also installed a blending rack to allow customers using biodiesel blends to mix their product onsite. These developments come on the heels of Gov. Kate Brown’s signing of SB 324, which fully implements the Oregon Clean Fuels Program.

Cycle Parts of Eugene is expanding its inventory to include the 100-percent electric Zero motorcycles, owner Rod Johnson says. The locally owned shop has been in business for 20 years selling and servicing Triumph, Hyosung, Kymco and now Zero motorcycles.

The annual Bingo for Babies event to benefit the nonprofit Willamette Family, Inc. will begin at 5:30 pm Saturday, May 30, at the Unitarian Universalist Church at 13th and Chambers. Proceeds will go to the Child Development Center. Call 684-4139 for more information.

St. Vincent de Paul thrift store is now occupying the old Gibson Motors site 33 Ivy St. in Junction City. The 20,000-sq.-ft. building with its showroom, shop, offices and parking lot takes up a full city block. A big grand opening was May 21. St. Vinnie’s is open daily from 10 am to 8 pm.

Dates have been set for the Northwest Permaculture Convergence that will happen in the River Road area Aug. 28-30. “This is the most expansive permaculture event of the year in the Northwest,” says Jan Spencer, one of the organizers. He expects about 400 people from around the country, and the conference will include tours of local sites demonstrating sustainable living, working and design. See