Photo: Soulliere Financial, 11505 Tecumseh Road East, Windsor has joined forces with Continuum Financial Centres.
HEARD ON THE STREET – Soulliere Financial
After almost four decades serving the automotive needs of Windsorites, Rose City Ford has been sold, although the husband-wife team of John and Sophia Chisholm will remain in their current roles at the east-end dealership. The new owner is AutoCanada Inc., an Edmonton-based company that owns multiple automobile dealerships across Canada. Rose City was established in 1981 when John’s father Bill bought the former Dingwall Ford and changed its name to reflect Windsor’s flower city image. The Chisholm family still owns the building and the land located close to the intersection of Tecumseh Road East and Jefferson Avenue.
Busker’s Submarine, a long-time west-end staple serving ice cream, subs and gyros, may have changed hands, but the new owners are planning little in the way of changes. Brothers Mark and Matt Vukanovich and father Bill bought the business in October 2018 after spending the previous month training under previous Owner Mike Koutsonicolas. “Mike built a very successful business and there seems to be no reason to make any major changes,” says Mark, adding, “We might make a few additions to the menu, but that’s going to be a ways down the road.” Mark has a background in food services, Matt runs a business selling vintage t-shirts and Bill has worked in the automotive industry for many years. Koutsonicolas, who opened Busker’s on March 1, 1985 comments it was simply time to step away after so many years. “It’s a bit like the movie Groundhog Day in that the same customers kept coming back year after year and we have been blessed with so many loyal customers,” he states. Koutsonicolas, whose wife Jennifer also worked in the business, says the sale came about after a casual conversation with Bill Vukanovich who lives next door to Koutsonicolas’ sister. “I mentioned I was getting ready to retire and before we knew it, the business was sold,” remarks Koutsonicolas. Busker’s is a 2007 Biz X Award winner for “Super Duper Sub Shop” and is located at 1805 Tecumseh Road West.
Soulliere Financial, which celebrated its 40th anniversary in August 2018, joined forces with Continuum Financial Centres, a Canada-wide financial services provider at the end of 2018. Pat Soulliere, Elise Keller and their fast-growing team of advisors will continue to offer their services to clients seeking financial advice and guidance. Continuum is a division of Financial Horizons Group, which offers insurance, investments, group benefits and succession planning to clients in dozens of communities across Canada. The company’s headquarters are in Kitchener.
Tim Klue has decided to continue selling whimsical and colourful cupcakes from his brightly-decorated store in Walkerville, despite losing Sonia, his wife and business partner to cancer in early October of 2018. Tim and Sonia started Klueless Cupcakes in July 2013 after Sonia was laid off from her government job in Chatham. “We live in the neighbourhood and we were out for dinner one night and ran into the landlord for the building where we’re located,” explains Tim. The Klues had been baking cupcakes mostly as a hobby in their home, but quickly decided to take the plunge as business owners. “To build a successful business and then to have Sonia get sick has been absolutely tragic,” Tim expresses. For a few weeks after Sonia’s passing, Tim was unsure about the future of the business, but after turning 50 on Halloween, he decided to keep it open in his wife’s memory. Tim mentions that Sonia, who was 48, did all the baking and decorating and “I did the dishes.” Klue has hired a new baker, a graduate of Humber College, and plans to keep moving forward one day at a time. “It’s been a good run, but I’m not anywhere near the point when I can retire,” he adds. Klueless Cupcakes is located at 1598 Wyandotte Street East.
WindsorEats, an Internet-based booster of local restaurants and beverage producers, is the latest company to cash in on the legalization of cannabis. At the centre of the initiative is a hands-on, pipe-making experience led by Riccardo Santia, a world-renowned corn-cob pipe modifier. “He’s a Windsor guy, which makes it all the more special,” explains Adriano Ciotoli, Co-Owner of WindsorEats.com. “It will give people a hands-on look at the way these special pipes are made whether you happen to use them for cannabis or tobacco,” adds Ciotoli. Participants will work with power tools and a “secret sauce,” which will stain the pipe and make it look like a 100-year-old collectible. The first offering takes place January 12, 2019. The experience is currently scheduled to run monthly, making use of the workshop at Michael Difazio Reclaim Artistry. Looking ahead, WindsorEats also plans street food festivals May 17 and July 12 and a wine festival on June 28 and 29, all at Lanspeary Park, pending approval for special event permits. For more information on all of this year’s coming events, visit: WindsorEats.com.
Jon Liedtke, Owner of Higher Limits, is hoping that closing the doors of his three year old medical cannabis lounge on Ouellette Avenue in Windsor is not permanent. But, for now, it’s run afoul of an announcement by the Doug Ford Conservative government that vaping and smoking medical cannabis is equated with smoking tobacco products and would be covered by Ontario’s Smoke Free Ontario Act legislation. But, Liedtke says, “It’s been made aware to us by a senior member of the government that licensing medical cannabis and cigar lounges is coming.” He hopes it happens in the first or second quarter of this year, but acknowledges that government often moves very slowly. Liedtke adds that equating medical cannabis with tobacco is an infringement of the rights of people to smoke or vape cannabis for approved medical reasons. He indicates that in the meantime, he can’t keep his doors open without any revenue coming in. Higher Limits ceased operations at the end of 2018.