Author: haynescl

Braised in Balance announces relocation to Downtown Tiffin

Northwest Ohio meal prep business partners with Chandelier

Braised in Balance owners Brittany Trammell & Brad Price

TIFFIN, OHIO – April 15, 2022 – Braised in Balance, a fresh meal prep business started in 2019 in northwest Ohio, announced today that it was relocating its operation to Downtown Tiffin. The business will still be serving existing customers during the transition and will be open for new customers and pick-up beginning in mid-May at the Chandelier Community Event Center at 151 S. Washington Street.

Established in Fremont in 2019, Braised in Balance is a chef-curated meal prep business that outgrew its initial location and searched the region for a new location with a larger kitchen. They chose Tiffin because of the opportunity to partner with the Chandelier and use their kitchen as well as for the vitality, energy and momentum of Tiffin’s downtown.

Co-owner Brittany Trammell was excited to make the announcement. “We are looking forward to getting engaged in the downtown activities and working with the local businesses. Right now, we are in Tiffin on Mondays and Tuesdays preparing meals, and we have found the Tiffin community to be very welcoming. We are excited to get completely up and running here and serve this community.”

Trammell and co-owner Brad Price manage a staff of four and prepare 250 to 500 meals every week using fresh, local ingredients to help community members reach their health goals. They have found that the majority of their clients are busy individuals and small families that want healthy meal options.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz commented: “It is exciting to see new, heathy food options which broaden the options available to our community, and it’s exciting to continue to see new businesses open up in our downtown.”

Braised in Balance is a member of the Seneca Regional Chamber of Commerce.

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC (now TSEP) umbrella as the “Downtown Development Board,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

About the Seneca Regional Chamber of Commerce

For over a century, the Seneca Regional Chamber of Commerce has been the trusted source of knowledge and support for area businesses. As innovators who find new ways of getting things done, we are staying up to date on economic, community, and technological developments. The Chamber wants their members to thrive, raising the bar for growth and prosperity in Seneca County. Learn more at www.TiffinChamber.com.

Jolly’s, and Bair Bros., approved for grants

Projects total more than $12,500 investment

TIFFIN, OHIO – April 5, 2022 – Tuesday, the Architectural Board of Review (ABR) approved Façade Enhancement Grants for Jolly’s Drive-In at the Laird Arcade, and the Bair Brothers building

The ABR approved a grant of $4,058 for storefront windows at Bair Bros. Sporting Goods and Awards, 28 S. Washington St. Additionally, the ABR approved a $2,344 grant for Jolly’s Drive-In located in the Laird Arcade for new awnings.

Combined, these projects total nearly $12,500 in investment in Downtown Tiffin. In 2021, the ABR approved grants for the owners of 15 buildings in Downtown Tiffin for a total investment of nearly $270,000.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz commented: “We are pleased to be able to provide a program that assists with the restoration of our historic downtown buildings, which continues to improve the overall look and feel of our community.”

Since the Façade Enhancement Program’s inception in 2014, 106 projects have been approved for a total downtown investment of $2.9 million.

About the Façade Enhancement Program

The Façade Enhancement Program is a City of Tiffin reimbursement grant that was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year. For more information, visit www.tiffinseneca.org (search “Façade Enhancement”).

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

Steele Solutions Inc. and Tiffin Metal Products Merge to Create Supply Chain Solutions Leader

Combined company provides custom solutions in the design and manufacturing of complex steel infrastructure custom chute systems for distribution, fulfillment and sortation centers

From a press release from Tiffin Metal Products.

Franklin, WI and Tiffin, OH; February 18, 2022 – Steele Solutions Inc. (SSI), leader in the design and manufacturing of highly complex work platform solutions for distribution facilitates and Tiffin Metal Products (TMP), established leaders in custom chute systems for distribution and manufacturing facilities have combined to create a new company offering greater scale, innovation and benefits for our employees and customers.

Kevin O’Neill, CEO of Steele Solutions, Inc. commented, “Tiffin Metal Products is a perfect partner to our current portfolio of offerings as we both provide unique and complementary products that are the backbone of e-commerce fulfillment, distribution and parcel sortation facilities. The merger will result in a broader and more diverse product offering that will make for a more integrated solution and faster installation for our customers. Companies will continue to operate as-is, working in their existing facilities and staff; however, the combined customer base is expected to drive continued growth across both SSI and TMP facilities.”

Matt Dysard, President of Tiffin Metal Products, commented, “TMP experienced tremendous growth in 2021 and combining SSI and TMP is a great catalyst for continued growth and benefits for our employees and customers. It’s been a complete honor and privilege working with our dedicated employees. I look forward to staying on as the President of TMP and continuing this trajectory towards greatness together.  Merging with SSI is a perfect fit for our mission and will take our Tiffin, OH company to the next level.”

About Steele Solutions, Inc.

Steele Solutions, Inc. (“SSI”) is a North American leader in the design and manufacturing of highly complex work platform solutions enabling key value-added sortation and fulfillment functions. The Company partners with industry-leading integrators who lead warehouse automation projects for the largest e-commerce retailer in the US, as well as large parcel providers who continue to invest heavily in their distribution and fulfillment networks in order to keep up with the rise in e-commerce and package volumes.

About Tiffin Metal Products

Tiffin Metal Products (“TMP”) is an Ohio-based full service manufacturing company that produces custom chute systems and lockers for the public safety market. TMP has been located in Tiffin, OH since 1903 and has recently opened a location in Schmitten, Switzerland. Similar to SSI, TMP is a full-service supplier to its customer base, from engineering through paint and pack. There are currently 160 people in Tiffin and 18 in Switzerland. Tiffin has experienced significant sales growth since 2019 and continues to see opportunity for additional growth.

Local High School Students Swim with “Sharks”

From a press release from Seneca County CEO.

CEO Program Participants Present Business Concepts to Local Business Members in a Pitch Competition, like the show “Shark Tank”.

Students of Seneca County CEO wade into unchartered water as they plan to participate in a Pitch Competition, presenting their individual business concepts to a panel of local experts on March 28. As students continue to refine their business in anticipation of bringing it to market at the local trade show in May, the pitch competition acts as a sort of pressure test for the students’ elevator pitch of their business.

Like the TV show, Shark Tank, CEO (Creating Entrepreneurial Opportunities) participants present their business concepts to a panel of local business leaders who provide feedback on the vision, potential, and marketing of each business.

For the students, they are forced to develop a concise pitch for their business that includes both the big picture vision as well as the little picture details like revenue and cost projections that is delivered in a public forum. Though the Pitch Competition is often stressful for the students, it is cited as one of the best CEO experiences. Students are able to experience the value not only of the preparation required of public speaking, but also the doors that can be opened by connecting with community members who can see and share the vision of these young entrepreneurs and provide them with timely advice from their own business experiences.

One of the many ways the Seneca County CEO program equips students with authentic, real-life experiences, the Pitch Competition is a unique challenge for these high school students to apply the lessons and skills they are learning daily as they visit local businesses, interact with community leaders, and develop their own businesses.

Please join us on March 28 at Tiffin University as these six students pitch their business ideas to a local panel of local business owners. Event will begin promptly at 6pm in the TU Chisholm Auditorium.

Bascom Communications grows rural footprint with a multi-million-dollar investment in broadband expansion in Seneca County

From a press release from Bascom Communications (March 9, 2022).

Bascom, Ohio – Bascom Communications is proud to announce the expansion of high-speed fiber- optic broadband with the funding won in the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) Phase 1 auction to deploy gigabit-speed broadband service locally. The cooperative was awarded a total of $364,846.70 in the RDOF reverse auction that will cover 412 locations the FCC declared unserved or underserved. The expansion in rural Seneca County will focus on deployment in Big Springs, Clinton, Eden, Loudon, Pleasant, Scipio, and Seneca townships at this time, but will also open the door for even further expansion down the line.

“We understand that the need for reliable connectivity started way before the pandemic hit our local communities. While Bascom’s fiber optic services are available to an estimated 3,300 homes and businesses, we continue to aggressively expand, working to close the digital divide, and we realize this is an opportunity to double down and further invest on top of this award. By utilizing the efficiencies and cost advantages of doing this all at the same time, we plan to actually expand this to approximately 1,000 rural homes and businesses. We are also trying to procure additional state, federal, and local grants to stretch this even farther, to build out even more as the need is there.” says Nate Brickner General Manager/ CEO of Bascom Communications.

“It’s the cooperative way to continue to reinvest in the community that we work and live in. No one should be left behind when it comes to high-speed internet services in Seneca County. We have invested approximately $10.3 million in our fiber network since 2003. While we work to close the digital divide in the county, fiber services do not come with a flip of a switch, they take time. We realize there is a large gap to overcome and though we have been working on it for many years, it might be too much to conquer alone. We would love to partner with other entities, public or private, commercial or cooperative, to accomplish this for the betterment of the county.”

RDOF is a Federal Communications Commission program designed to close the digital divide in the United States and represents a $20 billion, 10-year opportunity for service providers to build and connect faster broadband speeds in rural and unserved areas across the United States. Bascom Communications is one of the 180 entities that won funding from the Federal Communications Commission. Out of the four companies with winnings in Seneca County, Bascom Communications had the largest win and is the only locally owned and operated telecommunications cooperative in the county.

With funding provided by RDOF, Bascom Communications was able to start construction in January 2022. Over the coming years, the cooperative will diligently work toward completing the RDOF project along with other budgeted expansion plans in Seneca County.

When the expansion project is complete, the new cooperative members will have the option to select from all of Bascom Communications’ local fiber services that include fiber television, phone, home security, and gigabit-speed internet. Additionally, Bascom Communications members will be able to bundle their Internet with fiber TV and phone services for cost savings.

To view Bascom’s current and the planned expansion map and for more information on local fiber services, visit https://bascomtelephone.com/fiber.

Since 1906 Bascom Communications located in Bascom, Ohio has served rural communities in and around Seneca County, Ohio providing high-quality, dependable service and support. As a telecommunications cooperative, Bascom Communications is a member-owned utility established to provide quality telecommunications service at a reasonable cost to cooperative members.

Seneca County ranks 10th nationally for economic development

Community ranked in top 2% for large projects

TIFFIN, OHIO – MARCH 1, 2022 – Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership (TSEP) and the Fostoria Economic Development Corp. (FEDC) announced today that Seneca County has placed No. 10 nationally in Site Selection magazine’s rankings for large, private economic development projects. This places it in the top two percent of the 581 micropolitans in the U.S. Site Selection has been annually ranking states and cities since 1978 and top micropolitians since 2004.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz was excited to hear the news: “Our economy continues to grow year after year, and we are proud to again be recognized by Site Selection Magazine.”

This is the 11th year in a row that the Tiffin-Seneca micropolitan area has been ranked in the top 100 nationally, and the seventh time it has placed in the top 10. In 2021, Seneca County was ranked No. 4. Qualifying projects must involve a capital investment of at least $1 million, create at least 20 new jobs or add at least 20,000 sq. ft. of new floor area. In this year’s award, Site Selection’s proprietary database tracked 7 projects meeting the criteria for Seneca County in 2021.

Fostoria Mayor Eric Keckler agreed, saying, “I’m pleased that Fostoria again placed among the top communities in the nation for growth.”

Seneca County Commission President Tony Paradiso added, “I’m proud that Seneca County has achieved yet another Top 10 national ranking and congratulate everyone who contributed toward this great success.”

This year, Ohio placed second nationally for its capital investment activity in 2020, and the entire Northwest Ohio region posted strong numbers, with Findlay taking the number one micropolitan slot, Tiffin and Fremont tying for tenth, Van Wert placing 27th and Defiance 39th. Lima tied for 3rd place for metropolitans with less than 200,000 population and Toledo was ranked 7th for mid-sized metropolitans.

“Northwest Ohio continues to shine not only in the state but nationally, and the economic development of communities like Tiffin, Fostoria, and Seneca County are a key reason why. We truly appreciate our strong partnership with TSEP and FEDC and look forward to strong continued growth,” said Dean Monske, president and CEO of the Regional Growth Partnership.

Sandusky County Economic Development Corporation and TSEP hosted a joint press conference today at Terra State Community College. Mike Jay, Director of Strategic Networks from Regional Growth Partnership, the regional economic development organization for Northwest Ohio, made the announcement. Making remarks at the event were State Sen. Bill Reineke, State Rep. Gary Click, Sandusky County Commissioner Chris Shay, Seneca County Commissioner Tony Paradiso, Clyde Vice Mayor Chris Shay, and Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz.

More information can be found at siteselection.com.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at tiffinseneca.org.

About the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation

Established in 1956 as the Fostoria Community Industrial Association, the Fostoria Economic Development Corporation (FEDC) is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Fostoria and surrounding area in Hancock, Wood, and Seneca Counties, which consistently rank among the top counties nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Fostoria at fostoriaedc.org.

Cigar store coming to Downtown Tiffin

The Social Cigar will feature premium cigars, cigar accessories and men’s gifts.

TIFFIN, OHIO – February 23, 2022 – Tiffin resident and entrepreneur Todd Steen announced today that he is opening a new premium cigar store in Tiffin, Ohio. To be named The Social Cigar, the retail shop is planning a springtime opening for its newly renovated location in Downtown Tiffin at 92 S. Washington St.

The Social Cigar will carry more than 400 varieties of cigars from countries including the Dominican Republic, Honduras and Nicaragua, and will be working through distributors and directly with manufacturers. Additionally, the store will carry cigar accessories and cigar themed wall art as well as men’s gifts.

Owner Todd Steen has a 35-year career in retail and is excited to be opening the store in his hometown. Steen has made an $80,000 investment into the business, and the building recently went through an extensive renovation. Tables and chairs may be set up outside for people to enjoy their cigars, keeping the shop smoke-free and inviting for those wanting to stop in and pick up a gift.

“I’ve been a cigar enthusiast for 30 years, and I’m excited to offer high quality, premium cigars and men’s accessories here in Downtown Tiffin,” Steen said.

“Congratulations to Todd on the opening of this new store in Downtown Tiffin,” said Tiffin Mayor Aaron
Montz. “We’re excited about offering another unique experience and destination retail option in our historic district. This will be a great compliment to the upscale dining and entertainment options already existing in our community.”

Tiffin has a history of cigars. The W.H. Kildow Cigar Company was established in Tiffin in the 1890s, and the building, now the Antique Warehouse on Perry St., still stands today. The company operated through much of the 20th Century as a cigar manufacturer and distributed to retailers throughout the state.

For more information, visit http://www.thesocialcigar.net.

About Downtown Tiffin
The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

Terra State’s Kern Center announces career fair and upcoming events

We received this from Holly Hoffman, Coordinator of Workforce & Community Education at Terra State today and wanted to pass it along.

Business Referrals Webinar – Feb. 15

There’s still time to register for the Free Webinar on February 15, 2022, – “Generating Predictable Referrals for your Business” presented by BNI Northwest Ohio. The FREE interactive virtual workshop will show you how to generate consistent high quality business referrals every month! Register by contacting the Kern Center at kern@terra.edu or (419) 559-2464.

Spring Career Fair – May 29

  • The Spring Career Fair will be held on Tuesday, May 29, 2022, from 11 AM – 1 PM. Registration is still open! Register here: Terra.edu/CareerFairs
  • Lorie Simpson has put together a great leadership series for March that you will want to check out. Terra State Community College is offering discounts if you register for more than one session – two or more get 10%, if you register for all 5, get 20% off your registration cost.
  1. Make Training Pay-Off (March 3, 2022, from 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM)
  2. Peer Today, Boss Tomorrow (March 3, 2022, from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  3. Onboarding Practices (March 10. 2022, from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM)
  4. Performance Management (March 10, 2022, from 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  5. On the Job Training for the Production Trainer (March 17, 2022, from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM)

Don’t miss the other classes coming up in February & March! For more information on any of these, please visit https://learn.terra.edu:

Other Upcoming Events & Training

  • 2/7 – Servsafe Manager
  • 2/15 – NFPA Electrical Safety in the Workplace
  • 2/16 – Excel Level I
  • 2/17 – BLS/CPR
  • 2-24 – Creating a Better Employee Experience
  • 3/2 (6 weeks) – Beginning Spanish (evenings)
  • 3/24 (6 weeks) – Beginning Spanish (days)
  • 3/10 – Person In Charge Food Safety
  • 3/14 – NFPA Electrical Safety in the Workplace
  • 3/15 – Servsafe Manager
  • 3/16 – Branding Your Business
  • 3/17 – CPR
  • 3/24 – Building Inclusive Communities

For additional information, please feel free to contact Holly Hoffman directly at 419.618.3291 (cell) or by email at hhoffman01@terra.edu.

First Downtown Tiffin Façade Grants of 2022

Two downtown properties get support to replace important exterior elements

244 S. Washington St. in Downtown Tiffin

TIFFIN, OHIO – February 1, 2022 – During a meeting Tuesday, February 1, 2022, the Architectural Board of Review approved the first two downtown Façade Enhancement Grants of the year. The successful and award-winning program begins its ninth year.

The board approved a $10,000 grant for the replacement of the roof, gutters and downspouts at 244 S. Washington Street, located on the corner of Charlotte and S. Washington Street.

Property owner and downtown business owner Robb Mack said, “This project will allow us to restore the building, so it can be a viable property in downtown Tiffin.”

The board approved a second grant for $4,267.50 for porch repair, window replacement, and new siding for a three-unit apartment building at 195-197 S Washington Street. The property is owned by Tim Lemmon with Seneca Home Improvements.

“We are happy to see the momentum continue. This program has been vital to the restoration of Tiffin’s historic downtown properties and the overall revitalization of downtown,” said Mayor Aaron Montz.

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About the Façade Enhancement Program

The Façade Enhancement Program is a City of Tiffin reimbursement grant that was started in 2014 and provides a 50 percent match of funds for eligible exterior improvements on residential and commercial structures within the downtown historic district, up to $10,000. Each building is eligible to receive up to $10,000 per calendar year. For more information, visit www.tiffinseneca.org (search “Façade Enhancement”).

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

Downtown Tiffin business gets makeover

Uncle Mike’s becomes Big Mike’s, partners with MST

TIFFIN, OHIO – Monday, Jan. 31, 2022 –  The new owners of Uncle Mike’s Dairy Bar, Danny & Katie Perry, who purchased the business and building in 2021, announced that the food establishment will be changing its name to Big Mike’s, in honor of Danny’s father, get a new exterior, offer new menu items, and become the new launching point of the Tiffin Pedal Company.

Perry purchased the building at 274 S. Washington on June 15, 2021, for $165,000. He intends to make further investments in 2022, including façade renovations and is proposing to insulate and resurface the exterior of the building. Additionally, Big Mike’s is to add burgers and chicken chunks to the menu, featuring sauces under the MST Sauce Co. name, and will be limiting the ice cream offerings to focus on the favorites. Perry also owns the Tiffin Pedal Company, a popular local 14-seat party bike business that both rents the bike and provides tours. Perry said, “We are excited about this new endeavor, and we want to enhance the Uncle Mike’s tradition of offering great food and a great experience in downtown Tiffin.”

Chris Chase, Owner of MST Sauce and MST Pub, applauded the announcement, saying, “We are happy to partner with Danny and his exciting new venture. It’s a great example of local business owners working together in Downtown Tiffin.” Chase started selling his Creamy Garlic Parm, Hot Garlic Parm, and Griffs sauces and signature Dry Rub in 2021 online and at area retailers like Simply Susan’s, Molyets, and Heritage IGA.

Tiffin Mayor Aaron Montz agreed: “We truly are a life connected here in Tiffin, and the collaboration of our business owners is second to none. It’s a key reason for our success and the revitalization taking place downtown.”

About Downtown Tiffin

The revitalization of downtown Tiffin began in 2011, when a group of community members came together to for “Tiffin Tomorrow”, with the goal of promoting and encouraging economic development in downtown Tiffin, and creating plans, programs and actions to ensure long-term vitality and prosperity. In 2014, the city of Tiffin contracted with SIEDC to act as the downtown organization and “Tiffin Tomorrow” came under the SIEDC umbrella as the “Downtown Development Committee,” which serves as the governing board of the downtown organization. In 2015, Tiffin joined Heritage Ohio’s Ohio Main Street Program. For more information, click here.

About the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership

Started in 1983 as the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp. (SIEDC), the Tiffin-Seneca Economic Partnership is a private, non-profit corporation dedicated to driving positive economic, downtown, and community development in Tiffin and Seneca County, Ohio, which consistently ranks among the top communities nationally for economic development. Learn more about the great things going on in Tiffin and Seneca County at www.tiffinseneca.org.