“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.” –Charles Darwin
In mid-March of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic struck the United States and the Central New York community in a way that would unapologetically and thoroughly alter the lives of all its people. Meals on Wheels of Syracuse (MOWS) had just successfully completed its 60th year providing meal service to its clients throughout the Syracuse area. Its Executive Director, Mason Kaufman, who has been at the helm of the agency for over 25 years (and has worked for the agency for over 35 years) knew that his life, the lives of his employees, and the lives of those that the agency serves were about to be adversely affected if he didn’t construct a plan and implement that plan immediately.
Employee to Owner During the COVID-19 Pandemic: The corona-virus pandemic has severely crippled the hospitality and food industries. While struggling to stay afloat financially, many small businesses have relied on their various loyal customer bases.
Offering take-out options has been an essential tool for these industries to maintain their cash-flows, until the public can gather once again and enjoy all the culinary options Syracuse has to offer. Hope seems nearly here as New York slowly re-opens in a strategically phased approach.
Mark Pawliw lived the food and restaurant lifestyle through his 25 plus years of experience in the industry, but he realized that something was missing - a connection to the producers, growers and chefs that brought the food to your plates, the drink to your glasses, and the art of cooking that ties it all together.
Although there are many casual take-out spots in Syracuse that offer Latin food, there is a noticeable lack of appreciation for dine-in dishes and the culture behind them. That's where Clara Cedeno comes in.
After many years working in the corporate world, Clara decided to pursue her dream of owning her own business. Bringing this dream together with her love of food and Latin culture helped her create her brain child, La Patria Café.
Everyone has a past—some are good, and some are not as good. But whatever you’ve gone through, translating your background and experience to shape and position your business can be transformative.
Eric Maliszewski was able to translate his skills and experience into ownership of the Canal Side Café & Bistro in the heart of the beautiful village of Baldwinsville. While Eric’s story may not be completely unique, it is a story about progression, perseverance, patience and opportunity.
THE WOMAN BEHIND THE CAKES - Stacey Lorraine is the owner, cake artist, office manager, and dishwasher (yup she does it all!) at The Cake Shop located in Skaneateles, NY!
Born and raised near Washington DC, Stacey got her start working at a local bakery when she was 16. From that point on she fell in love with everything baking, going on to become a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America. While she spent a short stint in restaurants Stacey found her true passion in custom cakes.
For as long as they can remember, Tucker and Colin Ray have wanted to start their own business.
The brothers grew up working for their Grandfather in his furniture and floor covering business located in Hamilton, NY. There they saw the great impact a small business can have on the community it belongs to, and how that community can rise up and support the small business in return.
The holidays are over, and as we reflect on the weight gain, credit card debt, and family get togethers, one thing may be sticking out in your head. At least everyone loved my recipe for “fill in the blank.”
Maybe you are thinking that you should take your recipe that your family and friends adored so much and do something with it, like turn it into a business or a side hustle right?
Well, let’s take a closer look at all that is involved to take your idea for a food business and make it a reality.
Martin Butts was burned out after seven years working long hours in the cramped and bustling aisles of the Syracuse Cooperative Market.
He was passionate about working with small scale and local food producers, but unsure about how to continue that work when he left. A chance encounter with a vendor from his time at the co-op in 2009 flipped a light switch and in a matter of days, Small Potatoes went live.
Eva Zaczynski had absolutely no experience running a restaurant when she first opened Eva’s European Sweets in in 1997.
She picked a red brick building on Milton Avenue, just west of Syracuse, because she could afford the rent. As word got out in those pre-internet days, the staff kept written directions by the phone to help lost diners when they called.
Read articles and advice written by our very own Onondaga SBDC Business Advisors!