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T.C. Demaresq browses for business news.

Dynamite Media Group is now open and offering a range of services including sound production and recording, graphic design, 3D animation and photography. “If somebody wants to, let’s say, have a CD recorded, he can have the cover designed and a studio photo shoot,” says Dynamite co-founder and employee Sal El-Mekki. “Instead of going to different companies to get your photos done or your design done it can all be done within one place.” Dynamite offers free consultations, and can be contacted through their website at

Fly away home

Aviator Virtual Offices opened in mid-January to serve the needs of SOHOs (small office/home office) in the HRM. “We are a home office providing services to home offices,” says president Robert Cunningham. “We can look after anybody from a salesman or contractor to a massage therapist—anybody who works at home and would love to have someone answer their phone, take their messages, help with sending out brochures, answer customer inquiries, but just doesn’t have the space and/or financial resources to hire them in-house.” Aviator offers virtual secretary services, courier management, and also rents meeting and boardroom space with the option of a catering service. “It’s all in the interests of customer service,” says Cunningham. “Less and less people want to get answering machines, and more and more people want to talk to a live person and really find out what’s going on.”

Lift off

Need-A-Lift wheelchair transport service celebrates its first year in business this week. “It’s been well received,” says owner/manager/driver Kevin Bulley. “I guess it was just a much-needed system. It’s a good complement to the services that are out there now.” Bulley services 11 of HRM’s major seniors’ residences, as well as numerous private customers. More than 70 per cent of Need-A-Lift trips are made to and from medical appointments, but Bulley also drove his Dodge Sprinter (a 10-seat vehicle converted to hold up to four wheelchairs or scooters, or a combination of wheelchairs and seated passengers) to Peggy’s Cove 20 times last summer at the request of numerous wheelchair-bound cruise ship passengers. “I haven’t done any advertisement, it’s all been word of mouth, and I think in this particular business that’s probably the best way to attract new clients,” says Bulley. “I’ve managed to see that most of the clients I get, I keep. It’s kind of like a snowball effect.”

Uncommon sound

Common Ground Studios, formerly known as Solar Audio, has acquired some new gear and is looking to expand its already diverse market. The facility, located at 6065 Cunard and best known for its recording studio (the birthplace of some of Atlantic Canada’s most celebrated releases, including albums from The Rankins, Rita MacNeil, Ashley MacIsaac, Natalie MacMaster and The Irish Descendents), is now home to two Avid editing suites, a G5 Final Cut 7 suite, camera, lighting and sound services for television, and a full creative team to assist with everything from the production of music demos to professional animation and films. “We’ve been able to float a facility of this size by diversifying and expanding our business to include post-audio for television and film, as well as record label and publishing services,” says Andrew Watt, who co-owns the studio with Chris Mitchell. “We’re breaking into the indie market, and will hopefully raise the production bar for some of our local artists.”

Healthy closure

EastWind Health Associates at 2176 Windsor is scheduled to close on February 15 after 17 years in business. Owned by Peter Goodman and Kermit Stick, the multidisciplinary treatment center is well-known for its successful combination of both Eastern and Western medicine. It will be missed.

Thai corner

The Noodle Nook is scheduled to open next to Sicilian Pizza on Blowers in early April, and will re-invent the booze-soaked world of late-night dining. The restaurant will specialize in Thai and Szechwan-style Bento boxes packed with authentically prepared noodle stir-fries, satays and curries. “It’s a healthy option for the late-night crowd,” says owner Ronnie Lovett, “and it’s something different that’s not offered right now. You can’t even get late-night Chinese food—there are no options but pizza or donairs—so I think it’s going to go really well.” The Noodle Nook will also cater to the downtown lunch crowd, and will have both eat-in and take-out options.

Knot home

Tangled Skeins, a knitting shop in Dartmouth, moved two weeks ago to a new location at 158C Portland. The location was formerly home to Ducky’s Café, and is significantly larger than Tangled Skeins’ old home next door. “A bigger space is just better,” says owner Sheryl Goodwin. “You can have more customers in here, there’s more room to move around, and we can hold classes.” Goodwin says Tangled Skeins will offer a variety of knitting classes in the near future.

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