Leeds Grenville
Economic Development eNews | September 13, 2016
Business Profile
Top feature photo: Sugar Belle owner and pastry chef Kim Sheppard, at right, and chef Anthony Kellar are a team behind the counter at 109 Brock Street West in the village.

Above photo: A pan of cinnamon buns speak for themselves. Below: Kim with her daughter Liana.

Customer Jeannie Bujold, left, shares a laugh with a friend at Sugar Belle Bake Shoppe.
Sugar Belle Bake Shoppe a sweet success and warm tribute to the pastry chef's mom 
MERRICKVILLE - Kim Sheppard and her mom Diane dreamed of opening a bakery together. Today, the Sugar Belle Bake Shoppe is a special, gorgeous-smelling confectionery Kim has created to make her late mother proud. 

"We were both very strong, independent women so we wanted to be our own bosses," Kim says of their close relationship and shared love of being in the kitchen. A sitting area in Sugar Belle is dedicated to Diane, who passed away after a courageous battle with cancer in 2014. Many will remember her from her work at Brewed Awakenings in Merrickville.

"I think she'd be pretty proud of Sugar Belle," Kim says of the eatery specializing in pastries and cakes, sausage rolls and savoury quiches. Everything at Sugar Belle, from the popular cinnamon buns to date squares made from her grandmother's recipe, is homemade. Sweet treats are paired with Chef Anthony Kellar's quiche, chili and soups. Coming this fall are specialty grilled cheese sandwiches. Kim and Anthony like to add new items to the menu but they are also strict about quality control with their tried and true best sellers.

"What we do, we do well," says Kim. An Ottawa Citizen Daytrip review agrees, calling Sugar Belle's menu "modest but accomplished" while a TripAdvisor reviewer calls it "Cream Puff Heaven." These descriptions make Kim smile. Special occasion and wedding cakes are part of the growing business and Kim is known for her buttercream icing.
Another focus is to use quality, Eastern Ontario and locally sourced goods. Her "Freakin' Good" Equator coffee from nearby Almonte is a top seller. Iced coffee has been a big hit and Merrickville's own "Tea by G" is the premium tea served. 

"It's very much a family business with an atmosphere where people can relax," says Kim, who has help from her daughter, Liana. Customer Jeannie Bujold agrees, saying it's "homey, comfortable, unique and cheery." Depending on the season, you can sit and relax over a butter tart inside or outside.

TripAdvisor and Yelp have given it four and five star reviews. Sugar Belle is open Tuesday to Sunday 9:30 a.m. to 5ish (Kim's description) and closed Mondays. Learn more about Sugar Belle on their Facebook page. You can email them or call 613-220-5973.
Business Profile
Jobmatics takes career guidance to the next level
SEELEY'S BAY - Empowering people to find the best and most enjoyable career path is not always an easy task.

Enter Career Focusing™, a program for anyone who wishes to take charge of their own career decision-making process. Even better, teachers can now be trained online and implement it in their career classroom or guidance office. It's a step-by-step, how-to program for making positive and realistic choices.

"Who would have thought a little company in Seeley's Bay could create something that is internationally needed?" asks Jobmatics president and Career Focusing author Kathy Harris. "It's available, more affordable and now easily accessible to teachers across the English-speaking world."

Kathy, a Seeley's Bay resident, is part of a Jobmatics team with partners Penny Hopkins and Ethel Kozliner. The teacher-training product went online earlier this year. It will soon be followed by an online do-it-yourself, decision-making program for those who don't benefit from an in-school product. 

When working as a Queen's University career information specialist, Kathy realized there was a major gap in career counselling. "We were doing an excellent job of giving people the information but we were neglecting to teach them what to do with it," says Kathy. "People don't know how to decide on a career. Career Focusing is all about taking the guesswork out of the equation by making sure people know how to get into learning and work that is a good fit for them."

Only about 30% of people are sure of their career path. More than 60%, however, don't know or they start studies/training only to drop out. A lot of time and money is wasted in the process, says Kathy.

Learn more about Jobmatics on the website, listen to an audio testimonial from two Waterloo-area teachers, send Kathy an email or call 613-387-3301.

Kathy Harris is president of Jobmatics. The company motto is "Equipping people to make the right moves." It took her more than 8 years to write "Career Focusing," which was then developed into a scoped, sequenced program for high school students. It is currently taught in Ontario, New Brunswick, Manitoba, Alberta and every school in the Northwest Territories.


Nominate an individual who has made a difference and improved your municipality.

Nominate a community leader you know 
for the Economic Development Award
The deadline for nominations for the Bill Thake Memorial Economic Development Leadership Award is fast approaching on Friday, September 30th.  

The award is presented each year to an individual volunteer who has shown outstanding commitment to economic development resulting in the growth and vitality of the Leeds Grenville region. The individual may be involved with local Economic Development Committees, Chambers of Commerce, industry associations or other economic development activities.

Get a Nomination form

For more information contact Deanna Clark at 613-342-3840, ext. 5360.

SAVE THE DATE: The winner will be announced at the annual Leeds Grenville Economic Development Summit on Friday, November 18th at the North Grenville Municipal Centre. Registration will be available in October. 
Funding Opportunities
Celebrate Ontario 2017 applications open
Celebrate Ontario is an annual program that helps festivals and events enhance their programs, activities and services. The support helps grow tourism by making it easier for event organizers to offer new and improved experiences that will attract more tourists and increase visitor spending.

The deadline to apply is November 8th, 5 p.m.

NEW this year!
  • Submit initiatives celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary for events occurring between April 1st to December 31st, 2017.
  • Marketing is an eligible expense this year and applicants may apply for marketing costs associated with their enhancement project, the event itself, or both.
  • Existing large events with cash operating expenses in excess of $1-million may apply for multi-year (two-year) funding under the new Celebrate Ontario 2017 Multi-Year category
  • Applicants are asked to identify the target sector of their event. New is the opportunity to identify rural or northern events, given their significance to local economies.
A series of five online Celebrate Ontario information sessions will be delivered via webinar using WebEx and teleconference to assist organizations in applying. Register in English or in French. Blair Harris is this region's tourism advisor. Email Blair or call him at 613-531-5581 if you have any questions.