Private Companies and Nonprofits

Quicktips: Manure expos, funky funerals and travel deals for single parents

Maybe this column should be called “quirky tips” instead of “quick tips,” because I can’t resist sharing some of the interesting and offbeat jottings from my notebook.  Hopefully you can embrace the oddities and spin an idea or two into

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Consumers itch and businesess profit as mosquitos swarm

As one of those lucky people generally ignored by stinging and biting insects, it was dismaying a week or two ago to be covered in itchy red welts after just a little while outdoors planting flower pots.  A few days

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Self-publishing industry empowers local authors, service providers

Several of the best new books I’ve read lately have had one thing in common: They’ve lacked any sort of publisher’s imprint on the inside cover or title pages. Self-publishing, in either hardcopy or e-book format, is a fast-growing sector, driven

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Spotlight auto repair as a career path and a local economic indicator

Today kicks off Automotive Service Professionals Week, an industry observance that runs June 9-15, according to the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). In light of last week’s monthly report on U.S. car sales – which in May reflected

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Campers seeking posh digs drive a boom in the business of ‘glamping’

You know that phenomenon when a certain word or phrase suddenly starts cropping up everywhere you turn?  Sometimes such a buzz can mean that a topic is ripe for a business or financial feature, and for me lately the term

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Around the U.S., June means LGBT pride and profit

One of June’s most widespread observances is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month, which as this Library of Congress history page notes, commemorates the Stonewall riots in Manhattan which were a milestone in the gay liberation movement in

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Help readers explore ideas for money-making summer service businesses

Headlines say “Teens still face a tough jobs market,” and other reports over the past couple of months have advised high school & college students – and anyone seeking seasonal employment this year – to apply early and often. I’ve

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New crime data prompts new look at multi-billion scrap metal business

We all have our quirks and one that I’ll admit to involves a rather odd fascination good trash-to-treasure stories. No, you won’t find me peering into neighbor’s bins under cover of darkness, but the industries surrounding solid waste, recycling and

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Online promos: What’s working, what’s not for your local merchants?

With Groupon Inc. set to release earnings May 6, it’s a good opportunity to take a look at the evolution of the daily deals / couponing craze several years after it peaked. (And Mother’s Day, coming up May 11, likely

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New state tax revenue data gives insight into consumer spending

New numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau on state tax revenues are just out for the fourth quarter of 2013, with the annual summary for the full year also due out April 8. Because these figures are broken down into

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