Market Place: Landrum High graduate takes over Persimmons

Published 4:23 pm Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Campobello native Jack Bunn has purchased Persimmons Bistro and Tea House in Landrum and will be re-opening for business in June.

After graduating from Landrum High School, Bunn began his career in food service at Cracker Barrel where he fell in love with the industry. &bsp;

He soon became a corporate trainer for Macaroni Grill and then moved to Atlanta in pursuit of an experiential culinary education. During his time with Bold American Catering Co. Bunn catered to celebrities like LL Cool J, Michael Jordan, the Warwick Dunn Foundation, the Atlanta Falcons, and Elton John.

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Bunn became a Saucier at South City Kitchen where he learned classic Southern and French cuisine under celebrity chef Jay Swift, and then took over as executive chef at Fuego where he learned the art of tapas, Latin flare, and vegan cuisine. &bsp;

Bunn moved back to Spartanburg to help his brother, Walter, open City Range before purchasing Persimmons Bistro and Tea House from Steve and Allyson Landon. Bunn said buying the restaurant dream come true because Persimmons was always his favorite place to dine when he was in town. The Bunn family invited friends and ministers from their church to bless the restaurant on May 19.

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Patt Kovach is the new owner of Merle Norman Cosmetics at 158 N. Trade Street in Tryon.&bsp; Kovach, who bought the business April 14, has recently returned from Merle Norman training in Los Angeles. She was previously employed at the Merle Norman Studio in Hendersonville and has worked at the study in Tryon since January. She is originally from Columbia, S.C. and moved to Saluda seven years ago after 20 years in Colorado. Rachel Box is the previous owner and continues to operate Salon Rachelle adjoining the Merle Norman studio.

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The Arts and Antiques of the Foothills Shop is now open between Isadora&squo;s Closet and Merle Norman at 152 S. Trade in Tryon.The shop features the art work of several artists who make their homes in the Tryon, Columbus, Landrum, and Saluda area.

Arts and Antiques of the Foothills (the sign will be up very soon) was the brainchild of Doug Arbogast who searched for contributing artists last fall at the Arts and Crafts Festival at Harmon Field. Since then at least eight of the artists have been showing their work as a co-operative at the shop.

Hours are Wednesday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Brenda Covil, hairstylist and owner, has two new hairstylists: Holly Revan and Meredith McCool. They both are accepting new clients. Services they offer are highlights, Goldwell Color, haircuts, manicures, spa pedicures, waxing and updos. Also available is massage therapy by Crista Klovach the owner of Carolina Women&squo;s Massage Center, located inside of the salon. The salon is located at 816 West Mills Street, Columbus and is open Tuesday to Saturday.

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Mountain BizWorks is now offering a branding service to its small business members.

Jay Fields, a local communications consultant who has spent his career expressing the &dquo;inherent drama&dquo; of scores of products and services for all sorts and sizes of companies, would like to make the identity and branding of a small business be just as evocative and creative as the identity and branding of some of the world&squo;s most progressive companies.

Folded in as a member service for Mountain BizWorks members (who can opt for a free two hour consultation) and available to anyone in our mountain community, Fields&squo; company, Nicheworks, builds its services around four immediate core needs: positioning, logo design, tagline, and starting single-page web site.

Fields has been creative director for three southeastern agencies and has been involved with branding Biltmore Estate, the City of Asheville, the University of Tennessee/Knoxville, Milliken and General Electric products, plus a raft of small businesses and non-profits. &bsp;

Mountain BizWorks is a not-for-profit organization building economic opportunities through business development and capital. For more information on Mountain BizWorks, visit or call 692-5826.

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Tickets for the Frugal Design Showcase Home at Creekside are now on sale. The model home, completely decorated with furnishings supplied by thrift stores in Henderson County, will be open June 19 and 20. For additional information, see

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The Asheville Regional Airport Authority Board last Monday appointed Lew Bleiweis, A.A.E., as airport director. Bleiweis has served as deputy airport director since April 2008, overseeing the administration, finance, public safety, IT, and operations departments.

Bleiweis has more than 20 years experience in aviation with strong credentials in administration, properties, operations, and maintenance. His career includes positions with the Louisville Regional Airport Authority, Kansas City International Airport and Roanoke Regional Airport Authority. He is an accredited airport executive by the American Association of Airport Executives and holds a bachelor&squo;s degree in business administration from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University with a concentration in airport management.

Bleiweis will assume his new role as airport director beginning June 27, 2009.

The current airport director at the Asheville airport, Dave Edwards, will be leaving June 26. Edwards will be joining Greenville-Spartanburg Airport (GSP) as the executive director. Edwards has served as airport director for AVL since November 2003.

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The Wine Cellar at the Saluda Inn features the art of Karen Dickson Johnson of Saluda and the hand-crafted jewelry of Julie Pace this month. The Saluda Wine Cellar, located at Greenville Street in Saluda, is open from 7 to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday, May 28-29.