Home-Care Provider Gets Rebranded, Joins Florence Chamber

by Ardie Arvidson

All Ways Caring HomeCare is rebranding and to let people know more about its transition it joined the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce. A ribbon cutting was held on Thursday morning at 960 Pamplico Highway.

Formerly ResCare HomeCare, All Ways Caring HomeCare is part of the BrightSpring Health Services.

Molly Hawkins, branch manager, said All Ways serves 11 counties in the Pee Dee area with nine branches in South Carolina. It provides home care in 24 states.

Hawkins said the health care provider offers private-duty, veterans, and community long-term care, as well as disability and special needs care, workman’s comp and family-support voucher care.

She said All Ways joined the chamber to work in the community and let people know it is in the community.

“The name change reflects the transformation of the home care organization which has been providing services for more than 20 years as ResCare HomeCare,” according to an announcement from BrightSpring. “All Ways Caring HomeCare will offer care for more than 20,000 individuals across the country, delivering quality, compassionate and highly individualized care and support that helps seniors stay at home – all while maximizing their dignity, privacy and independence.”

“We are so excited to introduce All Ways Caring HomeCare,” said Rexanne Domico, president of home health and neurotherapy. “As home health care needs evolve, we’re creating the best operating model in the industry to enhance the quality of care we provide.”

All Ways Caring has the capability to offer short-term care, seasonal help and long-term care, Domico said.

“We care about our patients,” Hawkins said. “They are like extended family.”

For more information, contact Molly Hawkins at 843-629-0794.

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AirMedCare Network Joins Florence Chamber

by Ardie Arvidson

An air ambulance crew from AirMedCare Network landed its helicopter Tuesday afternoon at the Florence Airport at the FBO station, 500 S. McCall Blvd. for a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate AirMedCare Network joining of the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

Chamber ambassadors showed their support by participating in the event.

Pastor Eugene Park Sr. of Mullins and the Rev. Steven Curry Gallego of Cross and Crown Lutheran Church in Florence spoke and prayed.

Chris Frye is the base manager of the air ambulance medical transport located in Sumter. He said they have been in this area for 3½ years. The medical transport has been in operation for 36 years, he said. The transport has seven helicopters and one airplane in South Carolina. They are spread throughout the state in Greenville, Spartanburg, Anderson, Sumter, Mullins, Charleston and Walterboro.

In Sumter there are four pilots, one full-time mechanic, three nurses and three paramedics, he said.

Frye said they are in the business of transporting people to trauma surgery units to help save lives.

They arrived in Florence in a Bell 407.

Lionel Grant, the membership sales manager for AirMedCare Network, cut the ribbon. He said they have a membership plan where a household can join as one to take care of out-of-pocket expenses when being flown by an AMCN provider. You don’t have to be a member of their plan to be transported by the service. A yearly or monthly fee is charged. With a membership, members of a household receive ID cards and stickers for their drivers’ licenses.

“Their first job is to save lives,” Grant said.

AirMedCare Network is one of the largest air medical membership networks in America. It provides coverage across 320 locations in 38 states, including Alaska and Hawaii.

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Barber Shop Celebrates Joining Florence Chamber

by Ardie Arvidson

Barbers and Blades Barber Shop, LLC was joined by Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce ambassadors for a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday morning, denoting its membership into the chamber.

The barbershop opened in April 2018 at 352 W. Palmetto St.

Owner Shkari Deon Ham said his step-father is a member of a chamber of commerce and encouraged him to join, and his cousin, a barber in Hartsville, is also a chamber member.

“I thought it was a good idea,” he said.

Ham said he learned to cut hair at the feet of his grandmother and practiced on his grandfather, starting around the age of 13.

Ham said owning his own shop was a dream of his.

He served in the military before deciding to pursue his dream by attending Thompson & Son Barber College in Florence.

Ham previously worked at Thompson Master Hair Care.

He said he is located on a very business street, where they accept walk-in traffic.

Business has been good, he said.

There are two barbers at the shop other than Ham. Joining in the celebration on Monday were Dion Grant and Robert Tozzi.

Ham said each has his own specialties.

Stylists Jamela Broaddus-Franklin and Vicki Moore were also on hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony.

“I was born here in Florence but raised in Fayetteville, North Carolina,” Ham said.

Cuts vary in price depending on styles and services. Hours are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Visit the shop’s Facebook page for individual phone numbers and to make appointments.

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Ribbon Cut at New Convenient Store in Florence County

From Staff Reports

With much celebration, a host of supporters and a live radio remote broadcast, On The Go cut the ribbon and joined the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce Thursday morning.

Owned and operated by Johnny and George Rishmawi, the shiny new convenience store is on Alligator Road near the intersection with Knollwood Road.

“We like the location and we thought it was a nice place to put a nice store for the community,” Johnny Rishmawi said.

In addition to gas, a spacious parking lot and other features usually found at convenience stores, there is more.

“Our kitchen is breakfast, lunch and dinner every single day from 5:30 a.m. – 8 p.m.,” Richmawi said. “We cook home cooking country food — fried chicken and pork chops and barbecue ribs and meatloaf. We cook different food every day.”

The store is open 24/7.

To read the full story on SC Now, click here.

Well Center Pharmacy Joins Florence Chamber, Cuts Ribbon

by Matthew Christian

Shortly after 11:30 a.m. Thursday morning Well Center Pharmacy owner Marlon Orias cut the ceremonial ribbon to join the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce.

Orias, a native of the Philippines, opened the pharmacy on June 5 with his wife, Marelle, after both lost their jobs when two local Rite Aids closed following Rite Aid’s purchase by Walgreens.

He said they made the decision to join the chamber to give something back to the community.

“If we go back to basics,” Orias said Thursday after he cut the ribbon, “I moved here from a third-world country. I migrated and this city’s been good to me.”

Florence, he said, was welcoming when he moved here. He said he found South Carolina’s residents to be very warm and welcoming.

He added that he had spent 10 years in Florence as a pharmacist at the Rite Aid in Five Points. Marelle spent 11 years as a pharmacist at the Darlington Rite Aid. Orias said he had raised his family in Florence and had become established in the community.

“That’s why I decided to support the chamber of commerce being a part of the community of Florence,” Orias said. “It was a way to give back.”

What sets Well Center, and all independent pharmacies, apart from the nationally known chains, Orias said, is the level of customer service.

“For us being independent, we are capable of being more personal with the customers,” Orias said.

He said the pharmacy would be more caring when it comes to filling prescriptions and the service would be more courteous.

Well Center will also offer training.

Customers will have the opportunity to participate in the Medication Therapy Management and Lifestyle Coaching Program, a health-management program sponsored by the South Carolina Pharmacy Association and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Marelle is also certified in opioid teaching.

The pharmacy also offers immunizations and will offer delivery options for the elderly.

The pharmacy is open 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., Monday-Friday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. It is at 605 S. Irby St. (across from the Drs. Bruce & Lee Foundation Library). For more information, visit wellcenterpharmacy.com or call 843-799-5054.

The Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce has around 600 business members. Its mission is to “Promote and enhance a favorable business climate and improve the quality of life to make Florence the best community in which to live and operate a business.”

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Seminole 6 Sports Holds Ribbon Cutting in Florence

by Ardie Arvidson

Seminole 6 Sports held a ribbon cutting on Wednesday afternoon to celebrate its membership in the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce Chamber. Chamber ambassadors were there to help celebrate.

Michael “Mike” Goodman, coach, cut the ribbon while team members, cheerleaders and other coaches watched.

Seminole 6 Sports is a member of the AAU football program and the first in Florence County, Goodman said.

They have about 100 children participating this first year of the program. There are 8U, 10U, 12U and 14U age brackets, he said.

“We haven’t had any games yet,” Goodman said.

The travelling football team’s first game will be on Sept. 7 in West Columbia.

Goodman said he wanted to give the kids a choice. He said there are traveling baseball and basketball teams in the area, but there were no traveling football teams.

“I wanted the kids to see this as an option,” he said.

He said he wanted to thank Beedy Waddell, state coordinator of the AAU program, for making this possible.

He said the middle-school-age children have a choice to play on the traveling team and or their school’s junior varsity team.

“They can do both,” he said. “There is still time to join.”

The players are in training Tuesday and Thursday nights from 6:30 to 8:15 at West Florence High School.

Head coaches include Jackie Foxe, Doug Gamble, Steven Thayer, Candace Hampton and Kelvin Burnette.

“I want to thank Ben Oates, principal of Sneed Middle School, because his was the only school that allowed us to use their field for our kids to practice and for our games,” Goodman said.

He said Walt Parker, whose son is on the team, has been indispensable thus far with helping the team get started. He said he also has to thank his wife, Samantha Goodman, who has been a tremendous help.

For more information about the football program, visit seminolesports.com or visit its Facebook page.

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Specialty Finance Company Joins Florence Chamber, Cuts Ribbon

by Ardie Arvidson

AG Resource Management (ARM) held a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Monday morning to celebrate its membership in the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce Chamber. Chamber ambassadors were there to help celebrate.

AG Resource Management is located at 205 N. Irby St. Suite C, in Florence

Dr. Cy F. Boyer is the market leader at ARM, a specialty finance company focusing on “bringing financial and risk management solutions to agribusiness.”

The company opened in October 2018 in Florence.

Boyer said their lending is based on the crop, crop insurance and government payments.

He said the company’s background is primarily in agriculture.

“We help farmers stay in business,” Boyer said.

He said they also write crop insurance.

The company was founded 11 years ago by Brad Terrell and has 36 branches, with 10-12 slated to open this year and another 10-12 next year.

Boyer said the company now has $1 billion in assets and 7.5 million loans.

“People are beginning to ask who we are,” Boyer said. “It is a great company with a great culture.”

Boyer is a staff of one at the moment but says plans are to hire five to seven staffers.

He said business has been mostly by referrals and word of mouth from farmers.

Boyer said he has 27 years of experience in all areas of banking. He obtained his Ph.D. in applied science from Regis University in Denver, and he attended the University of South Carolina in the 1970s. He is from Georgia.

Office hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

For more information, call 843-676-5623.

To read the full article on SC Now, click here.

Revival Burger Cuts Ribbon as New Chamber Member

by Ardie Arvidson

Revival Burger, at 846 S. Irby St. in Florence, joined the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce and celebrated with chamber ambassadors on Wednesday with a ribbon cutting.

Although the restaurant has been open since November 2018, Kyle Hardee, one of three owners in the Downcountry Dining Group, said this was the first opportunity they have had to orchestrate a ribbon cutting for the restaurant.

In the partnership with Hardee are Travis Miller and Steve Toniolo. The trio also owns Tubb’s Shrimp & Fish Co on Second Loop Road., King Jefe Taco Bar on South Irby Street and Sweet Café & Bakery inside McLeod Regional Medical Center.

A fifth collaboration is in the works in partnership with Stefano’s called Pizza Mio, Hardee said. The pizza restaurant is scheduled to open the first of September in the shopping center near the Walmart Supercenter on Beltline Drive in Florence.

Hardee said they have been members of the chamber with their other restaurants, but when the chamber reached out to host a ribbon-cutting ceremony for Revival Burger, he said that was something they wanted to do.

The restaurant offers a variety of burgers from the Swamp Burger with chili, slaw and pickled jalapenos to Mr. Fungi burger with Swiss cheese, mushrooms and truffle aioli. There is also the Jam Burger with tomato bacon jam and aioli and the Magic City Burger with pimento, bacon, fried green tomatoes and their special in-house “revival sauce.”

Hardee said there is a lettuce wrap option and Gluten-free bun.

“We have the impossible meat-less burger, too,” he said.

Hardee said their burgers are hand patted, made from scratch, and fresh, never frozen.

“There are no shortcuts,” Hardee said. “This is a labor of love for us.”

“Business is good, but it can always be better,” Hardee said. “We are committed to getting better.”

He said their customers have come to know what to expect from them, which is a high quality burger with a twist.

“We appreciate all the business and support from the community,” he said.

The restaurant is open seven days a week and now includes breakfast Monday through Saturday.

To read the full article on SC Now, click here.

Chamber Welcomes The Venue with Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

by Ardie Arvidson

The Venue, a place to hold events, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Thursday with Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce ambassadors participating.

The Venue is located at 1210 W. Evans St. in Florence.

The business is owned by Susan Missy Gillespie. Monday was her first day of business, and following the ribbon cutting, she catered a dinner at the location.

She said she is excited to offer people in the area another place to hold events.

“I also own Missy’s Café at 257 N. Coit St.,” she said.

She has been in the restaurant/catering business for approximately 16 years.

“I’ve been catering so much lately and having to travel to other places that I thought it was time to have my own place,” Gillespie said.

She said now her customers can rent the space, and she can provide the catering or the customer can bring it in.

Gillespie said she can provide space and catering for wedding receptions, office parties, anniversaries and other types of events. She also provides table decorations.

“I want to cater dinner parties,” she said.

She said she wants to be able to provide a nice place for the events with elegant table decorations.

Originally from Mullins, Gillespie lives in Darlington. She said her family will be helping her with the business.

Gillespie said she hadn’t joined the chamber before and thought this would be a good time to do so. She hopes to be an active member.

To contact Gillespie for rental of The Venue or for catering, call 843-304-1866.

To read the full article on SC Now, click here.

Pest Control Specialist Joins Florence Chamber

by Ardie Arvidson

Great Quality Pest Solutions of Effingham joined ambassadors of the Greater Florence Chamber of Commerce on Monday to celebrate its chamber membership. The celebration included a ribbon cutting at the chamber.

Bruce Turner, a pest control specialist, has approximately 10 years of experience in the field. He is the sole proprietor of the business. He opened approximately three months ago and is currently licensed for mosquito control but will be licensed for termites, fire ant control and residential pest control in the next three months.

“We are committed to helping and educating the communities we serve through our experience and knowledge of the pest control field,” states the company website.

Turner worked in pest control in Georgia before opening his own company. He said he liked the customer service aspect of the business.

He said going inside people’s homes requires trust from the customer.

“Once people learned to trust me, I felt like this was the job for me,” Turner said.

He said the most important thing about the job is to know that you have technicians you can trust, he said.

He offers organic and regular pest control treatments.

“Our prices are very affordable,” Turner said. “I will help anybody, especially the elderly. I like helping people. I will work with them to manage their problem.”

On his website, Turner states that his mission is to be a “moving pillar in every community around the Pee Dee area to show common courtesy, friendliness, professionalism and acts of kindness.”

“I grew up in Florence and always knew I wanted to come back here to start my business,” he said.

He is a graduate of West Florence High School, is single and works from his home. His grandmother still lives in the Florence area. His parents and sister live in Georgia.

He is an active member of the Effingham community and is helping organize a community cleanup on July 20.

He is in the process of becoming a member of the Florence Kiwanis Club.

He said from discussions with people in the community he was told the chamber offers networking opportunities and a place to get involved.

He hopes to be an active member of the chamber.

“I hope it will help launch my business,” Turner said.

In addition to his pest control business, Turner mows lawns on weekends.

He likes “shooting pool,” spending time with family, four-wheeling and traveling.

For more information, visit gqpest.com or call 843-799-0863 for work estimates.

Greater Quality Pest Solutions is located at 2605 Javelin Circle in Effingham.

To read the full article on SC Now, click here.