A Southwest-based company for more than a century, Frazee Paint and its team of manufacturers are well acquainted with the unique climactic conditions of the region. Always pulling from the latest technology, their technicians design each of their paint and coating products to withstand dry heat, sparse rainfall, and showers of chewing tobacco from passing cowboys. Their quality paints, wall-coverings, wood-care products, and painter's tools stock the shelves of more than 125 retail locations throughout California, Arizona, and Nevada, as well as international dealers in Mexico, China, and Guam.
Barley & Wine initiates beer-lovers into the world of home brewing with a panoply of beer kits, bottling equipment, and thorough classes on the art of brewing itself. Regardless of the medium, students learn the intricacies of the different brewing processes, from fermentation and malt extract to using yeast or choosing the proper equipment. During in-person courses, accomplished home brewers divulge secrets they've learned after living inside a fermentation barrel for three months. Their online shop contains all of the necessary equipment as well, with ingredients, tubing, and books on the subject.
By teaching martial-arts and group fitness classes, Modesto Power trains competitive athletes and clients simply seeking a healthier lifestyle. The 6,000-square-foot facility partitions classes into three separate studios. The Wood Room houses a dance floor and wall of mirrors, in front of which instructors lead Zumba classes. The Power Room, meanwhile, builds muscle mass with a collection of free weights and is known for using its occupants' energy to generate electricity for the other rooms. Finally, the Mat Room lines its walls and floor with padding and stocks rows of chain-hung heavy bags for mixed-martial-arts training comprising brazilian jujitsu, muay thai kickboxing, and submission grappling. Trainers also tailor sessions for younger guests; kid's aerobic and martial-arts classes teach dance moves, self-defense, and the distractive power of balloon animals.
For Fresh Ideas owner Derik Bakker, flowers are more than just petals and stems. “They stir something,” he explains. “It’s not a ream of paper or a T-shirt. It’s something far more personal.” That stirring is why, three times a week, Bakker’s team pilots a refrigerated truck more than 100 miles to pluck the freshest farm-grown coastal buds. Directly sourcing flowers allows Fresh Ideas to keep prices down and also increases its flexibility when filling orders. Bakker can provide hundreds of flowers in bulk to clients 50 miles away while still handcrafting small floral arrangements for locals.
The unique nature of Bakker’s business also allows for a more personal interaction with clients. Unlike larger companies that are forced to interrelate with impersonal 1-800 numbers, Fresh Ideas staffs floral specialists who go over colors with clients, offering suggestions. They can even special order out-of-season flowers from as far away as South America or the secret NASA greenhouses on the moon.
This attentiveness has made the company a popular arrangement source for area restaurants and markets, and anyone who sets foot on the grounds can see that Bakker's passion runs deep. He and his 17-year-old daughter––coincidentally named Sarah Rose––have spent the last year planting seeds by hand in their own onsite sunflower garden. He tells those who ask that they grew the blooms "the old-fashioned way"—the same way he's grown his business.