Start me up: New owners take plunge

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 26, 2011

By Susan Shinn
For the Salisbury Post
You can just hear the comments from family and friends: You did what?!?!
Despite a shaky economy, new businesses are continuing to open in Rowan County. Here is the story of three of those endeavors: Best Price Pharmacy, A Buff & Beyond and Greystone Salon and Spa.
Best Price Pharmacy
422 N. U.S. 29, China Grove
A recently established pharmacy in China Grove has a new name: Best Price Pharmacy.
“Because we are,” says Andy Caudill, the new staff pharmacist. “It is the best price around, no doubt.”
Caudill is now in partnership with the pharmacy’s original owner, Jim Miles. Caudill, who graduated from UNC’s Pharmacy School, has 18 years’ experience in retail pharmacy.
“My dad told me I had more guts than he ever did,” says Caudill of his new endeavor. “It is a risky time to start a small business, but not if you do it right. We are all about customer service and getting you in and out.”
The pharmacy matches $4 generic prices of national pharmacy chains, but has a small-town atmosphere.
“I wanted to work in the town I lived in,” notes Caudill, who is a cancer survivor. “This community was good to me when I was sick, and I wanted to give back. I see my neighbors, my fellow church members, people I see at Gary’s Barbecue.”
Miles says that he came highly recommended. The two were already acquainted because Miles was Caudill’s seventh-grade football coach.
Miles says, “He’s got a good reputation, he’s established in the community and he’s a family man. He says that having had cancer made him a better pharmacist, that he could relate better to the customers. That resonated with me a lot. It was just meant to happen.”
Married to wife Sabrina, Caudill likes the fact that he’s now home every night to tuck in their kids, daughter McKenna, 10, and son McGuire, 6.
“The small guys are making a comeback,” Caudill says. “We’re getting back to a more customer-service oriented pharmacy.”
Miles points out that customers appreciate the free delivery. “Making deliveries is very gratifying,” he says. “With gas prices on the rise, it’s an even more valuable service.”
“I’ve been a pharmacist for a long time,” Caudill says. “I know how to take care of people. I wasn’t worried about growing the business — and we’ve been growing the business.”
The Best Price Pharmacy staff includes Jeff Moore, Amy Miles, Melissa Sutton, Denise Jones and Kathy Helle. Hours are 9 a.m.- 6 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday. Call 704-856-2579 for more information.
A Buff & Beyond
1103 Statesville Blvd.
Statesville native Tim McGinnis came to town to help his mom recover from eye surgery. On his way back to Miami, he had a heart attack. The doctor told the former plant manager he had to cut back on stress.
“So this is where I am,” he says.
He rode by one day and saw the abandoned gas station on Statesville Boulevard that had been built in 1941.
“I see potential in stuff other people don’t see,” he says.
McGinnis drives a BMW sports car.
“I’ve always been fascinated with cars,” he admits.
In his previous career, he had to have an eye for detail.
Put those two passions together and voila! A Buff & Beyond, a professional auto detailing business.
McGinnis doesn’t stop there. His staff of five also offers mechanical work.
“We are buying a limo so we will be in the limo business,” he says. “We doze, but we never close!”
McGinnis says he’s a fun guy. (Surviving a heart attack can give you a new lease on life.) He’s leased the building since October, opening in mid-February. The outside of the art-deco building is painted lime green; the inside is a grass green. On this particular day, McGinnis wears a white polo shirt, bright green shorts and plenty of bling. The thing of which he’s most proud is the Coca-Cola counter he and his dad fashioned out of an old drink box. He’s been around antiques all his life so it seemed the right thing to do. Red Coca-Cola signs stand out against the green walls.
And he couldn’t be more proud of daughter, Lindsey Pierce, who’s headed to Princeton in the fall.
This former avid golfer has only played once since Christmas, but that’s OK with him.
“I’m dedicated to this business,” he says. “We’re gonna make it happen.”
Hours are 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Call 704-798-5976 for more information.
Greystone Salon and Spa,
1321 Klumac Road, Wallace Commons
Jennifer Wilkerson and Sheila Igo are co-owners of Greystone Salon and Spa near Kohl’s. A haven of relaxation done in soft browns, blues and taupes, the spa has been open since August.
“I was told this was not the time to open a business,” Igo says. “But the spa business is one thing that’s recession proof.”
Instead of buying big-ticket items for themselves, she says, women are indulging in spa services. Igo subscribes to the theory that when the economy goes down, sales of lipstick always go up.
The two started working together in Concord in 2002. Both have always loved beauty and fashion. They felt that this business was something that Salisbury needed — an upscale atmosphere with a friendly staff.
“The talent was right here in Rowan County,” Igo says, but employees were driving to Concord or Charlotte to work.
Igo adds, “Women need a place to come and de-stress.”
“This is their getaway,” Wilkerson adds.
Greystone is a full-service salon and spa. Its menu includes hair, skin care, make-up, waxing, nail care and massage therapy. There are six hair stations, two nail stations and two pedicure chairs, along with a massage room, an aesthetician room with shower area for body scrubs and spray tanning and a waxing room. Greystone’s aesthetician has 30 years’ experience. Packages range from $125 to $310 for a full day at Greystone, including lunch from Longhorn or Olive Garden.
Igo and Wilkerson have seen their business grow, and depend on repeat clientele and word of mouth to make that happen.
“Our customers love the beautiful atmosphere and the friendly service,” Igo says. “They love the way they feel when they leave. When you are in this industry, you serve people. Of course Jen and I want to be a great success, but we want to give back to the community, too.”
The staff surprised Igo with her own spa day in October.
“I see why people love this,” she says of her own experience. “If you make women love the spa experience, they’ll return.”
Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday; 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday-Wednesday; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Thursday; and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday. Call 704-637-2007 for more information.
Freelance writer Susan Shinn lives in Salisbury.