Ypsilanti Citizen Community Sidetrack

Volunteers prepare for Ypsi PRIDE Day
By Mark Tower
May. 13, 2010   ·   7:09 a.m.

Volunteers and W.H. Canon employees plant flowers in Depot Town while Ypsilanti resident Mike Labadie repairs the planter's brick work on Ypsi PRIDE Day last year.

Each year, residents in and around the city of Ypsilanti carry on a tradition started by a group of community members enrolled in a city leadership program, a sort...read more

Bicycles zoom as flowers bloom
By Citizen staff
Apr. 30, 2010   ·   2:11 p.m.

Riders from last year's spring ride come in after a long trip. Bike Ypsi’s 2010 Spring Ride and Festival is from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. Sunday at Recreation Park (1015 Congress Street).

The weather has turned, the trees are budding and the flowers are popping out of the ground; time for a cruise through town. But don’t be so quick to hop in the...read more

Sheriff Clayton visits Ypsilanti Township
By Mark Tower
Apr. 29, 2010   ·   12:59 p.m.

Ypsilanti Township resident Kathleen Hanadel takes notes as her and other residents attempt to asses WCSO services Tuesday evening at a community forum held at the township's community center.

About 50 Ypsilanti Township residents gave the Washtenaw County Sheriff Office their input about law enforcement in the community Tuesday evening.

The information...read more

Local photographer raising funds for Ypsi Project exhibit
By Adrienne Ziegler
Apr. 20, 2010   ·   2:20 a.m.

Ypsilanti resident Nicholas Beltsos his grandson Demetrios were photographed by Project Ypsi photographer Erica Hampton during a bike ride she took Monday. A former EMU economics professor, Beltsos and his family moved to Ypsi from Dearborn in 1967.

Ypsilanti has many faces, and Erica Hampton wants to share a few of them with you.

Over the past year, Hampton created the The Ypsi Project, a series of portraits...read more

Savoy taking shape as live music venue
By Dan DuChene
Apr. 17, 2010   ·   2:38 p.m.

Local funk band Third Coast Kings play in Ypsilanti's newest live music venue, Savoy, Friday night.

Ypsilanti's newest concert venue is preparing for its grand opening weekend April 23, more than a month after its soft opening March 13.

Formerly Club Divine,...read more

Local developer wins award, praises team

Stewart Beal and estimators Keith Norush and Scott Dickson pose
with a poster of a project the group are working on. Photo by David Gomez

Stewart Beal and estimators Keith Norush and Scott Dickson pose with a poster of a project the group are working on.
Dr. Kimberly A. Rice DDS

Beal says negotiations still continuing on Thompson Block

By David Gomez
Mar. 18, 2010    ·    4:16 p.m.


The U.S. Small Business Association has named local developer Stewart Beal the Michigan Young Entrepreneur and the Midwest Region Young Entrepreneur of the year.

Beal, 26, comes from an entrepreneurial family. His grandfather started a construction company his father eventually took over. His uncle on his mother’s side also ran his own company.

Beal earned a bachelor’s degree in business management from Eastern Michigan University, but had actually begun working on his business education long before he enrolled at EMU at 19.

Beal was 13 years old when he started his own lawn care and landscaping company.

“It was a lawn care and landscaping company that I ran in the neighborhood that I lived in,” Beal said. “I didn’t have a car so I walked door to door to solicit business that way.”

He also hired his first employee at the age of 14.

“By the time I was a student at Eastern I had 20 employees working in various fields,” Beal said.

Beal was quick to point out that his success is due to the hard work of his employees.
“I’m really honored to have the opportunity to win an award,” Beal said. “I can’t say this enough, if the people who work me with weren’t working as hard as they did, I wouldn’t be able to win this award.”

Beal also had help from family members who work with him.

“My brother Patrick was instrumental in us getting this award,” Beal said. “He was the one who went out and worked with the SBA to get the loan that we did from them.”

According to Beal he is also in the running for the National Young Entrepreneur of the Year award as well. His file is currently under review in Washington D.C.

Beal said that when the award was announced he had been having a hard time being as successful as he was last year. The recognition made the struggles feel worthwhile.

“When they announced it I had been having a lot of business setbacks this year, we were having trouble being as successful as last year,” Beal said. “It was really nice to have someone recognize your hard work,” he said.

According to Beal his plans for the future include expanding regionally as well as expanding within Michigan. He would like to duplicate the success his Ann Arbor office has had in other areas of Michigan.

Beal owns more than 30 properties in Ypsilanti, including the 149-year-old Thompson Block in Depot Town.

He said that he would like to do business in Grand Rapids and Traverse City and possibly expand into Chicago. His organization has recently opened an office in Toledo.

In Ypsilanti, Beal said he has been in negotiations with City Manager Ed Koryzno about the traffic control order allowing support scaffolding for the Thompson Block's facade to extend into the public right-of-way since the building was ravaged by fire in September.

Earlier this month City Council voted to deny a time extension for the traffic control order and requested to have city staff pursue a legal route to have the support scaffolding removed.

“I'm pretty confident that we can work out a good compromise that will solve a lot of City concerns and will allow us to complete our work,” Beal said.

Beal still has plans to develop the undamaged northern portion of the building into a multi-level bar and restaurant.

Beal will receive his awards on April 29, during the sixth annual Michigan Celebrates Small Business awards event at the Lansing Center in Lansing. Governor Jennifer Granholm will be the keynote speaker at the event.

On the Web:
Event Web site

Related article:
City Council denies extension for Thompson Block



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