From the Richmond Times-Dispatch:
Rabia Kamara recalls drinking a sweet, sugary Colombian beverage as a 5-year-old in Silver Spring, Md. It wasn’t until she was at an international market over 25 years later that she came across the beverage again and fell in love with it anew.
Kamara wants to create similar memories for customers at her ice cream shop, Ruby Scoops Ice Cream and Sweets, which is in the works on Richmond’s Brookland Park Boulevard in North Side. There, Kamara plans to add a unique spin on ice cream flavors, with twists such as Peaches N’ Herb, Sweet Corn Basil and Lemon Honey Chamomile.
“We’re trying to create memories, and we’re trying to create moments in your life that you will always remember that kind of stem from what we make,” Kamara said.
Want to kick in to the Ruby Scoops Kickstarter? You can do that here.
Foodē is a new food delivery service hoping to shake up the game in Richmond
While other services charge 30 percent on delivery orders, Foodē only charges 10 percent. As a bonus, ordering take out has zero additional fees.
A Richmond entrepreneur is aiming to create a new food delivery service without the hefty fees at a time when every penny counts and many restaurants are struggling. Foodē, a new app launching next month, is a user-friendly service that delivers great food without crazy fees.
The pandemic has been especially challenging for restaurant owners. While delivery services may be necessary to keep doors open, the fees associated may be causing restaurants to lose money. Foodē aims to solve that problem by offering food delivery services that won’t destroy profits for small mom and pop restaurants. While other services charge 30 percent on delivery orders, Foodē only charges 10 percent. As a bonus, ordering take out has zero additional fees.
Restaurants can test the service for 60 days free of charge. The hardware necessary to use the app is free and Foodē is offering to enter the full menu for the first restaurants that sign up. From there, restaurants can manage inventory, add discounts, and make changes to the menu and hours.
Much like other delivery services in the market, consumers can download an app or use a web browser to view restaurants and place an order. However, the difference lies in the savings. Whether one chooses takeout or delivery, they will pay exactly what the merchant charges, never more. Contactless dine-in and curbside pickup is included as features for no additional fee.
With family in the restaurant industry as both owners and employees, Foodē founders Phu and Anna Nguyen know from experience how challenging fees can be for restaurants first hand. They wanted to create a service that would help, not hinder, a restaurant’s growth.
With no investors to answer to, they don’t have to worry about the pressure to increase profits.
“The goal is to create a platform that is more socially responsible. It’s not about making money as the end goal,” said Phu.
The service is expected to launch next month. Restaurants and grocery stores interested in registering should contact [email protected].
For more information on how to join as a business or consumer, visit go-foode.com.
Lamplighter co-owner cooking up new Chipotle-style breakfast concept in West End
Zach Archibald, co-owner of Lamplighter Coffee Roasters, is betting on a new Chipotle-style breakfast concept near Freeman High School.
From Richmond BizSense:
Zach Archibald is betting there’s a place in the West End for his style of breakfast.
The co-founder and co-owner of Lamplighter Coffee Roasters will launch Surrounding Counties Specialty Coffee Explorers Club, a quick-serve breakfast concept on Nov. 1 at 8801-A Three Chopt Road.
The 1,500-square-foot spot in the Westbury Shopping Center will sell coffee drinks and breakfast food in a to-go format with a cafeteria-line format similar to the Chipotle experience.
Richmond Region Tourism launches Tourism Master Plan during annual meeting
The Master Plan, “Richmond Region 2030, A Strategic Direction for the Richmond’s Visitor Economy,” was developed in 2019 with extensive feedback and input from the community. Consultants asked questions of key stakeholders during 115 interviews and surveyed 1,000 visitors and 2,100 residents, and hosted 50 people in visioning workshops.
At its Annual Awards and Meeting program last Friday, Richmond Region Tourism introduced its tourism master plan, a 10-year strategic vision to enhance the region’s visitor experience while balancing the quality of life for residents. The virtual event, organized via Zoom, also included an awards program and updates from national expert Adam Sacks on tourism trends and COVID-19 economic recovery predictions.
The Master Plan, “Richmond Region 2030, A Strategic Direction for the Richmond’s Visitor Economy” was developed in 2019 with extensive feedback and input from the community. Consultants asked questions of key stakeholders during 115 interviews and surveyed 1,000 visitors and 2,100 residents, and hosted 50 people in visioning workshops.
The 10-year plan aims to responsibly grow the region’s tourism industry while supporting quality of life for all residents. It includes three initial focus areas:
- Experience development: Enhancing and developing tourism experiences within the Richmond region that meet the needs of contemporary travelers.
- Infrastructure and investment: Investing in facilities and infrastructure to maintain, refresh, and upgrade the existing tourism experience, addressing gaps and capitalizing on future growth opportunities.
- Industry advancement and advocacy: Devoting capacity, influence, skills, and resources to projects aligned with the mission of marketing the region as a destination, while at the same time advancing initiatives that improve the destination experience for visitors and residents.
“The Richmond Region 2030 plan takes a strategic and community-based approach to defining an overarching vision and competitive positioning for our region as a destination,” said Jack Berry, president and CEO of Richmond Region Tourism. “This is an exciting roadmap for the future of our region. We look forward to actively engaging and listening to the community as we move forward with the plan and its priorities in the years to come.”
Richmond Region Tourism’s annual meeting also showcased local leaders for their contributions to tourism and the economy.
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Director Alex Nyerges and former Hanover County Administrator Cecil R. “Rhu” Harris Jr. received the Tourism Impact Award, the highest honor given each year. Both were recognized for their long-term and significant impacts to the region’s tourism industry.
Members from the BLK RVA Action Team – Enjoli Moon (chair), Josh Epperson, Amy Wentz, and Free Bangura – were honored with the Chairman’s Award, given to a person or organization who has made the greatest contribution during the previous year. BLK RVA is a collaborative initiative between Richmond Region Tourism and an advisory board of community members focused on developing unique ways to attract tourism while highlighting Richmond’s Black culture and businesses.
As part of the meeting, Adam Sacks, president of research firm Tourism Economics, highlighted data trends and economic rebound strategies to support COVID-19 economic recovery.