New Places, New Faces: North Brunswick’s New Businesses 2012

by Jan 27, 2016Business, North Brunswick

Small business is the force that drives much of the American economy. Here in Brunswick County, that force is strong and growing. Several new stores, restaurants, pharmacies and other businesses have opened in North Brunswick County in 2012. Here are a few of them and their stories.

Coastal Dance Academy, Inc.

1107 New Pointe Boulevard, Suite 19, Leland On the second floor of the Cross Creek Commons Shopping Center
(910) 833-8308
Owner: Sara Misiti Clemmons

Sara Misiti Clemmons grew up with a passion for dance. After working in dance studios for several years, she knew that she wanted a studio of her own. In 2012 the planets aligned and she opened Coastal Dance Academy.

Why did you choose 2012 to start your business?

This summer everything lined up for me and allowed me to pursue my lifelong dream — dancing and instructing dance.

Why Leland?

I knew that parents in Leland wanted a dance studio on this side of the bridge; plus, with Leland being such a growing area, we knew we wanted to be here. Then when this great location opened up, we knew we had to go for it.

What types of dance do you offer?

We offer creative movement, ballet, pointe, tap, jazz/hip-hop, lyrical and contemporary. Our classes are divided by age from 3 to adult.

How many students? Who are the instructors?

Well, there’s only one instructor right now — me. I have between 40 and 50 students. It’s a great number to start a studio with. We have a close-knit, family-like atmosphere, and smaller classes allow me to give more individual attention, so I love it.

What’s been your biggest success? Your biggest challenge?

Opening and running a dance studio. I get to share my love for and knowledge of dance every day and nothing could be better. Our challenge has been getting the word out, but as our students go out and show what they’ve learned, we have more and more people finding us.

What does 2013 hold for you?

I’m really looking forward to 2013. We have our first dance recital on May 26, 2013, at the Odell Williamson Auditorium, and I’m planning camps and special classes for the summer. I believe we’re in for a big year.


2013 Olde Regent Way, Suite 220, Leland In the Harris Teeter shopping Center
(910) 859-7357
Owner: Delyn Fritz

Sometimes it seems as if frozen yogurt is taking over the world. Well, Honeybees has made their mark on Leland. Delyn Fritz opened the frozen yogurt and topping bar in the spring as a way to give residents and visitors something a little different for dessert.

Why did you choose 2012 to start your business?

We opened in May of 2012 and, really, opening was the result of an idea that quickly turned into a real plan. Once we saw what we had, we knew we needed to move on it, so we did.

Why Leland?

From the moment my husband and I talked about Honeybees, we knew it had to be in Leland. I wanted to be a part of a good and growing area and now I’m here.

What types of yogurt and toppings do you offer?

Way too many flavors to name. We rotate flavors, serving 10 at a time with one or two no-sugar-added options and one non-dairy sorbet at all times. Most of our flavors are non-fat or low fat. We have fresh waffle cones if you’d rather have a cone than a cup. Our toppings bar has more than 40 items on it, and we always have hot fudge and peanut butter to put on your yogurt.

How many employees do you have?

We fluctuate a little seasonally, but between seven and ten.

What’s been your biggest success? Your biggest challenge?

We measure success by the cup here, and I’d say the biggest success has been opening the shop to such a great reception. Our biggest challenge is being prepared for customers with dietary needs and food allergies. We’re sensitive to their needs, health and safety, and we do our best to accommodate every one of them.

What does 2013 hold for you?

A lot of fun. It’s a blessing to serve happy customers and work with an excited staff. We’re just going to enjoy it, meet some new customers and keep our happy customers coming back for more.

Shoe Center

1144 East Cutlar Crossing, Suite 103, Leland In the Villages at Brunswick Forrest
(910) 371-9881
Owners: Mike and Justin Parnell

Father and son Mike and Justin Parnell run Shoe Center, a business that’s been in their family for decades. Started in North Myrtle Beach in 1978 by the Pearces, Mike bought the business in 1999 and ran it as a one-store operation until this year.

Why did you choose 2012 to expand your business? Why Leland?

With the growth Brunswick County and Wilmington are experiencing, we knew this was the time to open our second location and we knew that this was the place for it. We didn’t even look anywhere else; this is where the economy, the population and the community is seeing the most growth, so it made sense to be here.

What types of shoes do you offer?

We carry more than 30 brands in this store, including Dansko, Merrell, UGG Australia, New Balance, Sanuk and too many more to name; we also have a small selection of dance shoes.

What differentiates you from the competition?

Three things: experience, service and price. Between Mike and I, we have 50 years of experience selling shoes. We love shoes, we love selling them and we love helping someone find the perfect pair. Our customer service, that’s the most important aspect of our business. We believe, and act like, the customer comes first, always. Finally, we think our price makes us different. Every brand at Shoe Center is priced as competitively as our vendors allow, meaning customers can find the best price for the best shoe available.

What’s been your biggest success? Your biggest challenge?

Well, our measure of success is to become a natural part of the Leland and Brunswick County communities and we’re not there yet, but we’ll be there soon. Our biggest challenge is continuing the growth of the store, both customer-wise and bottom line-wise.

What does 2013 hold for you?

This is going to be the year of “more.” We plan to bring more brands into the store, gain more customers, get more feedback to help us do a better job and become more ingrained in the community.

Connected Home

473 Olde Waterford Way, Suite 117, Belville In the Village Shoppes at Waterford
(910) 317-0876
Owner: Chris Hudson

For the last few years, Chris Hudson has been selling, consulting on and installing home theater systems, home speaker systems, home automation and more for new construction and existing homes. This year, as the housing market has steadily pulled itself up, he opened a showroom as a way to say to builders, “I’m here,” and a way to show clients just how great a high-quality home theater can be.

Why did you choose 2012 to expand your business?

For the last two and a half years, I’ve been waiting for the housing market to rebound enough to let me open a showroom. Finally it did, so I made the move and opened a storefront.

Why Leland?

The explosive growth here. Even during the deepest part of the housing slowdown there was still construction going on here. It’s a natural market for a business like mine.

What types of products and services do you offer?

We do home theater design and installation, primarily. We run wires in new construction and in existing homes or businesses. And, of course, we sell almost any type of home entertainment or home automation equipment.

Right now we carry Yamaha, Sonos, LG, Samsung, Polk, Bose, RTI, Martin Logan speakers, JVC projectors and more.

What’s been your biggest success?

Opening the store. To me, the fact that I can afford to open the store and that I continue to get the business to sustain it bodes well for the Brunswick County housing market, so I’m happy about opening the store for a lot of reasons.

What does 2013 hold for you?

A lot more construction and a lot more jobs from builders. So much so, I believe I see the need for a team of installers someday in the near future.

Vapor Shack

324 Village Road, Unit B, Leland
(910) 540-3334
Owner: Lee Kent

Lee Kent grew up around tobacco. Working in a tobacco field at age 12, he tried his first cigarette, but as he grew older, he tried to wean himself off cigarettes.

“I tried the patch, gums, lozenges, hypnosis and medication,” he says. But nothing worked. Until he tried his first “electronic cigarette.” Once he found the electronic cigarette, Lee put down traditional tobacco cigarettes for good.

Why did you choose 2012 to start your business?

Once I started using the electronic cigarette, I knew there had to be other smokers like me out there and I wanted to start a business for us.

Why Leland?

I’ve lived in Leland for 17 years, and most people I know don’t want to cross the bridge [into Wilmington] to get the things they need, so I opened a store here.

What are electronic cigarettes?

Well, they’re cigarettes that are electronic. They have a battery-powered atomizer inside a cigarette-like body. That atomizer vaporizes a liquid consisting of polypropylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, nicotine, food flavoring and food coloring. The vapor doesn’t smell like smoke, has no harmful second-hand effects and is all around healthier than traditional cigarettes. Plus they’re cheaper.

What “flavor” cartridges do you carry?

There are thousands of electronic cigarette brands and countless flavors, but we carry a little more than 50 flavors.

What’s been your biggest success? Your biggest challenge?

Our biggest success has been repeat customers. We appreciate each and every customer and do our best to treat each one right. When they keep coming back, we know we’re succeeding. The biggest challenge I’ve faced has been meeting the different needs our customers present. With so many flavors, styles and modifications on the market, it’s hard to balance what customers want, what sells and what performs the best.

What does 2013 hold for you?

In 2013 we’re going to keep doing our best to meet the needs of our customers. We also hope to open three or four new locations. Right now, I’m working on a franchise package that I hope to roll out in the fall.

O’Leary’s Automotive Repair

72 Gregory Road NE, Leland
Owner: Dennis O’Leary

For seven years, O’Leary Automotive Repair has serviced cars in Wilmington, and drawing customers from the neighboring counties was no surprise given their reputation for high-quality work.  Now, customers in Brunswick County don’t have to worry about crossing the bridge to have O’Leary’s technicians service their vehicles.

When did you open?

We opened in Leland in September 2012.

Why was 2012 the right time to open in Leland?

We’ve been planning to join the community in Brunswick County for a few years, but we got serious about it in 2011. It just took some time in the current economy.

Why Leland?

Leland was a great spot for a new automotive repair facility due to its fast-growing pace and lack of repair facilities locally. Many of the customers who came from Brunswick County to our Wilmington location dreaded the drive into town and the fight with traffic to get their vehicle repaired.

What sorts of services do you offer?

We offer a wide variety of services. With our ASE (Automotive Service Excellence)–certified technicians, there’s nothing we can’t do. To name a few services, we perform oil changes, install brakes and do engine diagnostics, wheel alignments and tire services. We also work on air conditioners, state inspections, timing belts, inspections, tune ups, electrical components as well as perform factory-scheduled maintenance.

What makes O’Leary’s Automotive Repair different from any other place in town?

Our honesty. The car-repair business has always been known to have a few scam artists giving all the good players a bad name. When I started out seven years ago, I decided to tackle this problem head on and instill in our associates to always be honest and upfront with people no matter what. I believe this has propelled our company to be able to compete with the major players in the industry. The second thing is that we offer something other repair facilities don’t — a 12-month, 12,000-mile nationwide warranty through our partnership with Tech Net. Lastly, I’d say we currently have the newest and most state-of-the-art equipment at our new Leland facility. We invite everyone to come in and check out the shop.

What’s been your biggest success?

Our biggest success is no doubt the annual Red Cross Blood Drive we hold. With so many worthy charities in the region, we decided to help the one that can most directly save lives. We bring the blood drive bus to our shop, book the seats — we’ve always fully booked the bus — and give away gift certificates and breakfast to all of the donors. This year we’re glad to add a second one at the new Leland location.

What does 2013 hold for you?

We’re hoping for a good year. Of course, we want to grow Leland to its maximum potential and possibly start looking into further expansion into Brunswick County.

Pizzetta’s Pizzeria

1144 East Cutlar Crossing, Suite 105, Leland The Villages at Brunswick Forest beside Lowes Foods
(910) 371-6001
Owners: Sal and Michelle Lucido, Vito and Lori Lucchese

Sal Lucido has been making pizza for 34 years. At age 14 he started working in his uncle’s pizzeria and he hasn’t stopped since.

“Growing up, all of my family and my wife’s family, they loved to cook, so it was natural to get into the restaurant business,” Lucido says. So if you’re hungry for what many call the best pizza pie in the area or some other down-home Sicilian cooking, Pizzetta’s is the answer.

When did you open?

Early December 2012.

Why was 2012 the right time to open this franchise? And why Leland?

The energy, the economy in Brunswick County, you can feel it moving again, you can tell there’s something good going on here. We’re in front of Brunswick Forest and you can hear the hammers. That’s a good sign. So Leland was a natural fit for us.

What types of food do you serve?

We serve all kinds of Sicilian classics. We have lasagna and baked ziti, we make the best [pizza] pies around, and we’re trying to do things that are season-appropriate. In the fall and winter we have butternut squash gnocci and serve heavier sauces; in the spring, it’s lighter. But people rave about the pizzas, especially our gourmet pizza selections; those really wow our diners.

What’s been your biggest challenge? Your biggest success?

The biggest challenge has been opening, and that’s just the typical stuff with upfitting a restaurant and opening a new location. Our biggest success? Opening this restaurant to a new, bustling community and getting to share our experience and food with new diners and new neighbors.

What does 2013 hold for you?

Great food, great neighbors and, hopefully, a great reception.

Cherubini Orthodontics

1112 East Cutlar Crossing, Suite 102, Leland Next to Port City Java at Brunswick Forest
(910) 371-2323

When Dr. Michael Cherubini opened Cherubini Orthodontics in August 2012, he picked Leland as the place for his second office. Dr. Cherubini saw the growth in this area — and the potential for even more growth — and set his sights on serving patients in Brunswick County. Now, he and three other employees serve the orthodontic needs of their patients in the bustling shopping center at the entrance to Brunswick Forest.

Why was 2012 the right time to open an office in Leland?

We opened in late August 2012 and thought Leland would be the town to be in given its growth. We wanted to get in on the ground floor, so to speak, so we could grow together with other local businesses and serve the families in our new community.

What types of services do you offer?

At Cherubini Orthodontics, we care for anything that involves the movement of the teeth, development of growing smiles, and facial developments in growing children. We do braces of all types, space maintainers, palatal expanders, assistance with tooth interruption and retrieval of impacted teeth. If braces don’t fit into your lifestyle, I am a premier provider of Invisalign [invisible braces], and I see wonderful results with my patients. And if you have jaw issues like pain or grinding which may cause TMJ, we can evaluate your condition and often treat for a pain-free future.

What makes Cherubini Orthodontics different from any other place in town?

I listen to my patients to find out their goals and then develop a plan to blend their goals as well as their orthodontic needs. I believe a smile of confidence is about much more than straight teeth, and, health benefits aside, a confident smile affects your self-esteem and overall emotional well being.

What’s been your biggest challenge? Your biggest success?

The biggest challenge is competing in an arena that’s often viewed as a commodity. Orthodontic work isn’t just about price or speed of treatment, it’s about the best plan of action to meet patient needs, addressing facial concerns and providing a bite that functions well. As a specialist, I’ve studied orthodontics for more than 13 years and focus my continuing education on the latest studies and technological advances so I can better serve my patients. The biggest success? Knowing that my patients trust me and then seeing their new, confident smiles. That means more to me than the fact that I’ve been chosen as one of America’s Top Dentists for seven years.

What does 2013 hold for you?

Long hours and hard work so my team and I can give our patients old and new the care and attention they deserve.

Falcone’s Italian Restaurant and Pizza

2013 Old Regent Way, Leland In the Harris Teeter Shopping Center
(910) 371-3442
Owner: Mike Falcone

Mike Falcone (like Falconay) has been cooking professionally since 1984 when he opened his first restaurant in Whitehouse Station, New Jersey. But life in the restaurant required a break or two and he eventually found his way to Brunswick County for family vacations. When he moved here full time, he still felt the itch to feed people and live the restaurant lifestyle. He opened Falcone’s Italian Restaurant and Pizza, and the diners who know his pizza and pasta couldn’t be happier.

Why was 2012 the right time to open your restaurant?

We opened in July simply because it was the right time. I love to cook for people, to see them happy because of my food. When I saw the opportunity here, I knew I had to open another restaurant.

What made Leland the best place to open?

We’d vacationed here and we were a little familiar with the area, but we wanted to spend more than two weeks at a time here, so we moved. We always wanted our restaurant to be part of the community where we lived, so, we live in Brunswick County and our restaurant is here too.

What types of things do you serve?

Oh, all kinds of Sicilian pizzas and homemade specials. We serve homemade lasagna, veal saltimbocca, rice balls made in the old fashioned way, and, for dessert, zeppole. People love our spaghetti and meatballs – the meatballs, they’re all made fresh with a very old recipe. And, of course, our pizza is very popular. We have a very, very good menu and price – our entrees are around $14 and that includes salad, pasta, garlic bread and leftovers.

What makes Falcone’s different from any other place in town?

We’re Italians doing our food our way. We’ve been doing it for almost 30 years.

What’s been your biggest challenge? Your biggest success?

Our biggest challenge was the biggest challenge for everyone opening a restaurant – getting it all done on time and on budget.

Our biggest success? Well, that’s our opening. Since we opened our door in July, all of our diners have been telling their friends and they all love it [sic]. We’re turning our tables over three or four times and have been very successful.

What does 2013 hold for you?

One thing we need is a bigger dining room. Another thing is our alcohol license. So, in 2013, I want to grow, to have more tables and sell good wine to my diners.

The Fuzzy Peach

1109 New Pointe Boulevard, Suite 4, Leland Beside ATMC Wireless in the Cross Creek Commons Shopping Center
(910) 371-1238
Owner: Samantha and Matt Werner

If you’ve been to any one of the Fuzzy Peach’s locations when it’s busy, you know what it’s like to wait on frozen yogurt. Samantha Werner waited about a year to get involved with the Wilmington-based frozen yogurt sensation. With her help, the rapidly expanding franchise has entered the Brunswick County market to the delight of loyal fans and newbies alike.

Why was 2012 the right time to open this franchise?

We opened on September 21, 2012, but originally we wanted to open the year before. At the time Fuzzy Peach wasn’t selling franchises in our area, but six months after we inquired, they contacted us to say we could open up in Leland. The rest of the time was spent finding the perfect location and doing the upfit.

Why Leland?

I grew up in Wilmington and I never wanted to be too far from home, so, almost five years ago, we moved to Leland. We knew and loved The Fuzzy Peach, but we didn’t always want to drive across the bridge late at night for a treat. We thought Leland would be great because we’re not the only ones who felt like this. Now it’s close to home and our kids’ schools, and we wanted to be involved in the community where we live.

What types of yogurt and toppings do you have?

We always have 10 flavors. Tart (an original yogurt flavor), country vanilla and chocolate are always available. Then we have one sugar free and one lactose free/sorbet on the line. As for the toppings, we have 46 including candies like M&M’s and Reese’s Pieces, fresh fruit and Boba Beads (juice poppers), whipped cream and cherries and more. We also have 10 syrups and sauces like caramel and Nutella. We just started selling root beer floats too.

What makes The Fuzzy Peach different from any other place in town?

We have superior customer service, the highest quality yogurt and toppings, and our atmosphere is clean, bright and fun.

What has been your biggest challenge? Your biggest success?

Our biggest challenge was finding the perfect location. Our biggest success was definitely the grand opening. It was the largest in Fuzzy Peach history. We gave out more than 1,000 cups of yogurt in three hours!

What does 2013 hold for you?

The opportunity to get more involved in our community and put smiles on everyone’s faces.

Sponsored by Wilmington Today
Sponsored by Eternal Fitness Leland