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Success Stories

Canyon River

Heather Ripplinger opened Canyon River Spa in Bozeman in 2007, after she saw a need to have multiple spa services in one spot.  Heather was a massage therapist, new mom and wife of a deployed military serviceman, when she thought of the idea to open a full-service spa.  She was often referring her clients for facials and hair services, and decided to open a spa/salon where clients could get all their treatments at one facility.  Canyon River Spa offers massage, facials and other skincare treatments along with nail and haircare services in a luxurious setting that allows clients to relax and rejuvenate. 

Two years into her business a fire caused extensive damage to the spa.  According to the Institute for Business and Home Safety, an estimated 25 percent of businesses do not reopen following a major disaster, but with Heather’s determination and devotion to the business, she was able to rebuild.  Her insurance only covered a portion of the expenses; therefore she had to take... Read More

In February of 2002, Laura Garber and husband Henry Wuensche, started Homestead Organics Farm in Hamilton, Montana.  For over a decade the farm has served as a gathering place for food and learning in the Bitterroot Valley. The farm encompasses 14 acres, including; six unheated greenhouses, 350-foot-long rows of fruit and nut trees, a farm stand, a 10’ x 12’ walk-in cooler, and a certified commercial kitchen. 

This family-run vegetable farm serves as one of the farms within the Community Support Agriculture (CSA) program and an on-site farm stand from summer through fall. Within the CSA program, Homestead Organics offers produce on a sliding scale to its members serving from two to eight people.  Participants in the CSA program pledge to support one or more local farms, therefore growers and consumers share in the risks and benefits of food production. In return they  receive monthly shares of produce, grains, cut flowers, eggs and a variety of meat including pork, lamb and... Read More

A visit to Lisa Wareham Photography’s website, lisawareham.com, reveals not only amazing images, but the quote “Life. It’s meant to be felt even after the moment is gone.”  Reading that quote really divulges what Lisa Wareham is all about.

After graduating from the University of Montana with a degree in Journalism as well as working in various journalism jobs, she stumbled upon her passion for photography, and in 2008 Lisa Wareham Photography was created.  Much like the quote says, looking at Lisa’s images the characters come to life and the “feelings” of that particular moment are felt.  Her journalistic approach is what sets her apart from other photographers in the area.

Lisa started her business in a rented space in the basement of a historic yet run down building in uptown Butte.  Then in 2012 Lisa and her husband decided to purchase the building and renovate it to its previous historic glory.  Lisa quickly turned to Julie Jaksha, Butte Small Business Development... Read More

After recognizing a great love for her salsas in the community of Bozeman, Claudia Krevat started Claudia’s Mesa in 2009. At the time, Claudia was working as a designer for a local flooring business and she gifted her salsa to her construction clientele. She would arrive at construction sites dressed in her Latin-Caribbean flare and offer chips and salsa to the construction workers. Claudia, along with her salsa, quickly became a local favorite and she recognized a greater opportunity for her salsas.

She started to sell her salsas in local grocery stores and began teaching cooking classes, which helped her develop her brand and credibility. Today, Claudia’s Mesa offers a unique line of marinades, chutneys, salsas and dips. She also features pop-up events and cooking classes, which have become the most thriving part of her business.

As a young child growing up in Barranquilla, Columbia, Claudia spent most her time in the kitchen helping the family cook of three... Read More