Biz Roundup: Salisbury’s Green Solution Group awarded $50,000 grant from NC Idea foundation

SALISBURY — NC Idea a private foundation committed to supporting entrepreneurial ambition and economic empowerment, has awarded a total of $450,000 in grants to nine North Carolina startups, including Salisbury’s Green Solution Group.

Since its inception in 2006, the NC Idea Seed grant program has awarded nearly $8.5 million in grants to 187 innovative companies across the state, with these most recent awards being the 33rd cycle of the program.

“This group of companies demonstrates that entrepreneurial potential isn’t limited to specific areas of the state or a select few,” said Thom Ruhe, CEO and president of NC Idea in a news release. “From the mountains to the coast, this cohort hails from large metros to Tier 1 and Tier 2 areas of the state; with each either being female-founded, Black founded or veteran-founded and in some cases, combinations thereof. Yet another competitive cycle, and we are confident that these companies are well on the path to creating a lasting impact on the state’s economy.”

Grant recipients were chosen after a three-month application and selection process.

Green Solutions Group created a groundbreaking formulation of the first and only nontoxic tissue preservation and embalming solution used in the $52 billion medical education, funeral and laboratory markets, providing better results and a safer alternative to formaldehyde.

NC Idea Seed grants offer early stage companies the critical funding they need to scale faster. The $50,000 grants are awarded to startups with a proven concept, even if they are not yet profitable. The funds, along with mentorship and guidance, push companies forward and reduce the risk associated with these nascent firms.

Rowan Arts and Ag Tour showcases China Grove’s farms and artistry

CHINA GROVE — The fourth annual Rowan Arts and Ag Tour is scheduled for June 4 from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. with the Rowan Chamber of Commerce and the Rowan County Extension Office organizing the event.

The free self-guided tour for families features 10 farms, businesses and a school garden matched with more than 20 artists to showcase the best of Rowan County agriculture and artistic communities. Participants will see firsthand where their food comes from, watch artists in action, learn more about farm life and purchase farm products and art.

“We are excited to be part of this year’s Arts & Ag Tour to highlight Rowan County’s rural assets and educate folks on farming and what it means to Rowan County,” said Tara Furr, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for the presenting sponsor Rowan County Tourism. “We are committed to the longevity of this tour and will be the presenting sponsor for future years.”

This year’s tour focuses on the China Grove area of Rowan County. Each year, the Chamber’s Ag Committee selects a different part of Rowan County to feature.

With the addition of the Rowan County Tourism as presenting sponsor, the committee has added an interactive kids’ activity, “Little Sprout.” Kids will collect stickers at each farm and learn unique facts about each farm.

The stops on this year’s tour are:

  •  L.L.Goodnight and Sons, 605 Saw Road, China Grove — celebrating their 75th year in business as a farm/feed store and greenhouse. “Pie in the Sky” Food Truck and Bluegrass Music will be featured at noon.
  • Circle D Farms, 350 Saw Road, China Grove — rotational grazing in action with sheep and cows.
  • China Grove Main Street — three official Arts & Ag stops and several businesses/restaurants are open:
  • China Grove Roller Mill & Farmers Market, 308 N. Main St., China Grove — learn about Rowan County’s rich agricultural history; buy local produce from the Farmers Market.
  • Goodman Farm Supply, 338 N. Main St., China Grove — old-fashioned hardware and feed store.
  • Mainstreet Market Place and Meeting Place, 306 S. Main St., China Grove — hydroponic vegetables and entrepreneurial development programs.
  • Millbridge Elementary Outdoor Garden, 155 Ed Deal Road, China Grove — visit the school’s discovery garden.
  • Ranchside Veterinary Clinic, 2365 Brown Road, China Grove — farm animals.
  • Patterson Farm, 3060 Millbridge Road, China Grove — a behind-the-scene tour of a family farm’s distribution and packing house.
  • John Weddington Greenhouses, 1975 Miller Road, China Grove — flowers and plants for your garden.
  • Douglas Vineyards, 7696 Freeze Road, Kannapolis — local wines and Big City Bites Food Truck.

“We encourage residents and visitors to support Rowan farms and agricultural businesses with this educational and fun ‘sneak peek’ into the talent of working farmers and artists who make Rowan County truly original,” said Amy-Lynn Albertson, County extension director and extension agent, agriculture‑horticulture.

With more than 40 working farms in Rowan County, agriculture is the county’s second largest economy.

For more information, visit or

City of Kannapolis hosts virtual fair housing seminar on fire safety

KANNAPOLIS – The city of Kannapolis will host a virtual fair housing seminar from noon – 1 p.m. on May 24. The event will feature speakers from the Kannapolis Fire Department.

Topics discussed will include fire safety, fire codes and smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

To RSVP and receive the virtual link to the seminar, contact Sherry Gordon at 704-920-4332 or

Rowan County Literacy Council awarded $5,000 grant from Dollar General Literacy Foundation

SALISBURY — Rowan County Literacy Council is among the 46 organizations in North Carolina to receive grant funding from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

The funds are part of nearly $8.2 million awarded throughout the 47 states in which Dollar General operates to support adult, family and summer literacy programs.

“Today’s announcement further demonstrates our commitment to serving teachers and students across the nation,” said Denine Torr, executive director of the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. “The Dollar General Literacy Foundation believes everyone should have access to programs that help strengthen reading and build critical literacy skills, and teachers should have the tools needed for quality classroom instruction. We are proud to offer grants to schools, libraries and nonprofit organizations that help increase access to education and inspire innovation, helping to build brighter futures for all families.”

A comprehensive list of grant recipients can be found online at The grants awarded to North Carolina organizations are expected to positively impact the lives of more than 9,088 individuals.

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation is also currently accepting applications for youth literacy grants through May 19 at 10 p.m. CT. These grants aim to support schools, public libraries and nonprofit organizations within a 15 mile radius of a Dollar General store or distribution center in implementing new literacy initiatives or expanding existing ones. Funding may be used to purchase new technology, equipment, books, materials or software to enhance literacy programs.  Grant applications may be found online at

‘Reggie: A Millennial Depression Comedy’ available for digital pre-sale

SALISBURY — The heartwarming, comedic tale of how a man struggling with his mental health finds help in a miniature horse therapy animal, “Reggie: a Millennial Depression Comedy,” is now available for pre-order and will be released digitally on June 1.

A portion of all sales of the film will benefit mental health non-profit organizations Prevent Child Abuse Rowan and Stampede of Love, the 501c3 organization where Kiwi the mini horse lives and works.

Filmed almost entirely in Rowan County, “Reggie” had its world premier in Salisbury at the historic Meroney Theater.  Writer/Director Jacques Belliveau toured the country last fall with showings in NYC, Boston, Chicago, Raleigh, L.A., Seattle and more and was met with rave reviews for the film.

“Reggie: A Millennial Depression Comedy” follows Mitch (played by Jacques Belliveau), whose closest friends intervene after yet another breakup, steering him towards therapy as an option to break his various self-sabotaging cycles. Battling his problems with communication, fear, depression and anxiety, Mitch reaches a breaking point and in a moment of impulsivity he adopts Reggie (played by Kiwi the Mini-Horse), a miniature horse with dwarfism and anxiety issues of her own. As his relationship with Reggie grows, and with the help of his therapist, Mitch struggles to forget his past, forgive his mistakes and grow into the person that he yearns to be while also building relationships with the people in his life who always saw that person inside of him. Also starring Academy award Nominee Gary Busey and Gold selling Hip-Hop artist Spose, REGGIE explores the stigmas around mental illness and the power of asking for help.

Pre-orders for REGGIE are available now at

Rowan Chamber May Power in Partnership deadline approaches

SALISBURY — The Rowan Chamber of Commerce’s May Power in Partnership Breakfast is set for May 19 at 7:30 a.m at Trinity Oaks in Salisbury.

This month features keynote speaker Helen Little, a media personality, writer, speaker, coach, model, meditation teacher and lover of life with a professional journey that has spanned over forty years. She launched her career at a radio station in Chapel Hill, while a student at The University of North Carolina. She later joined the staff of WSTP and WRDX here in her hometown of Salisbury. She now fills homes and cars across the northeast as the midday personality for New York’s 106.7 Lite FM and is the most listened-to non-syndicated personality in radio in the country. Little can also be heard on the iHeartRadio digital network that serves millions and is home to The Public Library Podcast for which she is the creator, host, editor and producer.

The event will also feature the Chamber’s class #29 graduation. To register, visit and go to the calendar under the “Events” section.

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