The public has spoken and three winners have been announced for this year’s BizQuest Quinte contest, organized by Trenval.
22 different businesses from Belleville, Quinte West, Stirling-Rawdon, Tyendinaga Township, Tyendinaga MBQ and Deseronto made videos describing their industry and entrepreneurial spirit. A panel of five community volunteers selected five finalists for each of the three categories, Start, Grow, Thrive, which were divided by how long the business was in operation, 6 – 24 months, 25 months – 5 years, 5+ years, respectively.
From then it was the public’s job to vote for their favourite business in a chance to win a prize package valued at nearly $6,000. In total, 2260 votes poured in from the community to support their favourite businesses in their quest.
For the Start category, the grand prize winner was Tammy Girard, owner of The Grit Pit (www.thegritpit.info), a mobile fitness business where the focus is on providing a safe place where moms could connect with other moms, as well as other women, in a supportive environment. Moms are encouraged to bring along their little ones — who often end up assisting them in their workout.
The runner up was Rollin’ Oats (www.facebook.com/rollinoatsquinte), a newly opened coffee shop located at 12 Dundas St W. in downtown Trenton that offers locally made beverages, and baked goods from health unit inspected artisans.
The honorable mention went to Madison, founder of Bitsy Atwold teaching tools (www.bitsyatwold.com), which provides magnetic toy sets that helps youth learn about the unrepresented parts of life like medical & mental health.
The winner in the Grow category was Sugar Mama’s Bake Shoppe (www.sugarmamasbakeshoppe.ca), owned by the Mother–Daughter team of Joanne and Krysten Trenholm. Offering a variety of baked goods like cheesecakes, cakes, cupcakes, brownies and hand rolled donuts, Sugar Mama’s is a family-run business with a passion for quality products made with whole ingredients and exceptional customer service.
The runner up was The Studio in Stirling (www.thestudioinstirling.ca), a business run by Jean McDonnell that offers artisan made home-goods including many works — like watercolor paintings — created by McDonnell herself.
The honorable mention in the Grow category was Lucid Translation Plus (www.lucidtranslationplus.com), which provides French translation services, content creation, proofreading and copy editing to businesses.
Finally, the winner in the Thrive category was Little Stinkers (www.littlestinkers.ca). First launched in 2006 by Janine McLellan and Tammy Noble, Little Stinkers has more than 50 years of combined experience in providing award-winning pet service. From their knowledgeable food and play options, to a fully fledged grooming service, the team continues to raise the bar, year after year, providing top notch specialized services and guidance.
The runner up was Meyers Creek Brewing Company (www.meyerscreekbrewing.ca), who describe themselves as a small batch craft brewery making one of the widest selection of beer styles in the region.
The honorable mention for the Thrive category was TruckRight (www.truckright.com), who provides an All-in-One system that centralizes data, eliminates the need for tracking spreadsheets and maintains regulatory compliance for the trucking industry.
While the winners may have received monetary prizes, the overall goal of BizQuest is about getting businesses more familiar with leveraging social media and content creation to further promote their entrepreneurial ventures.