Editor’s note: As part of Black History Month in February, The Repository’s weekly Business Roundup will highlight a Black-owned business in Stark County.
MASSILLON – After four years as a general contractor, Eric Ray is taking steps to broaden his business, Rays Reconditioning.
The company is close to completing its first total renovation of a house on Perry Avenue SW. Ray expects to have the property listed in a few weeks. He then will begin renovating a property on Fifth Street SE.
Much of the work handled by Ray when he started his business was for commercial customers. He also has worked in programs with Canton and Massillon city housing programs to help first-time home buyers make improvements and on emergency repair projects through the Housing Development Program.
Ray said he has been working toward a balance between commercial and residential projects. He hopes to begin fixing up properties in Massillon and work more with rental properties.
Rays Reconditioning started in 2018 after Ray spent several years planning to open a general contracting business. Although he worked a variety of sales jobs, Ray had a knack for home repairs and projects.
“I was the like the guy mom called to fix things,” he said.
Installing ceramic tile, carpentry and deck construction are areas where Ray has done much of his work. He’s hung drywall, painted and worked with tradesmen on plumbing and electrical projects.
Making repairs or building something new presents a challenge. Ray said the work often can be like assembling a puzzle, finding the pieces and putting them together.
Meanwhile, working in different sales jobs prepared Ray for the business side of being a contractor, he said. “I took what I learned in those jobs and applied it to this.”
The older house on Perry Avenue SW has been renovated to meet newer designs. Ray looked at a large bathroom on the second floor, split it in two and created a second bathroom for the master bedroom. A wall between the dining room and kitchen was removed to create an open layout on the main floor.
Ray has two full-time employees and works with other contractors. He also has worked with area high schools, helping students who are learning different trades.
Lake Township Chamber resumes annual awards dinner
Awards will be presented to several individuals, businesses and organizations by the Lake Township Chamber of Commerce.
After skipping a year because of the coronavirus pandemic, the Lake chamber will resume its annual dinner on Feb. 22 at the Hartville Kitchen.
Awards will be presented to:
Outstanding Business Professional, Lyn Nisly, owner of the Front Porch Cafe.
Chamber Impact Award, Teresa Fedorchak, sole proprietor of T-Fed Marketing.
Community Service Award, Ross Miller, senior pastor of Evermore Community Church.
Community Impact Award, Kelsey Wood for work to help F.I.S.H continue to assist local families.
Educator of the Year Award, Lake Center Christian School in recognition of 75 years.
Community Betterment Awards to Tara Wiederman, owner of Modern Vintage, Scott Horning and Tom Perry for significant improvements to properties in Hartville.
Recipients were selected after being nominated by others in the community.
“The past two years have been a very unusual time for small businesses and non-profits. We look forward to the opportunity to honor these business owners, leaders, and organizations who showed true ingenuity and resilience during this challenging period,” Chip Weisel, Lake Township chamber president, said in a press release.
Hall of Fame Resort strikes marketing deal with Allied Sports
Allied Sports will serve as agency of record for Hall of Fame Resort & Entertainment Co. on all sponsorship and media opportunities.
Erica Muhleman, executive vice president of new business development, marketing and sales, said Allied will help Hall of Fame Resort attract brands to partner with the company.
“Our focus remains on sustainable growth, and third-party partnerships that offer new sources of revenue will be critical to our evolution,” Muhleman said in a press release. “We look forward to establishing a long-term relationship with Allied Sports and the continued success of our sponsorship and media sales efforts.”
Allied, which formed in 2019, will work with Hall of Fame Resorts development team on brand partnerships for the Hall of Fame Village powered by Johnson Controls, as well as for content packages the company is developing.
January vehicle sales drop
New vehicle dealerships saw sales drop during January, the Greater Cleveland Automobile Dealers Association reported.
Dealers around Northeast Ohio reported selling 16,633 new vehicles last month, a 19.6% drop compared with 20,699 new cars, trucks and sports utility vehicles sold in January 2021.
The association, which includes dealers in Stark and 20 other counties, suspects January’s winter weather and fewer sales days factored into the decline.
This article originally appeared on The Repository: Contractor moves to broaden business to include residential properties