“When I started the Horseshoe Restaurant, my focus was not on just the locals, because inevitably in any small town, you are going to bring a support base of local people, but it was very important to try to pull people off of the interstates and the highways and from around the lakes and the tourist areas to give them something that was unique and had a lot of character and history to it, and really promote and build on that. I think we have been really successful in doing that and it has allowed us the opportunity to really bring a bigger audience into the town of South Hill.” says Scott Rogers, Owner of the Horseshoe Restaurant, South Hill, Virginia.
Now operating for five and a half years and 23 employees strong, Scott saw another opportunity in the town of Boydton.
“I think that Boydton is probably one of the most beautiful towns in Southern Virginia. I see a lot of opportunities here to create experiences for people. The pharmacy in Boydton had a small space, and a good offer that did not require a lot of up-front investment.”
Scott heard about the Microloan Fund from Virginia’s Growth Alliance, where he learned that he could get up to $40,000 to help execute his vision.
“Seeking another funding source would have required much more of my time and resources, so having this available really helped us to keep things moving. The bank processes are so lengthy and time consuming.
I submitted the paperwork, and a week and a half later, we were able to get the funding
and put it in the bank in a very short time, so it was very helpful. We used the funds to help build out the space in the pharmacy, fittingly named, The Apothecary" - A quaint coffee shop, offering sandwiches, salads, and more. Scott says the folks at the Southside PDC in South Hill were very easy to work with and helped him accomplish what he needed.
Quick Service Restaurants are growing more popular in urban areas, where you can provide a service for the people in town during the day, and they can be out the door and eating in a matter of minutes. The town of Boydton does not have an enormous population, but certainly has its share of citizens there to conduct business throughout the day.
Scott believes that by offering something unique in a place with character, you will attract not only the local folks, but hopefully some off the highway as well. His hope is to spawn more businesses using this same model, to be successful in other small towns, where business-only districts are all too prominent.
The Southside PDC administers Mecklenburg County's Lake Country Revolving Loan Fund for Mecklenburg, Halifax and Brunswick Counties, as well as the VGA's PackFund, available to businesses throughout the entire VGA region of Amelia, Brunswick, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Greensville, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Nottoway, Prince Edward and the City of Emporia.
For more information about how you can qualify, visit: thinkbiggervga.com/packfund or call Jeff Reed at 434-200-8066.