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What's New in North Idaho

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Clark Fork, Idaho-

    Here on the eastern end of Bonner County, changes are taking place in the local business community.

     ♦ It first started out as a mini– tourist information stop and the private office of Cabinet Mountain Bar and Grill’s owner Terry Chowning but now, the little corner of the restaurant’s building is home to the Corner Market, Chowning’s latest venture.

    “If we don’t have it, we’ll try to get it,” Chowning said of the new store’s offerings. While Corner Market carries a limited supply of staple items like milk, eggs, cereal, wine and other sundries, the prime focus of the business is bulk food. “We can get the best bacon in the whole world, Daily Bacon, for approximately $50 for 15 pounds,” Chowning said. “We can get bulk hamburger, lean, at $1.78 a pound. You can buy one steak, or 16,” he added.

    Chowning asks people to fax orders into the store by Monday, and pick-up their order on Wednesday. “We’re not trying to do everything, but we are trying to bring in some good prices. The whole intent is to bring in affordable and comparable prices for local shoppers. Competitive prices and priceless service… that’s our motto,” he said.

    ♦ Meanwhile, The Cat’s Meow has undergone a new transformation under new ownership– Tom Williams is now operating the small restaurant and is offering burgers and Mexican fare.

Hope, Idaho

    ♦ Folks who lament the fall closing of the Floating Restaurant, should look forward to the news that Chef Elissa Robbins will be taking over management of Hotel Hope when the Floater closes. Look for more information in our next issue.

     ♦ Meanwhile, there’s still great food to be had in Hope at  The Old Ice House, a project of Bear, owner of Little Bear Trading Co. in Sandpoint. Featuring New York– style pizza, calzones, and hot deli sandwiches, The Old Ice House boats a panoramic view of Lake Pend Oreille. And the food lives up to its billing. “This is great!,” said my friend, Carol, who had just returned from a trip to New York. “I want to come here again.”

Ponderay, Idaho-

    ♦ Still looking for Karli’s on the corner of Pine and 3rd in downtown Sandpoint? You won’t find it there– Ted and Heidi Coey have moved their popular home appliance and entertainment business out to the Bonner Mall, and renamed it, well, Home Appliance and Entertainment.

    The move has more than doubled the display and warehouse space available to the store, and the Coey’s have matched their expanded selection with an expansion in the service department, as well. “We service what we sell,” the Coeys announce, and their new quarters help them do that better than ever. Home Appliance and Entertainment has factory-trained technicians and even makes house calls for television repair.

    The new store also features a demonstration kitchen, and its first showing will begin Oct. 27th. Chef Paul Donohue of Hidden Lakes will oversee the project, demonstrating cooking techniques and recipes. Food is being provided by both Hidden Lakes and Yokes.

    There is also a new sound room at the store, and there are several knowledgeable salespeople and technicians on staff.

    ♦ With three issues under their belt already, Ponderay’s Co-Op are now seasoned veterans of the newspaper business. The Co-Op Country Round-Up first made an appearance early this year, under the direction of Ernie Hawks and Kathy Osborne. Hawks is now working with The River Journal, but Osborne is carrying on and just printed the paper’s third edition.

    The Round-Up is direct mailed to postal customers in Bonner and Boundary counties. If you haven’t received yours in the mail, or would like information about advertising, give Kathy a call.

    ♦ If you haven’t done so already, now’s the time to check out Speedy Auto Glass at their new location on Schweitzer Plaza Drive. That’s just off Highway 95 behind Alpine Motors.

    The new location has allowed Speedy to expand their offerings, offering a new line of Ziebart services that includes auto detailing and window tinting.

    ♦ Big changes ahead with North Columbia Equipment, who will be moving to the former IPS Tack and Feed store next to the Co-Op. The new space will give them a lot more room for product, and will allow a big expansion in their parts and service department. Pick up and delivery is available with service. NCE plans to be open in their new location by December 1.

Sandpoint, Idaho-

♦ No more cars for sale at Benny’s in Ponderay because Ponderay Motors is now in Sandpoint. Benny is located next to Dubs on the Dover Hwy and has greatly expanded his selection of autos. Owners Ben and Serra Woods also take cars for sale on consignment.

♦ Just down the road, there’s more cars as Six Star Automotive’s Rob Repp and Paul Reingold expand their repair business to cover car sales as well. As might be expected from car mechanics, they state that all cars they sell “have a thorough pre-sale inspection,” and that all needed repairs and maintenance are handled prior to sale.

    ♦ If you like music, then check out Main Street Music on, of all places, Main Street in downtown Sandpoint. The store features an eclectic selection of music cds, tapes and albums, plus has an interesting selection of books, collectibles, furniture and music instruments.

    ♦ Finally, if you’re looking for a cell phone, head on over to Mountain Communications, just behind Mountain Stove and Spa off of Michigan St. The store was recently remodeled, and is an authorized sales and service center for both AT&T and Verizon Wireless.

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Landon Otis

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