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Business

Making beautiful portraits is a snap with

Ruby Ellen Photography

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader

NORTH LIBERTY– Robyn Rasmussen has come a long way from the $300 Minolta film camera she had in 1996.
She was still in high school at that time, but the investment she made to accommodate her interest in photography proved to be much more than a flash in the pan.
Rasmussen, of North Liberty, is now the owner of her own business, Ruby Ellen Photography. Since officially launching her venture in October 2012, she has been busier taking photos than she ever dreamed.

Bienvenidos a Lomitas

Lomitas Mexican Restaurant to open in former Iguanas location

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader

NORTH LIBERTY– Lomitas is a place in the state of Tabasco, a pretty little town of about 4,500 people in the southernmost part of Mexico.
Lomitas is also a new restaurant in North Liberty.
Alfonso Galvan has already brought the flavor of his hometown of Lomitas to Iowa, opening his first Lomitas Mexican restaurant in Fort Dodge 14 years ago. He opened a second location in Humboldt within two years and a third in Webster City eight years ago.

Keeping it local

Salt Fork Kitchen making organic food affordable

“There’s such a bountiful harvest of so many wonderful things right around us, and people still want to go to the store and buy something that comes from a spinach farm in California, or this or that when they could be buying locally.” - Jay Schworn

By Chris Umscheid
Solon Economist

SOLON– Jay Schworn and Eric Menzel share a philosophy, and they’d like to share it with you, served-up fresh, hot and tasty.

Livery to become banquet facility

City council approves new use for historic Solon stable

By Doug Lindner
Solon Economist
SOLON– One of Solon’s oldest structures will soon be back in use.
The livery stable located at the corner of Main and Dubuque streets in Solon is scheduled to become an events center.
At a meeting last week, members of the Solon City Council approved an amendment to the site plan for Uptown Main which would change the structure’s use to that of a banquet facility.

If you bake it, they will come

JJ’s Cupcakes and Creamery holds grand opening in NL

By Eric Hawkinson
North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– A cupcake may be small in size, but it is a powerful creation.
A cupcake, too, can bring people together; perhaps it’s easier to set aside differences when biting into a moist, chocolaty dream, or maybe life’s greatest questions can wait while enjoying a rich red velvet creation. Whatever the attraction, JJ’s Cupcakes and More in North Liberty offers it to the fullest.

Helping students reach their prime

By Eric Hawkinson
North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– Learning geography has never tasted so good at the Prime Time Learning Academy in North Liberty. After one student’s suggestion, classes have been constructing maps using sugar cookie dough.
“I think another real beauty of it is that there’s enough freedom, because we don’t have a set curriculum we are responsible for teaching,” said Prime Time owner Julie Robinson. “It’s a win for the kid to see grownups actually took his idea and made it into a lesson that everybody did.”

To serve and be served

J&A Tap receives outdoor permit

By Lori Lindner
North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– It’s been almost five years since John and Amanda Hruby bought a long-established bar in North Liberty and began working to make it better.
Since then, J&A Tap’s food, beverage selection, live music and volleyball leagues have drawn so many patrons the couple has had to expand their offerings.
On July 23, the North Liberty City Council approved conditional use permit and site plan for J&A Tap, so the crowds of people who come to play volleyball will be able to both serve and be served outdoors.

Just like mi madre used to make

Los Jimadores brings the authentic taste of Mexico to NL

NORTH LIBERTY– Not all Mexican restaurants are alike, and not all are truly authentic in flavor and atmosphere, according to Jasmine Ortiz, one of the friendly faces you’ll encounter at Los Jimadores Authentic Mexican Restaurant in North Liberty.
Ortiz defined authentic as homemade encompasses a wider variety of menu offerings with a different taste and seasonings than found in more conventional restaurants.
“It’s like Mama would make,” Ortiz said.

Tie up at The Dock

The Dock opens under new management, new name

SOLON– John Ahlf believes Solon is hungry for something different.
And he has prepared to serve it up, with a fresh menu, distinctive service and an updated look in the renamed Dock Fine Dining and Spirits restaurant.
It’s not just the name, the food or the new décor that Ahlf revamped in the hopes of creating a new dining experience in Solon, in the former location of Jo’s Roadhouse at 101 Windflower Ln.

Nurturing business

New La Montessori Nurtury to host open house for public July 8

NORTH LIBERTY– Parents of very young children will soon have a distinctive new choice for child care in North Liberty.
La Montessori Nurtury will open July 10 under the ownership and guidance of Lillian Myers, at 70 Circle Dr., Ste. A. The former location of the Montessori Children’s Garden preschool– which expanded into a larger space nearby– has been newly remodeled and designed specifically for infants and toddlers.

Rustic Iron Bar & Grill

The best, essential tastes of Iowa found at

NORTH LIBERTY– The Rustic Iron Bar & Grill is off the beaten path, in every good way.
Its location is set back off Highway 965 on the south edge of North Liberty, which allows for plenty of parking and easy access from the town’s major thoroughfare. The updated décor was personally crafted by the building’s new owners, giving it a unique atmosphere on the inside. The menu, created entirely by co-owner and chef Jeremy Rullman, is fresh and distinctive and designed to give patrons a lot of input on how dishes are prepared to their own individual tastes.

Celebration destination

Solon’s Avacentre provides full service for a variety of events

By Lori Lindner
Solon Economist
SOLON– Solon residents are familiar with Brosh Funeral Services, a local business that has been serving the Solon community and surrounding area since founded by Frank and Anna Brosh in 1885.