Category Archives: Businesses

Awards presented at Chamber’s annual luncheon

The Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce held its annual luncheon Feb. 9 at The Club.

City Director of Finance Steve Boone accepts his award of Employee of the Year. Photo by Madoline Markham.

City Manager Sam Gaston presented Director of Finance Steve Boone with the city Employee of the Year award, crediting Boone for the reason that the city has the best paid employees and the lowest bond rate.

Pleasant Grove Mayor Jerry Brasseale accepts a check from Mountain Brook Mayor Terry Oden. Photo by Madoline Markham.

Mayor Terry Oden presented Pleasant Grove Mayor Jerry Brasseale with a check for $1,000. The amount was from the proceeds of the Village2Village Run and was what Oden called a “down payment” called for the future funds they will raise to assist Pleasant Grove with its recovery efforts from the April 27, 2011 tornadoes. The Pleasant Grove donation was a part of Mountain Brook’s Spartans Helping Spartans campaign.

George Ladd was presented the John Jemison Award, and his grandson accept it on his behalf.

Greg King of luncheon sponsor Iberia Bank, Master of Ceremonies Mike Royer, Mayor Terry Oden, keynote speaker Don Logan, and outgoing Chamber of Commerce President Steven Hydinger

Former Time Inc. executive and current owner of the Birmingham Barons, BASS and Seek Publishing Don Logan spoke about his experiences and hopes for the new baseball park downtown.

Current and former Chamber of Commerce presidents gathered for a photo at the end of the luncheon.

For more information about the Mountain Brook Chamber of Commerce, visit


Steeple Arts: Business Spotlight


Steeple Arts owner Deanny Coates Hardy along with assistant teachers Tricia Brice and Hannah Barnette and teachers Annette Troxell and Bee Lewis pause during a rehearsal with 5-6-year-old Ballet & Jazz Class and 9-10-year-old Hip-Hop Class students. Photo by Madoline Markham.

Lola Mae Coates was known for always telling her dance students: “Hold your pretty heads high and be proud of yourself.”

Even though Coates retired from Steeple Arts in 2002, passing the reigns as director on to her daughter, Deanny Coates Hardy, today the studio still teaches that same self-confidence to a fourth generation of students.

“We’ve always said we love children through dance,” Hardy said.

All of the current Steeple Arts faculty took dance from the studio while growing up.

“We teach so much more than ballet,” said Bee Lewis, who has been teaching at Steeple Arts for about 20 years. “We teach manners, we teach classroom skills, we teach them how to be kind to each other.” Continue reading

Nominate your favorite places for Best of Mountain Brook 2012

Village Living is holding a Best of Mountain Brook 2012 competition and wants you to nominate your favorite stores and restaurants for its awards.

Go here for our nomination ballot.

Nominations will be taken through Dec. 12, 2011.

Voting will begin in January 2012. Look for a voting ballot in the January issue and here at

Smith’s Variety: Business Spotlight


Mary Anne Glazner’s family has owned Smith’s since 1976; the store was founded in 1950. Photo by Anne Wood.

Smith’s Variety been Birmingham’s most familiar “high end variety store” since 1950 through moves from Homewood to the current Ritch’s Pharmacy location and then to its current storefront next to the Western Supermarket in Mountain Brook Village.

“Smith’s has received some upgrades over the years; however, we pretty much sell the same types of things that we have been selling for 61 years,” said Mary Anne Glazner, whose family has owned Smith’s Variety since 1976. Continue reading

Gallery 1930: Business Spotlight


Kathryn Keith, Laura Vogtle, Meredith Keith and Amanda Morrissette at Gallery 1930. Photo by Madoline Markham.

Retail pop-ups have been all the rage in recent years. Businesses essentially set up shop in a temporary setting, offering unique and exclusive items for sale. Target creates pop-up locations in Manhattan at Christmastime. Baker and cookbook author Dorie Greenspan did one selling only cookies. The allure of these limited-time-only ventures is that it allows retailers the opportunity to test the waters of their enterprises. Weeklong or month-long leases are a win-win for owners with vacant spaces to fill AND retailers looking to determine market interest.

This is the idea behind how Gallery 1930 came to be.

Located in the front half of a one-story white modern building at the corner of Cahaba Road and 20th Street South in English Village, Gallery 1930 is run by Laura Vogtle and her mother, Kathryn Keith.  The gallery features the work of Laura’s sister, Meredith Keith. The paintings, some small, some oversized, feature a variety of scenes in black-and-white: a horse at rest, a downtown Birmingham city scene, a flower in abstract.  The pieces are grouped in ways that gallery visitors and buyers can envision them at home on their own walls.
Continue reading

Dr. David Hufham: Business Spotlight


Dr. David Hufham with his orthodontic patients Photo by Anne Wood.

From braces to retainers to cleft palates, Dr. David Hufham’s orthodontic practice has been serving patients in Crestline for the past 10 years.

“He is just a wonderful orthodontist,” said Landon Stivender, mother of patient Walton, 14, “and the whole staff is kind and friendly. It has just been a pleasant experience.”

Hufham knows the importance of the impact of his business on the lives of his patients; his own children attend Cherokee Bend Elementary School, Anna in sixth grade, James in third and Henry in kindergarten. “I only do what I would do for my own children,” he said. Continue reading

Player’s Choice: Business Spotlight


Player’s Choice Tennis owner Deborah Standifer in front of the store’s wide selection of racquets. Photo by Mia Bass.

With the reigning 6A Girls Tennis Champions and 6A Boys Tennis Runners-Up, it seems only fitting that Mountain Brook would be home to the only store in Alabama dedicated to tennis alone. Player’s Choice accommodates those who have recently taken up tennis as well as those who have been playing for years with a wide range of tennis gear.

Owner Deborah Standifer is constantly running to different sections of the store to assist customers. She started playing tennis as a kid for fun, and her dedication to the sport intensified after meeting and marrying her husband, Jack, a tennis coach. She is now a mom to three daughters; her 8 year old participates in tournaments nationwide. Continue reading