August 12, 2013

BIZ BUZZ: Delphi auto shop under new ownership

Winamac student wins business plan competition.

by Sarah Einselen

---- — DELPHI — New owners have taken over the newly renamed Complete Auto and Tire at 511 N. Seventh St., but they say little else will change at the repair shop.

Denise and Shane Spencer, a Delphi couple, purchased the former Brown's Tire auto repair shop April 1 and have slowly made some changes, like repainting the floor and redoing the blacktop parking outside the garage, in the months since.

"We're going to keep everything the same," said Denise Spencer, who with her husband bought the business from Darrin Brown. "The same hours, the same services, the same employees."

Some 50 to 60 locals showed up for the shop's ribbon cutting as Complete Auto and Tire on July 31, she said.

The shop employs six full-time workers counting the Spencers, and is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays. The shop also provides a 24-hour towing service.

Staff may be reached by calling 765-564-6281.


WINAMAC — A business plan to bring mobile lunch food outlets to Winamac-area industrial facilities won the area's first student business plan competition this year.

Piloted by the Pulaski County Community Development Commission/Economic Development, the competition involved six students researching business plans and various regulations related to business, then drafting plans for their own business ideas to submit to a panel of five judges from the PCED and the Pulaski County Chamber of Commerce.

Adam Sommers, a senior at Winamac Community High School, won the competition. His plan included launching a food-truck business to offer new lunch options to industrial park employees.

First runner-up Zachary Shidler wrote a business plan to bring bowling back to Winamac through "Winamac's Alley."

Other participants included Austen Brown, Nicole Heims, Kristen Maroney and Kenny Stamper. All six students were members of high school business teacher Brandon Burgess's business management class in the spring.

The winner and first runner-up received Chamber Checks from the Chamber of Commerce. All participants also received prepaid credit cards courtesy of Amy Jo CAntu/H&R Block—Winamac.

The economic development organization aimed to give the students real-life lessons in business, opening their minds to the potential of following entrepreneurial dreams without leaving the community in which they're rooted. It also gave them a behind-the-scenes look at the efforts required to make a business succeed, according to a press release from the PCED.

PCED director Nathan Origer hopes the program will continue at Winamac in 2013-2014 and expand to a class at West Central, with a longer-term goal of opening the program to any high-school–aged student in the county, outside of any particular course curriculum.

For more information or to inquire about volunteering with the business plan competition, call Origer at 574-946-3869.

Sarah Einselen is news editor at the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at or 574-732-5151.