Author: Cindy Chittenden

Essex man moonlights as brewer

Essex resident Phil Kaszuba isn’t someone who sits around watching television on any given night. Instead, the 58-year-old works during the day as an engineer and, on nights and weekends, at Burlington’s Queen City Brewery, which he co-owns. What he didn’t see coming, however, was the struggle he would face with time management. “That’s the biggest challenge,” he said. “In my full-time job, I often put in more than 40 hours per week, and with the brewery, I do all the external planning, including beer festivals in Vermont throughout the summer.” To balance out his stress, Kaszuba fits in...

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Handyman sees good fortune

Rick Golder, owner of VSMART, a handyman business in Essex, smiled as he recalled some of his most memorable customer requests. “One of my clients had a bat flying around her house at 6:30 at night,” Golder said, laughing. “I went over with a tennis racket and killed it. I have another elderly lady. Her daughter lives in Australia, so I’m an international company now. Her daughter sends me emails twice a year asking me to pick up a bucket of chicken at Kentucky Fried Chicken for her mother. She pays for me to go get it, and I...

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Exhibit A: GALLERY to showcase Waters’ work

In 2016, Tom Waters dared to try something most people only dream about. He walked away from his website design business to follow his calling as a full-time artist. It started in 2012 when Carolyn, Waters’ wife of 22 years, started scoping out artwork to hang on a large empty wall in her Essex hypnotherapy office. He took notice and came up with a fun idea to try while his wife left on a week’s vacation. “I went into A.C. Moore thinking, ‘Let’s get back into painting, Tom, after 30 years’,” he said with a chuckle. He bought three...

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Sleamaker never stops innovating

Tucked up against the woods on Allen Martin Drive sits the headquarters of Vasa, a company that has designed and sold more than 40,000 pieces of exercise equipment to Olympic athletes, coaches, rehabilitation centers, gyms and international dealers. Rob Sleamaker has owned and operated Vasa for 29 years. On any given day, he can be found biking the nine-mile stretch to and from his house in Underhill to his Essex office. At an age when most would be thinking about retiring, 60-year-old Sleamaker is all about growth. Sleamaker was born into a family of entrepreneurs. His grandfather sold real...

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ReBoot steers coach back on track

Linda Atkins, owner of ReBoot Coaching VT, defines the word resilience, proving if someone has the right attitude, he or she can overcome setback after setback and come out on top. At 50 years old, Atkins left her job as a heating and air conditioning technician to open a business that provides one-on-one personal training sessions in her Essex Jct. studio. “I can’t believe I get to do this every day,” Atkins said. “I feel blessed.” Despite taking to fitness and winning statewide martial arts competitions from an early age, the native Vermonter didn’t have an easy road. She...

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