Two area companies whose owners are clients of the Northeast Indiana Small Business Development Center (NE-ISBDC) will be among 20 businesses from around the Hoosier state to be honored with EDGE Awards at a ceremony tomorrow (Friday, June 19) at the Dallara IndyCar Factory in Speedway. The awards will be presented to Whitley County business Be Adaptive Equipment, LLC, in the established business category, and to Noble County¹s Sylvan Cellars Event Center in the emerging business category, at an EDGE luncheon hosted by the ISBDC network. The two firms were nominated by NE-ISBDC staff based on being either an existing business with consistent growth, or a start-up business displaying initial success.
Be Adaptive Equipment, LLC, located in rural Whitley County, was established in 2002 after owner Brian Kyler designed a piece of adaptive hunting equipment for a disabled friend. Word quickly spread about this unique piece of equipment and orders started arriving through customer referrals. With a motto of ³If You Can Dream It, We Can Build It,² the firm¹s adaptive equipment allows individuals with physical limitations to experience nature, the outdoors, and hunting. Over the years, Be Adaptive has expanded its product line to include adaptive recreational equipment for all physical disabilities. Current products include various mounts for guns, compound bows and fishing poles; adaptive trigger mechanisms and control devices; and drive-on stands for wheelchairs. Be Adaptive Equipment continues in a growth mode, having experienced a 44 percent increase in sales from year-end 2011 to 2014.
Sylvan Cellars Event Center evolved from a dream to make something beautiful and useful out of an old barn. In the fall of 2012, Nathan and Rachel Schermerhorn purchased an old dairy barn and farmland that formerly served the Kneipp Springs (aka Sylvan Springs) sanitarium north of Rome City, a historic complex that had been listed as one of the Ten Most Endangered Landmarks in Indiana. During more than two years of renovations, the owners invested a significant amount of money and ³sweat equity² to restore the barn with modern amenities while preserving its original charm. Sylvan Cellars opened in 2015 to offer space with ³rustic elegance² for weddings, receptions and other special events. ³We are excited to be able to restore something historical and breathe new life into it,² said Rachel Schermerhorn in reflecting upon their new event center. Future plans are to open a restaurant, brewery and winery at Sylvan Cellars.