The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati
Featured

    by -

    When a car accident almost took everything away for one local woman, she worked to take it all back and then some (including time on a reality TV show). Read on to see how she’s using her inspiring story to help others who need it most.

    Brooke Van Paris’ trialed testimony is now a guiding light for people in the fitness industry and beyond. 

    Paris, a Cincinnati native, began this storied journey on October 29, 2009. “I was attending Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. I had just finished a midterm and was heading home from class. I passed through an intersection and in a split second, my life changed for the rest of my life. I was hit head on. My SUV did two 360s, all four tires blew, my windshield shattered, my engine broke off its hinges and came into the car on my lap, but that wasn’t all,” Paris says. “Once I got out of my car and got help, my adrenaline calmed down just enough for me to notice that the airbag had completely shattered both of my hands.”

    After this accident, she started a long two-year journey of healing. “Over the course of two years, I had surgery to re-break my hands four times. I couldn’t feed myself, bathe myself, do any of life’s simplest tasks alone. I went from a fully independent athletic all-star in high school to a 19-year-old fully dependent college kid. Want to know what it was like? Tie your hands behind your back and proceed to live your life. Tough, right?,” Paris says. “Because I am stubborn-and I needed something constant to focus on, I decided to stay in school as a full-time student. I used Mac Speech and Dictate software to talk to my computer and have it type my papers for me and lots of assistance from my father, as well as my professors. After two years in fingertip to elbow casts, I was finally done…or so I thought. My muscles had atrophied completely away and the person I saw in the mirror looked nothing like the Brooke I knew.”

    She was struggling with doing anything by healthy because she couldn’t do regular life tasks without help. Paris was at an all-time low, when it came to her health, being about 175 lbs. and over 50 percent body fat. Paris took about a year to try her best to lose weight. 

    “They never taught me in school how to workout as an adult, so it was all very intimidating to me. I would go to the gym and I was embarrassed and self-conscious. I wasn’t confident with what I was doing, so to save myself the anguish- I would only do cardio. No one will know if I just do the treadmill every day, right?,” she says. 

    Even though Paris was doing cardio, she was not happy with her results. “If I lost weight, I would gain it back twice as bad. I was discouraged and unhappy. My confidence was gone. I tried diet pills, fad diets, everything. Nothing worked,” she says. 

    Her fitness journey changed when she had a coworker at work invite her to do an obstacle course race with her. “It was a local three-mile race called Morgan’s Mud Gauntlet in Brookeville, Indiana and it was amazing. I loved it. I huffed and puffed my way through the entire thing, but it was so rewarding,” Paris says. “I probably failed about 75 percent of the obstacles, but that didn’t matter because people of all shapes and sizes, all at different levels of their own fitness journey-were helping me-and once we reached the finish line, we all had the same medals. How cool. I was hooked.”

    After that race, she started to sign up for races and ended up completing 48 obstacle course races, lost a total of 30 lbs. and got to represent the United States at the World Championships. She was even on two TV reality shows, Broken Skull Challenge on CMT and American Grit on FOX. American Grit was “A military-inspired competition reality show. They chose 16 professional athletes and put us through military-inspired training drills to test the human will of never giving up,” Paris explains. 

    She first heard about the opportunity through a casting company on Facebook. “After the first Obstacle Course Racing World Championship, I saw a quote on Facebook that said, ‘Your testimony could be the key that unlocks someone else’s prison.’ And with that-I decided to share the story of my accident in hopes that I could help someone else stuck in the same dark space I was previously in,” Paris says. “About two days after that, I was reached out to in my Facebook DM’s and the message started with, ‘We are looking for America’s fittest men and women.’”

    Paris was completely shocked to see receive this message because of everything she had gone through for two years, so she ignored the message and deleted it, thinking it was a scam. However, one day she decided to take their phone call, “and the rest is history,” she says.

    Her run on the show was for only two episodes, but she was proud of her performance because she gave everything she had. “The challenge that forced me to leave was called ‘Ice Cubed.’ It was an event where three women (including myself) had to submerge in an ice bath, get out and do 10 burpees and continue incessantly repeating until one of the three of us gave up. Well-now that you know my background story… never giving up is kind of my mantra and I have absolutely no quit in me, so this showdown was about to get interesting,” Paris says. “After nine rounds-nine submersions and 90 burpees-I collapsed to the ground and my body went into Stage Three Hypothermia. Basically, my body said STOP and shut down all systems that were not vital to survival. I was conscious the whole time, but couldn’t move or speak or anything. I could hear people talking to me and touching me, but I couldn’t respond. That lasted for about an hour and I finally came to the hospital.” 

    She recovered fully from that and she now works at Lifetime Fitness in Mason, Ohio. She is an Assistant Personal Training Manager and a Master Trainer. “I live the fitness life all day every day and I could not love it more. I love being able to connect and help people daily and I have never had a more rewarding career to do that with,” she says. “Outside of my job, I do a lot with Fox 19. I showcase workout tips once a month there! It is so much fun and really informative! I also have my own YouTube channel that I post a lot of At Home Workouts on. I live the fitness life myself! Daily workouts, meal prep, etc. I love to live a healthy life.”

    Paris’ success with fitness is defined by the number of people she can help. “I truly believe my purpose in life and the reason for my accident, is being able to help people with my journey and my talents. I find it incredibly rewarding to help be the person to light the fire of hope for someone who has been struggling,” Paris says. “To give out my and tell someone, I can help you, and then watch their journey to success. There is nothing more rewarding than to see the happiness on someone’s face when they win their life back.”

    Being healthy to Paris isn’t just about being healthy physically, but emotionally and mentally as well. “Basically, making sure you don’t get too stressed, that you work out daily, but also take days for recovery, make sure you get enough water, enough sleep and enough of the right nutrition to fuel your body-including your vitamins and minerals!”

    If you want to keep up with what’s going on with Brooke Van Paris, follow her on FacebookYouTube and Instagram.

      by -

      Faced with a terminal diagnosis, Nancy Dawson went on a search for a new owner of her beloved business. See how the perfect fit was found in a dear friend and how she plans to carry on a lasting legacy. Click here to read more.

       

      Nancy Dawson has always loved making people feel like the most beautiful versions of themselves. That’s why she launched BRIDEface in 2005 and developed it into an award-winning, professional, and personal team of wedding makeup and hair stylists.

      When she created the concept, Dawson wanted to provide brides with an all-inclusive makeup experience that made it easy to look and feel beautiful on their big day. Services for that special day include consultation, makeup trials, hair services, and on-site offerings. Additionally, BRIDEface also offers a makeup line, called FACEing, and makeup coaching. 

      Unfortunately, Dawson has been battling an aggressive form of breast cancer for the past year, seeking treatment from experts nationwide. Sadly, Dawson was recently told that the diagnosis was terminal, so she began the search for a new owner of BRIDEface. 

      As she discussed this search with a dear friend, Julie Niesen, it suddenly became crystal clear to them both that she was the perfect fit.

      As a blogger and marketing specialist, many may not have have thought Niesen would want to carry this torch, but she’s no stranger to the makeup industry. 

      “I’ve always been a makeup enthusiast, from the first time I played with my mom’s Estee Lauder and my ballet makeup as a kid, to theatre makeup in later years,” says Julie. “In college, I spent time as a makeup artist, which is how I met Nancy. We met when we both worked at Saks Fifth Avenue, and later worked together on shoots with a local modeling agency. I stopped working in the industry, but I never lost my love for makeup.”

      Now that she’s the owner of BRIDEface, Niesen says she’s excited to carry on Nancy’s legacy. “She has spent her entire career making Cincinnatians look and feel their best – including me, for Cincy Chic,” says Niesen. “She has been a friend to me, and to many others, and has always had the biggest heart and cared so much about her work, and people. I hope I can continue, and even build upon, her work with BRIDEface, FACEing, and the other projects I have in store.”

      As Niesen continues to build on to what is BRIDEface, Niesen is also being challenged in the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

      “My artists and our clients are my first priority,” explains Niesen. “As of right now, salons are closed by the State. We are not a salon, but we are holding ourselves to the same standard. I am working with clients to reschedule their appointments for a later date. Everyone has been truly wonderful. This is unprecedented for all of us, and we can only get through it by working together.”

      Niesen says that those who are interested in booking future appointments with BRIDEface can do so at brideface.com. “We’ll also be hosting Facebook Live demos for some of our products,” she adds. “Topics that will be included will be teaching Nancy’s signature tite-lining and showing off a few of BRIDEface’s amazing FACEing lipglosses, all of which are for sale. Inventory is available for purchase through the website so customers can get a taste of BRIDEface without leaving quarantine.”

      To learn more about BRIDEface, visit www.brideface.com. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

        by -

        A local woman recently launched a business that delivers healthy, ready-made meals to your doorstep. A service that's needed now more than ever. Read on for all the tasty details!

        Any regular day, a service delivering healthy meals to your doorstep is a good idea. Today, with the recent closure of all dine-in restaurants, it’s even better. That’s the service Heirloom Chef offers with healthy meal delivery to customers in the Cincinnati area. 

        “We focus on both individual meals as well as family style meals,” says Owner/Chef Jackie Djordjevic. “We prepare and deliver to your door and the customer just has to reheat. We work out of the Findlay Kitchen in downtown Cincinnati.”

        Djordjevic says that she was inspired to launch a meal delivery service because she wanted to make healthy meals for busy families.

        “I struggled as a young adult with autoimmune disease and found myself on a journey to changing my lifestyle so that I could have a better quality of life,” she says. “Healthy food doesn’t have to be boring.”

        Heirloom Chef Owner Jackie Djordjevic

        And to make healthy food fun and more exciting, Djordjevic says that she’s always on the lookout for new and interesting foods while also bringing back classics that everyone knows and loves. 

        Those classics are just as tasty as ever, but “cleaned up” a little. “I try to use inspiration from my family and the types of food I saw my grandma and grandpa make, as well as my mom made when I was a kid,” she says. “There is a lot of food history in my family and I like to think I pay a little homage to the wonderful cooks who came before me.”

        Djordjevic says that her experience in the food industry goes back more than 13 years when she got her culinary degree from the Midwest Culinary Institute. However, Djordjevic isn’t the only one working behind the scenes at Heirloom Chef. She says she also has a small team of other inspiring women who help to make the business what it is today. 

        Meal prep and delivery services are available to Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky. Each week you’ll find a new menu to order from and delivery is made straight to your door the following week. 

        Djordjevic says that there are so many things on her menu, that it’s hard to find something you won’t like. “Since the menu is constantly changing you can truly never get food boredom,” she says. “Some of our fan favorites include Shepherd’s pie, braised pulled pork with roasted plantain salad, and prosciutto wrapped cod with a lemon caper sauce. We also offer vegan/vegetarian meals.”

        Djordjevic says that the meals she makes are free of dairy, wheat, processed sugars, and additives. Heirloom Chef will also work with families who have special dietary requests. Additionally, Heirloom Chef is the only Whole30 approved partner in Cincinnati, so the business follows the Whole30 guidelines for preparing the food.

        Currently, Djordjevic is scaling the business with continual growth each week. “We are focused and dedicated to reaching as many local families as we can with our meals,” she says. “We believe we can help busy people find more balance in their lives and we love that we play a small role in helping them do so through this business.”

        To learn more about Heirloom Chef, visit www.heirloomchefcincy.com. There you can subscribe to emails for weekly menus. You can also follow along with the Heirloom Chef on Facebook and Instagram.

          by -

          As wedding bells get ready to ring, we chat with a locally-based wedding and event coordinator to hear more about what inspired her to get into the bridal biz and to learn what’s new this wedding season.

          Photo: SixteenFourteen Photography

          Are you a bride planning your dream day? Dana Renae Designs is a wedding and event planning and design company that offers a variety of services all under one roof. 

          “This allows clients to custom create a package that meets their unique vision, budget, and needs,” explains Dana Renae Designs Founder Dana Propes. “From planning, creating the florals, design with our custom decor line to coordinate the day; we have you covered. Our seamless process allows our clients to save time, stress, and money while planning the wedding or event of their dreams.”

          The vision for Dana Renae Designs was inspired when Propes was working as a designer in a local flower shop. There, she noticed that she found significant enjoyment in working with couples. 

          “I didn’t mind their indecisiveness and all their questions,” she says. “I loved directing and educating them, I loved hearing their dreams and coming up with solutions. I noticed them buying a ton of items they would only use once, spending money on details that didn’t matter, and getting stressed out from just not knowing what to do next. So I took all my experiences as a florist, caterer, coordinator, and designer to create an easier, supportive way of creating the biggest occasions of our lives.”

          From there, as a single mother of four at the time, Propes quit her three part-time jobs in the events industry and ventured out on her own and started Dana Renae Designs. 

          Currently, clients who turn to Dana Renae Designs can choose from floral design, decor package utilizing an extensive private line of decor, full planning for a VIP experience, partial planning to offer ongoing support, coordination/event management, and virtual planning.

          Propes says that the services offered by her company as well as her extensive experience help her stand out from other wedding planning services in the region. She also offers all-inclusive packages that include flowers and decor, helping to create an affordable, easy way of planning your wedding day.

          To help brides through the wedding season, Dana Renae Designs is hosting wedding open hours events in the months to come. “I love working with some of the most unique venues in the Tri-State area, that is why you will find me at BB Riverboats and The Prickel Barn in the coming weeks,” she says. 

          She will be at BB Riverboats Open House on March 15. There she will be decorating and designing the ballrooms on their boats and showcasing some designs in their brand new Riversedge room. “This is one of the most unique ways to celebrate your big day,” she says. “We have designed over 100 events at this one-of-a-kind venue and look forward to many more. You will meet a handful of fabulous vendors, try delicious food from Chef Jesus, and will be inspired by the gorgeous views.”

          Then, on May 9, you can find Propes at the Prickel Barn. “This huge, elegant, family-owned barn will make you feel as if Chip and Joanna have designed it themselves,” she explains. “The Prickel family will make you feel like you are home, the spacious design and elegant chandeliers will create the most beautiful backdrop for your perfect day. You will meet many amazing wedding pros handpicked by the Prickel family at their open house and I will be featuring some of our new decor line, which is perfect for your elegant barn wedding.”

          As far as weddings for 2020, Propes says she’s excited to see what’s to come for brides as they plan for their weddings. She says that one of the most exciting trends in the wedding industry this year is creating experiences for guests. “Recent weddings we have been a part of have had caricature artists, Kona Ice trucks, circus performers, and late night Skyline bars,” she says. 

          Other wedding trends for this year includes flowers. “For this coming season, I see more flowers than ever, from cascading bouquets to dramatic installations,” she says. “Our clients enjoy our program called the ‘Petals of Hope’ where we take your leftover flowers to local nursing homes so your investment is loved by others. We truly believe that everything you put into your wedding day is done with intention and purpose.”

          Coordination is another big trend for the year and Propes says she’s seen a big surge in it. “Even when couples want to plan their own wedding, they don’t want them or their family to have to work it,” explains Propes. Back in the day it was expected that Aunt Betty was going to jump in and help but couples nowadays want everyone to enjoy the day and leave the work to us planners.”

          To learn more about Dana Renae Designs, visit https://www.danarenaedesigns.com. You can also follow along on Instagram and Facebook. You can also contact Propes via email

            by -

            There's a fresh new face behind a longtime Cincinnati retailer. Read on as we chat with the new owner of Knicker's of Hyde Park to see how she plans to make the store blossom this Spring while honoring two decades of roots in the community.

            There’s a new face behind Knickers of Hyde Park: Courtney Barnhart. After 20 years in the business, Knickers of Hyde Park Founder Jenalyn Schneider announced in February that she would be stepping aside and retiring. 

            “It has been pure joy for me over these past 20 years to meet so many lovely customers who have supported our store,” Schneider said on the store’s Facebook page. “Thank you so very much for shopping with us, as we would not be here without you. I will miss you but know you’ll be in great care.”

            Now, with Barnhart in charge, she says she’s excited to jump right in and meet all of the store’s customers. 

            Barnhart steps into Schneider’s shoes with an extensive background in retail. When she took over the store, she not only purchased the business itself but the building that houses it. In addition, all of the employees who work at the store are staying there to continue the history of Knickers of Hyde Park. 

            “Knickers being all about women is huge – it casts a much deeper net than the retail environments I’ve been in before,” Barnhart says. “There was a huge draw, it’s a need a lot of women have, and the store does a beautiful job in having that product and the knowledgeable employees to help them.”

            With new ownership often comes new changes, and Knickers of Hyde Park will see new things coming their way. Barnhart says she plans to bring new lines to the store while also updating the store’s interior with a new color palette, a new mix of vendors, and a new emphasis on loungewear and athleisure apparel – all of which she expects to implement this spring. 

            One thing that won’t be changing at Knickers of Hyde Park is its desire to offer women a space that makes them feel unique, comfortable, sexy, and offers a special lingerie shopping experience. 

            Knickers of Hyde Park is located at 2726 Erie Avenue in Cincinnati. Their hours are Monday through Saturday from 10am to 6pm.

            To learn more about Knickers of Hyde Park, visit https://knickersofhydepark.com. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

              by -

              Learn about an exciting new program that’s extending its diversity efforts to help women ignite their ideas, fuel their passions and access the resources they need to thrive personally and professionally.

               

              Aviatra Accelerators exists to empower female entrepreneurs. This means all female entrepreneurs.

              “We enable women to start and sustain businesses by giving them the resources they need to be successful,” according to the Aviatra Accelerators website. “Through our expertise in business basics, guidance from mentors and coaches, and accessor to capital, we continuously encourage our members to move forward, and we embrace them when they return, helping to refuel and reignite their passions.”

              Participants in Aviatra Accelerators’ new EXPLORE program for Women of Color

              Through the many programs, courses, and curriculums at the nonprofit organization, Aviatra Accelerators now offers EXPLORE for Women of Color. 

              “EXPLORE WOC is a dedicated cohort just for women of color,” explains Aviatra Accelerators CEO and President Nancy Aichholz. “It is our early stage, ideating/validation curriculum. Just like all our EXPLORE courses, it is 9 weeks and the output is a Canvas Business Plan for their idea.” 

              The goal behind EXPLORE WOC is to turn ideas that can be monetized into well-organized businesses. And together, with the entrepreneurs they work with, Aviatra Accelerators offers inclusion for the diverse population in the EXPLORE classes to help keep women of color engaged after the course ends. 

              “We teamed up with Sherry Sims behind Black Career women’s Network, and also a two-time Aviatra alum, who felt we could better engage these women if they had a chance to see more women who looked like them affiliated with Aviatra,” says Aichholz. 

              Thus far, Aviatra has seen great success with the cohort comprised of 17 women who meet at Aviatra on Wednesday nights and offer up a ton of energy. 

              Aviatra partnered with Sherry Sims of Black Career women’s Network to launch the new EXPLORE program

              The 9-week course covers many different topics to help entrepreneurs get their business model going. Some of the topics covered include things under the umbrella of “Setting Up a Business” and include banking, accounting, and personal credit. 

              Not only is the EXPLORE WOC program unique, but all of the programs at Aviatra Accelerators are unique because they focus solely on females and support businesses at all stages and across all industries. 

              “We have served over 2,000 women, have created well over 10,000 jobs, and our women have impressive combined earned revenues annually over $200 million,” says Aichholz. “Aviatra, however, is a true 501(c)3. We do not take equity in our women’s businesses at this time but we do work hard to find them appropriate funding for their businesses.”

              The next event for Aviatria Accelerators is an info session on March 5 from 5-6:30pm. The info session will introduce women to all of the options the organization has coming up this year for start-up support and ongoing business training. “The third Thursday of every month we have a GROW workshop with a variety of topics,” says Aichholz. “We also do Networking Happy Hours.”

              Aichholz says that the women of Color Cohorts presented by Macy’s and HCDC are the biggest news at the moment, but you can keep an eye out for the online curriculum called Aviatra365.

              To learn more about Aviatra Accelerators, visit aviatra.org. You can also keep an eye out on Eventbrite for upcoming events. Aichholz says that workshops and happy hours are for everyone – not just women. Information on info sessions and other events can also be found on the website. 

              To get involved with EXPLORE and Aviatra, send an email to info@aviatra.org or visit aviatra.org/getstarted

                by -

                Cabin fever have you itching to get out and explore? Read on as we uncover a nearby one-of-a-kind getaway. From yurts to castles, treehouses and tipis, and even a renovated train-turned-cabin, see the adventure that awaits a short drive north.”

                Looking for a getaway without venturing too far from home? Hocking Hills, a region just 40 miles southeast of Columbus, may be just the place to look. 

                There is plenty to see and do in Hocking Hills, whether it’s hiking trails or looking for a breathtaking view. 

                “Travelers can take their adventures to new heights in Ohio’s Hocking Hills by staying in one of its unforgettable treehouses,” Amy Weirick of Weirick Communications. “Perched high above the ground, these one-of-a-kind cabins offer visitors the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the region’s natural beauty from an unmatched viewpoint.”

                Weirick says that when it comes to booking a stay at Hocking Hills, there is a user-friendly lodging search available at explorehockinghills.com to allow them to find the accommodations they’re looking for when it comes to taste, budget, and travel dates. 

                “Each of the stunning structures at Hocking Hills Treehouse Cabins creates a centering experience that helps guests relax, reconnect, and recharge,” she says. 

                The treehouses are pet-friendly and boast porch swings, fire pits, and kitchenettes. Each treehouse also has a unique touch – whether it’s a glass-enclosed, circular masters or a secret doorway bunk room.

                Other treehouse experiences can be found in the Maple View Treehouse from Among the Trees Lodging, the Canopy Treehouse at Canopy Ridge Cabins, the Sidney Nook Treehouse with the Corban Cabin Getaways, and the Comfort in the Woods Treehouse. 

                The Boulders Edge Cabin and Tipi Retreat will take you back to the native land of what we now call home. “Experience the magic and tranquility of camping in traditional Sioux Native American tipis, reminiscent of ‘Dances with Wolves,’” says Weirick.

                The Hocking Hills Caboose is a recently renovated, antique train caboose that’s hidden deep in the woods. Weirick says it’s the perfect adventure for families with children, railroad buffs, and anyone who is on the hunt for an unusual escape. 

                “The caboose has been transformed into a fully equipped cabin that sleeps five and features a kitchenette, full bath, and a cozy fire pit just outside the door that overlooks a stunning woodland valley,” she adds.

                Yurts are becoming a popular trend in outdoor adventures, and this unique sleeping arrangement can be found in the Salt Creek Retreats’ Mongolian yurt. “Salt Creek Retreats’ cabins and yurt sits on 60 secluded acres near miles of private trails, a fishing pond, scenic overlook, and a river for swimming,” Weirick says.

                Those looking for the Royal Treatment can find it in the Ravenswood Castle’s Medieval Village, castle rooms, and Fairytale Village Cottages. “The design of Ravenwood Castle was inspired by castles built to defend the border between England and Wales in the 12th and 13th centuries,” says Weirick. 

                While the building is much newer than a 12th century castle, the cottages are decorated the same as you’d find in a medieval town and feature both kitchenettes and whirlpool tubs. There’s also the castle room with medieval flair. 

                In continuing with the royal offerings at Hocking Hills is the Glenlaurel Scottish Inn. This traditional Scottish hamlet is complete with Old World-style crofts and cottages, and aims to send guests to the Scottish hills. 

                Looking for something more romantic? Weirick says The Inn & Spa at Cedar Falls recently opened its newest lodging experience in Hocking Hills. More than just cabins, inn rooms, and cottages, there are now yurt accommodations available. 

                “Each of these year-round, raised, and dome-shaped dwellings are 20 feet in diameter and boasts a private deck, a king-size bed, or two twin beds, bathroom with tiled shower, comfortable rocking chairs, a gas-log stove, microwave, and under-counter refrigerator,” says Weirick. 

                If you’re looking to escape more than just your cabin, castle, yurt, or tipi, Hocking Hills boasts hiking trails, parks, and forests. And with 50 ziplines offered, Hocking HIlls is also the zipline capital of the Midwest. Other adventures include gift and antique shops, canoeing, horseback riding, golf, spas, and more. 

                To learn more about Hocking Hills and the adventures it has to offer, visit explorehockinghills.com or call 1-800-463-5464. 

                  by -

                  It’s the year of the woman and one local entrepreneur is helping women in business across the world unite through community and her curated collection of female apparel and accessories.

                  Today’s women in business are here to empower and encourage each other. One local business owner is outfitting that movement with her curated shop, Girl Boss Collection. 

                  “Girl Boss Collection is a curated shop to empower, equip, and encourage female entrepreneurs worldwide,” says Girl Boss Collection Founder Audrey Bryant. 

                  Girl Boss Collection arose from Bryant’s passion for entrepreneurship. 

                  “I saw there was a lack of gender diversity in the fields I was freelancing in, and when I did my research, I found there were many more fields with this same issue.”

                  Bryant says that she wants to see women not only encouraged to build their own empires, but to become extremely successful with them. 

                  “More than 11.6 milllion businesses are owned by women, employing nearly 9 million people, and generating over $1.7 trillion in sales,” she explains. “My passion is to see these numbers grow.”

                  Although Bryant says she knows her collection isn’t going to change the world, she knows that the women who wear pieces from her collection will. “I have been so inspired by all the girl bosses I have met in my life, and wish to see more fulfilling their own dreams,” she says.  

                  Bryant launched Girl Boss Collection in March 2019, as she was between jobs and doing freelance work. The cat mom and entrepreneur at heart says that she was looking for ways to make her own impact on the world and inspire other women when she came up with Girl Boss Collection to help her achieve those dreams. 

                  At Girl Boss Collection, you will find apparel and accessories that range from sweatshirts and t-shirts to jewelry and fanny packs. 

                  “Girl Boss Collection exclusively works with a female designer who creates designs you will not find anywhere else,” says Bryant. “Between my ideas, and her talent, we have curated Girl Boss Collection to be the No. 1 store for female entrepreneurs.” 

                  As she looks ahead to the new year, Bryant says that she hopes to focus on growth while inspiring the community to female entrepreneurs she gets to work with. 

                  To learn more about Girl Boss Collection, visit www.girlbosscollection.com. You can also follow along on Instagram and Facebook.

                    by -

                    There’s a new type of dining experience taking over the Queen City. See how a local pedal wagon is now showcasing some of the city’s best eateries for a one-of-a-kind culinary adventure.


                    There’s a new type of dining experience in town, one that is a foodie’s dream and a one-of-a-kind culinary adventure.

                    Stuart Naeny of Pedal Wagon Cincinnati says the new event, called The Progressive Dinner, brings together uniquely Cincinnati restaurants for an appetizer and a main course, followed up by enjoying dessert on the Pedal Wagon. 

                    “Hop aboard the Pedal Wagon for a three-hour showcase of Cincinnati’s booming restaurant scene that’s perfect for company outings, celebrations, or a fun night out on the town,” says Naeny. 

                    Groups who want to participate in The Progressive Dinner can be picked up at their Central Business District or Over-the-Rhine offices to eat, drink, and work off the treats. 

                    “We can pick up the group, experience two different restaurants, enjoy desert onboard, and then drop off the group at a place of their choosing within Over-the-Rhine or the Central Business District,” says Naeny. “Food, drink, and tips are all included, so no need to bring the corporate card.”

                    Naeny says the inspiration for The Progressive dinners comes from the desire to feature both new and established bars in town, while also wanting to some off some of the restaurants in the Queen City. 

                    “The Progressive Dinner has been such a hit, that we have since added other non-booze-centric options, like the Cincinnati Mural Tour and Pedal-Power Business Lunch, with more offerings on the way,” he says.

                    When you choose to venture out on The Progressive Dinner, all food, drink, and tips are included. Guests enjoy an appetizer and drink at a soon-to-be-announced restaurant since Kaze closed at the beginning of the year, an entree and drink at Arnold’s, and desert treats onboard the Wagon from 3 Sweet Girls Cakery. 

                    “We also provide an onboard cooler stocked with ice and water, plus the customer can bring your own beer,” says Naeny.

                    The Progressive Dinner is $89 per person, or $1,289 for a private outing with 15 people. Those who have a group larger than 15 can contact The Pedal Wagon for more information. 

                    The Progressive Dinners are held year-round on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday nights.

                    You can learn more about The Progressive Dinners by clicking here. You can stay up-to-date on Pedal Wagon happenings on Instagram and Facebook. You can also contact Naeny at info@pedalwagon.com or by calling 513-201-7655.

                      by -

                      Take a pause and refresh at a new retail space opening up in Short Vine featuring a variety of local businesses to help you live your best life.

                      A group of four entrepreneurs is teaming up with Mortar to launch their very own retail space. With an official grand opening date of Valentine’s Day, Pause Cincy will offer a space that allows customers to take time for themselves. 

                      “The name represents pressing pause on your life and making time for yourself,”  says Mortar co-founder William Thomas III. “There’s an increase demand in the wellness space, and a lot of people are searching for a way to make time for themselves.”

                      In its opening, Pause will include these Mortar graduates:

                      • Matunda Juicery, a vendor of fresh cold-pressed juices founded by Timothy Harris, named for the Swahili word for “fruit”
                      • Perfect Touch Helps, services from licensed massage therapist Lolitha Perry
                      • Diamyn’s Crystal Bar, by Diamyn Rembert, a vendor of crystals and stones as well as host to mediation classes and courses for spiritual wellness
                      • District 78, founded by Erikka Gray, a lifestyle brand and vendor of handcrafted candles

                      The space is inclusive and complimentary of the businesses that team up to occupy it. And since it offers both retail items and personal space in its meditation classes and massages, customers can treat themselves with spiritual and physical wellness. 

                      “Very soon you’ll be able to make your own candle at our scent station,” says Pause’s Gray. “Our space is coming along and we can’t wait to be open.”

                      The Grand Opening celebration for Pause Cincy is currently planned for Valentine’s Day from 4-9pm. The team is excited to open its doors and bring something new to the community. 

                      “2020 is the year I can say that I manifested a store front with some pretty incredible entrepreneurs,” says Diamyn Rembert of Pause Cincy and Diamyn’s Crystal Bar. “I hope you will support us and the work we’ve been doing.”

                      Pause Cincy is located at 2908 Vine Street in Cincinnati’s Short Vine neighborhood. To learn more about them and to stay up to date on news, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.

                      X