The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a number of challenges for local businesses during the past two years. Most have been able to weather the storm, with several looking forward to celebrate significant milestones in 2022.
Critter Jungle will be celebratung 36 years in business this year including five years in Orléans; Sure Print & Graphics and Robertson Rent-All will both be marking 30 years in business, and Joe’s Barbershop in Place d’Orléans will be celebrating their 35th anniversary.
Owner Joe Valenti began cutting hair nearly 50 years ago. His first barbershop was located in Place de Ville where he cut hair for civil servants working in the complex during the 70s and early 80s.
In 1987, he decided to move into Place d’Orléans, where he has become somewhat of a local institution.
Although the COVID pandemic has prevented him from working full-time in the shop, he makes it a point to drop in several times a week to chat with the regulars, many of whom are second- and third-generation customers.
Monica Alongi moved to Orléans from the west coast with her family in 1996 as a 17-year-old. Her father wanted to open a Sure Copy franchise and he settled on Orléans as the ideal location.
Although they started their business at the same location they currently occupy, in those early days they took up just 300 sq. ft.
Two other businesses shared the building, including a driving school.
The business has grown over the years with Monica taking on a more prominent roll to the point where she is now the principle owner and the business occupies the entire building. Today, Sure Print & Graphics has clients all over Canada.
Robertson Rent-All is another family-owned business with a modest beginning. Don and Neta Robertson started the equipment rental company in 1992, long before there was a Home Depot, or a Lowes in the area.
Around 10 years ago, they handed over the day-to-day operation of the business to their sons Cameron and D.J. who recently opened two additional locations in Kanata and Findlay Creek.
In 2012, the Robertsons received the Rooty Award as the Rental Operator of the Year in Canada by the Canadian Rental Service magazine.
Sticking to the theme of family-run busi-nesses celebrating milestones in 2022, Critter Jungle will be celebrating its 36th anniversary this year.
The pet supply store was started by brothers Kelvin and Jeff Stanke in 1986 in Hampton Park Plaza. Five years ago, they decided to open a second location in the Orléans Garden Shopping Plaza where they have built up a loyal clientele thanks to their focus on customer service. The business was voted Ottawa’s top pet store in 2016 by Faces Magazine and they recently received a Gems of Innes Ward as Favourite Retail Business.
Although Caravela Restaurante has not been around as long as the previously mentioned businesses, the husband and wife team of Fernando and Alzira Diniz are immensely proud of the fact that they recently celebrated the fifth anniversary in business.
The restaurant opened on Boxing Day 2016 and has been going strong ever since, even during the pandemic. The establishment specializes in Portuguese cuisine, especially seafood dishes native to the Azores.