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Feb. 19 - March 4, 2011 www.SanTanSun.com


Relentlessly local coverage of Southern Chandler and our neighboring communities s


Chandler ‘good business’ for new restaurants, retail


by Miriam Van Scott


While most of the Valley of the Sun area continues to grapple with bad fi scal news and grim predictions about the economy, Chandler is experiencing an entirely different phenomenon, according to recent data. During the past few months, Chandler has seen a boom in commercial activity, with dozens of restaurants and retail stores recently opening around town and others planning to open their doors soon. These new establishments include everything national chains, regional favorites and independent shops run by SanTan Sun area entrepreneurs.


STSN photo by Gordon Murray


NOW OPEN: Oriental Jade’s LuDan shows off the newly renovated restaurant, now open on the northwest corner of Queen Creek and Alma School, taking the space previously occupied by Primo’s.


“A couple of trends seem to be evident,” says James Smith, an economic development specialist for the city. “Businesses are taking note of the solid base industry activity, with Chandler often a destination for ‘fi rst in market’ restaurants and retailers. We are frequently told by brokers and property owners that when new retailers seek to come into the market, Chandler is typically one of the two to three locations they target.”


See Good business Page 6


Spring fashion ins, outs Earthy animal prints stampede skinny jeans


by Alison Stanton


Fashion trends come and go, says Yaa Arens, owner of Enclave, a clothing boutique in Downtown Ocotillo, but one thing remains constant: no matter the state of the economy, women will always fi nd a way to shop for clothes.


“I think fashion is important to women and will always be because it gives one a sense of individual identity,” Arens says. “It is one of those singular things that sets one apart and at the same time allows one the freedom for self expression. I can probably equate it to how sports are for men – that is how fashion is for women. It is that sense of inner competition yet camaraderie all at the


same time.”


Arens, who focuses on obtaining pieces from mid- range designers who are affordable, practical and yet create unique pieces, says animal prints are especially hot right now, particularly on accessories. “There is also focus on a lot of earth-tone colors such as coral, blues, browns, greens and lavender,” she says. “There is also a lot of focus on classic, sophisticated cuts that are reminiscent of the ‘50s and ‘60s while still ensuring emphasis on fl attering women’s fi gures and curves.”


See Fashion Page 12 Designer ‘sews’ seeds of success by K. M. Lang


A recently opened storefront at Chandler’s Santan Gateway South displays bridal gowns in the window and a banner overhead reading “Gemma’s Sewing & Alterations.”


For Cooper Commons resident Gemma Vigneaux, the establishment is more than an entrepreneurial endeavor.


It’s a milestone on a long, uphill climb that began when she was a child in the Philippines. “I fi nally fulfi lled my dream of having my own sewing business,” marvels Vigneaux. “Even though I’m really tired – I work 12, 13, sometimes even 16 hours a day – it’s very satisfying knowing that it’s my own gig.” Vigneaux developed a passionate interest in sewing at


Ahwatukee Foothills Each Keller Williams® Offi ce is Independently Owned and Operated


Steve Horn 602-410-1656


• Take advantage of this market


• Strategies on buying bank owned vs. short sale


www.ShortSalesDoneEasy.com


Chandler redesigns website


Community Page 10 Mosaic Dentistry Business Page 13


‘9 to 5’ to Gammage AZ Arts Page 23


Barro’s Pizza Neighbors Page 41


Clip it! Center spread


the age of 6 after watching her mother, a professional tailor, ply her trade in the family’s home. Although Vigneaux’s mother could create dance costumes, bridal gowns and uniforms without using a pattern, she stubbornly refused to share her expertise with her daughter.


See Designer Page 12 INSIDE


Business . . . . . . . . .13-22 AZ Arts . . . . . . . . .23-30 Things to do . . . . . . .32-33 Opinion . . . . . . . . . 34-35 Neighbors . . . . . . . . 41-49 Youth . . . . . . . . . . 51-61 Spirituality . . . . . . . 63-65 Directory . . . . . . . .66-68 Classifieds . . . . . . . .69-70 Where to eat . . . . . .71-74


Camps +


explorations = spring break fun


by Ann N. Videan, APR


Spring break is on the horizon, and families looking to partake in entertaining, educational camp options during the March 14 through 28 intersession will fi nd excellent choices among community offerings.


Submitted photo


NATURAL FUN: Students work on a nature project at the Environmental Education Center.


See Spring break Page 8


STSN photo by Gordon Murray


FASHIONISTA: Clothing boutique owner Yaa Arens says earth-tone colors are hot for spring.


Coupons Inside SAVE MONEY


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