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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

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Though she kept the idea percolating on the back burner for quite some time, Samantha Yerg always wanted to open her own business – namely a coffee shop. As a busy mom and a full-time letter carrier, Yerg, of Gibsonburg, loves coffee and plenty of it (regular, not decaf, of course).

Recently, opportunity knocked. She answered.

On March 1, Samantha (Sammy Jo) will open Sammy’s Joe, and as an added perk, it will be in a location she loves – the Woodville Mall.

“I know the mall has seen some tough times, but I am hopeful for its future,” Yerg said. “I have never stopped shopping there  – I try to go there for everything I can.

“After I heard the mall was purchased by a new owner, I became intrigued about what was going to happen,” she said.

Meanwhile, in recent months, she began to think more and more about starting a business. “I got an accounting degree from Owens and then went to Lourdes College where I got dual degrees in business administration and human resource management,” she said. “I thought it might be time to put my education to use.”

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A recently published survey states today’s youth spend 7½ hours per day on

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some type of digital media.

Seventy-two year-old Oregon resident Ernest Zam says he didn’t have cell phones to text on or X-Box to play with when he was young. His recalls his family not even getting a television until the 1950s.

Instead, Zam spent his youth listening to radio shows like Batman. He also got into constructing scale models and remains involved today.

“I can’t begin to think how many I’ve built over the years, but personally I’ve built primarily my own. I have built several airplanes for other people,” Zam said.

Zam got involved as an adult with radio-controlled model airplanes in 1974 and today is a member of the Recker RC radio-controlled flying club, which meets on Fostoria Road.

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Owned by Northwood residents Pat Meeks, Jay Neundorfer and Casey Klein,

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Despite the risky economic times, Northwood
High School alums Casey Klein, Jay Neuendorfer
and Pat Meeks weren’t “chicken” to start
Chunkies, which opened in August 2009 at
3165 Navarre Ave., in Oregon. (Press photo
by Tammy Walro)

Chunkies opened in August of 2009 in the Reed Vision Plaza, 3165 Navarre Ave., in Oregon. The take-out/delivery business is located in the building formerly occupied by Cottage Inn Pizza.

The three Northwood High School grads (both Meeks and Neundorfer are class of ‘98 and Klein, ‘97) all worked as servers in the restaurant industry at one time or another. That is the only restaurant experience the three had.

“It really is a collaboration among the three of us,” Meeks explained. “We never worked in the business end but were servers before. We all thought it was risky to open a restaurant, especially in this economy. Jay (Neundorfer) and I were talking about opening a gym but that was too expensive so we thought of this and brought Casey (Klein) in with us.”

The name, Chunkies, was the brainchild of Klein’s sister, Nicole.

“She came up with the name because of the chicken chunks,” Meeks said. “We eat them all of the time. We thought we should try it and roll the dice.”

Neundorfer added that discussed the business venture with family and friends and they all supported his goal.

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Toledo water

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