The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Bessemer DDA backs two new businesses


April 13, 2018


Bessemer — The Downtown Development Authority in Bessemer on Thursday supported Pop-Up shops for Brandon Saari and Bridget O’Sullivan.

The two made pitches for the new businesses to open in May.

The authority voted unanimously to support both new businesses.

O’Sullivan is opening “The Yellow Umbrella,” a thrift and vintage store at 306 S. Sophie St. in “the other” Couch Potato location.

She said between her and her husband, they have 50 years of experience in artifacts and antiquing and expect to make both online and in-store sales year around. She wants to also offer open microphone nights, local musicians, and auctions on-site, with an emphasis on Bessemer, its residents, and the talents located in the 49911 zip code area.

Saari is opening a rustic furniture store in the old bakery on S. Sophie St. He plans on mostly making his furniture available online, but also will offer local sales and consulting.

Saari’s furniture shop is located in an area without internet coverage, so the opportunity to rent space in downtown Bessemer where he can also put furniture in the windows on display enables him to reach a wider customer base through internet sales.

DDA members also agreed to purchase 40 banners for Bessemer’s 32 light poles and more than $7,000 worth of trees to spruce up Bluff Valley Park and Mary Street.

City manager Charly Loper said she has heard from local people that DDA is helping new businesses, but is not doing anything for established businesses. In response, Loper informed DDA she would like to send letters to businesses in Bessemer informing them of the facade grant and small development business center that provides coaching and solutions to established firms.


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