Business

A Stroll Down to Missy Lane’s

By Kenzie Novak and Regan Rhymes

February 26, 2024

DURHAM, NC — In the vibrant arts and culture scene of Durham, NC, a new addition stands out: Missy Lane’s Assembly Room. This recently opened arts venue is not just another music venue; it’s a cultural hub that fills a niche in Durham’s arts scene.

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East Durham Sweet Shoppe: Uniting Community through Decadent Treats and Local Flavor

By Ryan Christiano

Stacy Ramos’s East Durham Sweet Shoppe isn’t just about sweets; it’s a beacon of community spirit and collaboration in East Durham. Through her dedication to fostering relationships and supporting local talent, Ramos has turned her storefront into a cherished gathering place. With dreams of expansion and a commitment to providing jobs for Durham citizens, Ramos’s vision extends far beyond confectionery delights—it’s about building a stronger, more connected community, one sweet treat at a time.

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Durham and Dance, A Trip To Linden’s Dancewear

By Lesley Gonzalez

Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024 By Lesley Gonzalez For the last 16 years, Linden’s Dancewear has served as a pillar of Durham’s vibrant dance community by filling the void that Durham dancers face with a lack of dancewear stores in the area. Renee and Samantha Allen, the dynamic mother-daughter duo who co-own the store, work tirelessly […]

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Durham bus drivers want more safety features in buses improved

By Amina Accram

December 12, 2023

Durham, NC- Bus drivers in Durham, N.C are calling for enhanced safety measures on buses in the wake of increasing crime levels in the city. While there have been only one reported cases of bus driver assault over the past year, drivers are urging city officials to prioritize safety measures.  Violent passengers are pushing many […]

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‘I’m just so happy that I get to make a difference’: The Story of Elijah King

By Audrey Kashatus

December 11, 2023

Elijah King was born and raised in Durham with his mom and little sister. By the time King turned 18-years-old, he had moved 11 different times.  King grew up witnessing things most kids his age couldn’t have imagined. He saw eviction, moving places under 24 hours, crashing at his grandparent’s house and even different pastor’s […]

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In memorium: Kenneth W. Edmonds, publisher of the Carolina Times

By Olivia Browning

May 6, 2020

Editor’s Note: With the passing of Kenneth W. Edmonds, publisher of the Carolina Times, we offer as a tribute this profile of Edmonds, his family and the long, proud legacy of the Carolina Times. Originally published in the Durham VOICE, spring of 2017, this article was written by then UNC-CH staff writer and VOICE co-editor, […]

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‘Just ride this thing on out’: Durham businesses adjust to COVID-19

By Jazmine Bunch

April 2, 2020

With Durham County surpassing 100 confirmed cases of COVID-19, everyone is feeling the presence of the coronavirus. From social distancing to increased health and sanitation practices, the virus has caused everyone to make major changes in their lives. This includes Durham business owners. Those who’ve put blood, sweat and tears in to their businesses — […]

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Durham restaurant hosts Warren campaign event for locals

By A.J. O'Leary

February 27, 2020

Most people come to Zweli’s for the only Zimbabwean food in town, but some come to talk politics. On Friday, Feb. 21, Zweli’s, located in Durham, hosted an Elizabeth Warren presidential campaign event as part of its Dinner Table Talks speaker series. Leonardo Williams, who runs the restaurant with his wife, Zweli, said events like […]

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Sweets restore Durham business owner’s faith in humanity

By Khadijah McFadden

February 14, 2020

Coconut, mango-chile and lavender. You won’t typically find these cotton candy flavors anywhere but in Durham — and they are taking off because of Wonderpuff and its owner Jackie Morin. Wonderpuff is a black-owned eco-friendly business that is just one of the local dream businesses that the nonprofit Helius has helped make a reality through […]

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Direct Affect Bully Kennel helps troubled youth and debunks myths

By Victoria Johnson

February 13, 2020

At first, Durham dog breeder Dwanson Clark just wanted his money back. Six years ago, his fiancee, Candace Taylor, asked him to buy a dog to keep her company while Clark was deployed with the U.S. Navy. In 2016, Clark decided to breed a litter of seven puppies, hoping to recoup the money he’d spent […]

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Family-owned Durham cafe is welcoming a set of wheels

By A.J. O'Leary

Son of the Tater Bread Cafe owner hopes to follow in his father’s footsteps by launching a food truck He started working in his father’s cafe when he was 15 years old. Now, he plans to open a restaurant of his own — on wheels. Harrison Sneed, 24, runs Tater Bread Cafe at 1108 Morning Glory […]

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The journey to beauty in Durham: how a beauty supply store builds community

By Brooklyn Brown and Celia Farmer

January 30, 2020

On paper, her name is Sade Jones, but the people of Durham know her simply as Ms. Beauty. Jones received this title when she started working at Beauty World in Durham, a beauty supply store on 1418 Avondale Dr #2, in 2014. Jones, 33, is a sales associate and hair specialist at Beauty World. Most […]

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Black Girl Ventures supports black business women in Durham

By Jazmine Bunch

Black Girl Ventures (BGV) has found a new home in North Carolina. Five local business women are coming together to establish a chapter of the Forbes-featured foundation in Durham. BGV provides a unique experience to combat the particular challenges that black and brown women face in starting and growing a business. The initiative was founded […]

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Sofia’s offers neighbors a new slice of Angier Avenue

By Carl Kenney

October 8, 2019

Angier Avenue in historic East Durham has seen its fair share of added concrete, construction, and changes to the neighborhood within recent years. This ever-changing landscape we call Durham is becoming a host to new faces, housing spaces, and local businesses at a dizzying pace. One of those newcomers, Sofia’s Pizza, opened its doors to […]

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Young black entrepreneurs launch event Saturday

By Arianna Swain

April 25, 2019

This Saturday, April 27, a local young black female entrepreneur is inviting other entrepreneurs and other interested community members to a launch event at 5:30 at R.N. Harris Elementary School. R.N. Harris Elementary School is located at 1520 Cooper St. and entry is free. Zarie Baker grew up in Robeson County in the small town […]

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Trendy boss lady: Inspiring aspiring businesswomen

By Heaven Gullate

April 24, 2019

           Durham native Tracee Nichole Hester wears many hats. Some refer to her as the modern day “Renaissance Woman.”             She is a “Good Samaritan,” a wife, mother of three boys, motivational speaker, radio personality, business owner, nail technician, an advocate for young and underprivileged community members, and somewhat of a local celebrity after […]

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Zweli’s restaurant: a saga of love lost and found again

By Arianna Swain

April 10, 2019

  The worlds of the elders do not lock all the doors; they leave the right door open. — Zambian proverb   Zambia borders Zimbabwe to the north. And although the proverb above is not from Zimbabwe, it fits remarkably well with Durham couple and restaurant owners Leonardo Williams and Zwelibanzi Moyo-Williams (Zweli). The two […]

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Black Issues Forum revives discussion on Durham’s black-owned businesses

By Samantha Perry and Sabrina Berndt

Although the 22nd annual Full Frame Documentary Film Festival has come to an end, UNC-TV will continue highlighting the work of award-winning filmmaker Stanley Nelson throughout the month. On Tuesday, April 23, UNC-TV will premiere Nelson’s most recent documentary, “Boss: The Black Experience in Business.” The film touches on rarely discussed stories of black entrepreneurship […]

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Bull City Laughs hitting the road for fun

By Tianna Degraffenried

April 8, 2019

Black excellence has done it again with five African-American males starting their own comedy show. It’s not just a regular comedy show with a venue, but a comedy show on a school bus. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, a school bus. The first Bull City Laughs bus tour rolled out on March 15 to a sold-out […]

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Shrimp and Pasta’s Dankery: 22-year-old runs his own food truck business

By Arianna Swain

April 2, 2019

  Ian Burris arrived at his food truck a few minutes after opening, ready to get the night started. He was wearing a N.C. Central jacket to stay warm in the cold air. He went over and talked to his staff and dropped off some needed items. Two of his staffers were already getting everything […]

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‘We’ve always been taking steps foward’: LCCU continues to grow

By Diane Adame and Veronica Correa

February 27, 2019

After nearly 20 years, the Latino Community Credit Union continues to do more than provide North Carolina’s Latino community with a safe place to store their earnings. A credit union founded in Durham in 2000, LCCU works to educate and empower all communities by offering a financial education program and savings, checking, loans and credit […]

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Nzinga’s Breakfast Cafe isn’t just for breakfast anymore

By Keeley Gay

Zuri Reynolds-Hester, from Durham, 29, hosted Nzinga’s Got Soul Tasting Party on Feb. 21 to celebrate the launch of Nzinga’s Breakfast Cafe’s new menu items and longer business hours. Reynolds-Hester opened Nzinga’s Breakfast Cafe, located at 828 Fayetteville St. Suite 110, in 2014 with a specialty in Southern breakfast and lunch food. Now, she is […]

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Alston widening project: progress, but at a cost to small businesses

By Tianna Degraffenried

January 31, 2019

  As the residents of East Durham are still facing hard times trying to get around Alston Avenue,  business are being negatively impacted by the road closure, due to construction. Business owners who are on Alston Avenue are losing their profit day by day. According to many sources, N.C. 55 (Alston Ave.).  is going to […]

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Golden Belt artists adjust to new studio spaces after relocation

By Johnny Sobczak and Cameron A. Rogers

January 30, 2019

There is a new era beginning at the Golden Belt campus in downtown Durham, an art gallery that has been the home of major artistic projects for the community. Golden Belt, originally known for its textile factory, is now embracing the many arts cultivated in the Durham area thanks to fresh ownership. In 2016, Scientific […]

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Threehouse Studios celebrates community through yoga, music, dance

By Keeley Gay

The white, vine-covered building situated along Durham’s American Tobacco Trail is more than it appears. What used to be an old, small Piggly Wiggly has been transformed into a community-focused dance, yoga and music studio. Threehouse Studios opened their doors to the public on Oct. 22, 2017. The idea of a multipurpose studio was developed […]

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Hi-Wire Brewing connects with Golden Belt community

By Spencer Carney

Hailing from Asheville, N.C., Hi-Wire Brewing opened a third site at Golden Belt in Durham at 800 Taylor St. in November 2018. The 24-tap lineup features six Hi-Wire-brewed beers alongside a mix of Durham beers, wines and ciders. Guest taps from Durham breweries fill 18 taps on the 24-tap lineup.         “We’ve really received a […]

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Stores still affected by Alston Avenue widening after compromise with state

By Sabrina Berndt and Elisabeth Beauchamp

The widening of Alston Avenue has affected local businesses surrounding the street, despite a compromise between one of those businesses — Los Primos Supermarket — and the state. The construction, which stretches from N.C.Highway 147 to Holloway Street, is scheduled to end January 2020. Since the Alston Avenue widening project was approved in 2015, it […]

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A day at the Black Farmers’ Market

By Isaiah Ball

November 23, 2018

On the Sunday afternoon of Nov. 18, excited members of the Durham community assembled at 411 West Chapel Hill St., across from the bustling Greyhound bus station for an organic occasion. The upbeat sound from the DJ assisted farmers, entrepreneurs and small business owners in conversation as they gathered under the brightly patterned canopies which […]

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Romanztea: the hidden destiny and liquid sunshine

By Arielle Cummings

November 15, 2018

On the outskirts of the Durham Farmers’ Market – where Foster Street meets Hunt Street, one of the friendliest vendors greets people with samples of liquid sunshine – the best sweet tea. Roman Gabriel, the founder of Romanztea, has traveled thousands of miles physically and spiritually to find himself in Durham, sharing the tea he […]

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Durham welcomes young entrepreneurs fair

By Arielle Cummings

November 7, 2018

Little did sisters Savannah, 10, and Sienna Forrester, 11, imagine that when their father taught them to make shea butter using a family recipe, they would be able to turn it into a business — The Brown Sugar Sisters. Last week the girls were gearing up for their third young entrepreneurs’ career fair and the […]

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Triangle’s CompostNow fights waste

By Deja Finch

October 22, 2018

  Durham locals are turning to an environmentally friendly alternative to dumping garbage. Local service CompostNow has provided a new green aid in reducing the Bull City’s waste. CompostNow aims to fight the Triangle’s landfill issue by turning residents’ food scraps into soil. Meat, dairy, pizza boxes and other materials can be given to CompostNow. […]

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Staff of one grocery store worked hard to be prepared for Florence

By Wade McCreary

September 20, 2018

  With Hurricane Florence threatening off the coast of North Carolina last week, one local grocery store took precautions to be prepared for the storm. Durham VOICE reporter Wade McCreary went to the Food Lion grocery store at 3500 N. Roxboro St. to check out the scene and see what preparations had been made there. […]

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East Durham Bake Shop: Still standing strong

By Arielle Cummings

September 10, 2018

  What started as a small one-person operation, known as East Durham Pie Company, has now blossomed into a cozy, independent bakery shop. On the corner of Driver Street and Angier Ave., in Old East Durham, sits one of the sweetest delights. The East Durham Bake shop, launched last March by Ali Rudel, has now […]

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Meet the owners behind an East Durham gem

By Deja Finch

  A modern revival is slowly underway for historic Old East Durham. But one thing has remained constant for this neighborhood, small businesses. For  local owners,  Ali Rudel and Ben Filippo, running East Durham Bake Shop has been a  labor of love. At the intersection of South Driver Street and Angier Avenue, lies the East […]

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Joe Bushfan’s Commissary: More than just food on wheels

By Antony Nganga

April 16, 2018

  They say love can move mountains, and Joe Bushfan is a mountain of a man. He is big of stature, of smile and of food. Joseph Bushfan owns the Commissary on 2100 Angier Avenue. Although it looks like a quiet location, inside is a buzz of activity. Behind the building, rows of food trucks, […]

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Domonique the fashion blogger finding success

By Tiara Bell Sanders

  Durham-based, fashionably-gifted YouTuber, Domonique Robinson has quite the journey as a social media influencer and owns a make-up line for all beauty lovers. She has been into beauty since helping out her mom in the beauty salon when she was younger. Robinson discovered her passion for doing makeup around 10th grade. “I would always […]

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Ithiopia Meekeda launches Blush Essentials

By Tiara Bell Sanders

  Entrepreneur Ithiopia Meekeda, has launched her all-pure organic line of body products, “Blush Essentials” to the public this year. She is a Durham native and N.C. Central University graduate who believes in her business. “I founded Blush Essentials Natural Body Products in March 2017. I had a soft launch last year to get an […]

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NCWorks NextGen breaks down barriers to youth employment

By Cole Villena

April 11, 2018

 Getting a job has never been a problem for Tevin Guasp. The 26-year-old New York native is hard-working, friendly and eager to learn on and off the job. But, without a high school diploma, Guasp found his career options limited. “I found jobs,” he said, “it just wasn’t a job that I necessarily wanted. It’d […]

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Cocoa Cinnamon’s new café and roastery explore the story of coffee from seed to cup

By Marissa O'Neill

March 28, 2018

  Cocoa Cinnamon’s newest location in Lakewood continues the tradition of community-centered cafés with a twist: the in-house micro-roastery — 4th Dimension Coffee — and freshly made churros. The new shop opened in August of 2017 and is located at 2013 Chapel Hill Boulevard, across the street from Lakewood Shopping Center. It is the third […]

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Evita Loca opens first store in March

By Baleigh Johnson

February 13, 2018

  Evita Mensah is a self-taught fashion designer with a growing clothing line called Evita Loca. She recently got store space at 115 Market Street in Durham, so her local customers can have an in-person shopping experience. Her online store will still be in use to reach beyond the Bull City. Born in Brooklyn, New […]

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The Studio makes tattooing a private practice

By Kenzie Cook

January 31, 2018

A year ago, 2112 Angier Avenue was an empty storefront sitting next to the local barbershop. That all changed last May, when Durham native Samantha Castrovinci opened her own private tattoo studio, The Studio, after 10 years of tattooing and months of deliberation. “I scoured the internet for six months looking for a place to […]

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Doug Speight carries on family legacy in Durham with new position

By Justin Laidlaw

December 6, 2017

  The Speight family has been a staple of Durham commerce for decades dating back as far as the 1930s with places like Speight’s Auto Service, a business that is still active today. Doug Speight, whose grandfather, Theodore, started Speight’s Auto Service, is attempting to carry on that family legacy for the next generation of […]

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If you thought Joe Bushfan was done serving the community – think again

By Taylor Mabrey

November 9, 2017

“My dream was just to help folks less fortunate than myself,” Durham resident and catalyst Joe Bushfan said when talking about his efforts in his community. While Bushfan has been around Durham for a while now, he has no plan on stopping his efforts to help others. In 2020, he hopes to open a diner […]

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5th Fare: More than a tattoo parlor

By Alex Zietlow

November 8, 2017

Just like the skin of the store’s customers, the walls inside 5th Fare — one of Durham’s newest urban galleries and tattoo parlors — are dressed up with artwork. There’s an outlined sketch of a bull with city landmarks filling the animal’s body. There are drawings of sheet music with abstract, unidentified monsters in the […]

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Black Men Run meets new faces weekly

By Autavius Smith and Carl Smith

October 26, 2017

Casual joggers and athletes may get up in the morning to run for all intended obvious health benefits; lose weight, improve self-esteem, and prevent disease. But for North Carolina State University Economics professor Jason Coupet and a few of Durham’s running clubs, exercise is just part of the health equation for an advantageous lifestyle. A […]

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Lyon Parks Facility manager hangs it up

By Tyee Meek and Qaadir McFadden

October 24, 2017

Victoria Phillips, 72, the facility manager at The Community Family Life and Recreation Center at Lyon Park, also known as Lyon Park, for about eight years retired in early October. She is moving to Atlanta to be closer to her family. Phillips is also a former student at the center that was once the old […]

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