Business notes: George Gates invites you to the Farm Table Inn

George Gates is finally living his lifelong dream.

George Gates is finally living his lifelong dream.

Gates, the former owner of Chemainus Village Computer Centre in Chemainus and a past president of the Duncan Cowichan Chamber of Commerce, and his partner Evelyn Koops have taken over the Farm Table Inn at 6755 Cowichan Lake Rd.

Gates holds a Red Seal in cooking and has much experience in the hospitality business, owning and operating a number of successful food and beverage operations in the past.

The Farm Table Inn is an established farm-to-table restaurant and country-style inn, and the business partners are in the process of renovating the inn section of the business and attracting customers to the restaurant with its new and innovative menu.

“Although I’ve done a lot in my working career, my passion has always been in the kitchen,” Gates said.

“My kids are now grown up, so we took advantage of this opportunity. The restaurant is doing very well as word gets around.”

Former Martin’s owner dies at age 103

Norman Martin, the long-time owner of Martin’s Men’s & Boy’s Wear in Duncan, has died at the age of 103.

The family-run clothing and accessory store was first opened by Martin’s parents in 1932 and he worked there his entire working life.

The store is now owned and operated by Martin’s granddaughters, Lisa and Susan Martin, who have run the store since their father’s retirement nine years ago.

“We’ll certainly miss our grandfather, but the store will continue operating as it has for more than seven decades,” Lisa said.

Four Cowichan companies make finals

Four companies from the Cowichan Valley are among 83 companies from Vancouver Island that have been named finalists for the 17th annual Vancouver Island Business Excellence Awards.

Cowichan Woodwork, Mid Island Ink Depot, Ramada Duncan and Westholme Tea Farm will vie with the best of the best in Island business at the ceremony, which will be held Jan. 26 in Victoria.

“This is one of the deepest and most diverse set of finalists we’ve seen yet,” said Mark MacDonald, publisher of the Business Examiner publication, which coordinates the event.

“I believe this is the largest number of nominations we’ve ever received, and the scope and variety of what these businesses do is mind boggling. It’s simply amazing what businesses are doing on Vancouver Island.”

Nominate your picks for Top 20 Under 40

Organizers of this year’s Top 20 Under 40 Business and Community Achievement Awards are seeking nominations.

The awards recognize those under the age of 40 who have made significant contributions to community through business or charitable endeavours.

Nominations by peers and colleagues for this year’s awards will be accepted online until Feb. 18 and should include a summary of achievements, as well as letters of reference.

Entries are open to all residents of Vancouver Island involved in the private, public and non-profit sectors.

The black-tie gala awards ceremony will take place in Nanaimo on April 18.

To access nomination documents or for other information, go to www.20under40.ca