Encounters

encounters

Tory Kassabaum Sells Local Flowers to Support Nonprofits

Photos by L.G. Patterson and Tory Kassabaum Flowers are used every day to celebrate life. Whether it’s a wedding, an anniversary, a holiday, a special occasion, giving thanks to someone, apologizing to a loved one or even recognizing loss, flowers are most used to bring joy with their vibrant colors, pleasing scents and beauty. Tory […]

Catina Topash encounters profile

Catina Topash Combines Two Passions to Create Harmony

Photos by L.G. Patterson Whether you are dealing with trauma, stress, anxiety or just a long day, holistic healing in many forms is something all people can benefit from. Catina Topash found her footing in yoga and holistic healing after her mother was diagnosed with cancer. “She and I started a wellness journey together through […]

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Krystal Martin Creates Luxurious, Plant-Based Skin Care Solutions

Photos by L.G. Patterson There are so many products that are used in homes and on your skin that could contain harmful ingredients. Whether it’s your lotion, the holiday-scented candles burning in your home or even the soap you clean your body with, many mainstream products can contain parabens, triclosan, benzophenone, phthalates, formaldehyde, sulfates, petroleum, […]

Chris Foley bread

Local Baker Uses Challenging Method to Make Tasty Creations

Photos by L.G. Patterson While creating a perfect loaf of bread may become complicated, Chris Foley says finding his love for baking was easy. When he was 14 years old, Foley, now the owner of Fiddle & Stone Bread Co., got a job at a bakery in Ashland and knew he had come across something […]

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Columbia Native Builds Profession From Passion

Photos by L.G. Patterson It’s not often that a dream comes from an early injury. But that’s exactly what happened with Kendall Lademann, who broke her femur at age 3 and started dancing as a form of physical therapy. “We weren’t really sure if it would stick, but it did and I just fell in […]

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Stephanie Lanham Turns Passion For Animals Into a Career

Photo by L.G. Patterson  While her love for animals has always been there, Stephanie Lanham did not always plan to work at an animal shelter. Now the operations manager at the Central Missouri Humane Society, Lanham stumbled upon her dream job just after graduating from the University ofMissouri in 2008. “I was looking for a […]

Encounters Angela Pottery

Local Artist Talks About Journey to Pottery and Faith

Photos by L.G. Patterson For Angela Johnson, work is an opportunity to exercise her passion. Passion for pottery, that is. Always interested in the arts, Johnson studied fine arts at the University of Missouri, earning her bachelor’s degree in 1995. By her late 20s, Johnson found herself living a life that was unhealthy and wound […]

Shannon Beck

Handcrafted Haven: Shannon Mulvania-Beck Creates One-Of-A-Kind Jewelry

Photos by L.G Patterson When the pandemic began shutting down businesses and communities around the world, people found different ways to cope and adapt. Shannon Mulvania-Beck was working from home with her child taking part in virtual kindergarten, when the stir-crazy feelings began to set in. “When I feel stir crazy, I do crazy projects,” […]

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Finding a New Passion: Amanda Johanning Uses Jiu-Jitsu to Empower Women

Photos by L.G. Patterson Amanda Johanning never thought martial arts would be part of her journey. But the moment she first stepped foot on the mat, her whole life changed.  “I was hooked just from that very first day,” Johanning says, noting that it was more than just a hobby. “I feel likeI stumbled upon […]

Libby Hampel, Give MASU

Gift-Giving Genius: Libby Hampel’s New Company is Wrapped in Luxury

Photos by L.G. Patterson Libby Hampel is a surface pattern artist, an entrepreneur and someone who is making the planet a greener and more cheerful place. Not coincidentally, she has a lot in common with the eco-friendly gift-wrapping papers she designs, prints and sells through her online store at givemasu.com. “MASU is playful, thoughtful and […]

Trey Dawson of Backyard K9

Backyard K9 Founder Details Path From Incarceration to Small Business Owner

Photos by L.G. Patterson Trey Dawson never planned on working with dogs. The owner and lead trainer for Backyard K9 had grown up with dogs and certainly been around them, but he never really trained them or sought them out. In fact, the path to founding Backyard K9 had quite a few bumps. Dawson is […]

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ACA Business Club Provides Connections, Space

Photos by L.G. Patterson A new option for networking has been growing in the Columbia area. The ACA Business Club, 204 Peach Way suite A, has been quietly expanding its membership throughout the past two years, thanks to the efforts of Lili Vianello and her husband John Shrum, who manage the club.  Vianello’s business, Visionworks Marketing […]

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Making a Green Start

Photos by L.G. Patterson Editor’s note: This article was updated in March 2023 with new information on The Clean Refill. Leah Christian has always been a bit of an environmentalist. It was something she always had an interest in thanks to her parents, so it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that Christian has […]

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Making Their Mark

Photos by L.G. Patterson For most of us, high school and college were times of fun and friends, exploration and excitement, monumental moments and massive mistakes. While the same may be said for Dylan Frazier, Begim Tokhirjonova and Ariel Schachtman, these three young Columbians have also filled their formative years with dedication. Whether it’s spending […]

Children's Grove

Kindness in CoMo

Joyce Smith wholeheartedly believes that a single act of kindness can change a life. “You never know what people are going through,” Smith says. “When I moved to Columbia in 2013, I wanted to make a difference artistically. Through Children’s Grove’s projects and working with unbelievably kind people, I hope that I have.” Children’s Grove, […]

New Re-Lease on Life

Photos by LG Patterson On the western edge of Columbia, off a bumpy gravel road, is a slice of land where Jennifer Romesburg follows her childhood passion for rehabilitating wild animals. That little slice of land belonged to her grandfather, who taught her everything he knew about caring for wildlife, and now Romesburg is following […]

Victory Dance

What started as a tomato rescue project — yes, you read that right — in 2015 is now an heirloom seed and plant business providing Missourians..

Feeding a Community

Wayland and Renee Taylor have been working tirelessly to feed hungry communities in Columbia and Boone County, especially those who have been hit hardest by the pandemic. One major way they have contributed is by