Business Spotlight: Cold Stone Creamery

Creekside’s Cold Stone Creamery thrives this time of year, welcoming families eager to savor the last of summer. Located in the heart of Gahanna’s Creekside District (101 Mill St. Suite 108), Cold Stone serves up premium ice cream in dozens of delicious flavors.

Led by independent owners and operators Maja and Dimitar Jovanski, the staff size at Cold Stone Creamery ranges from 12 in the winter months to 18, during the warm-weather months. The staff increases mainly come through employee referrals, driven largely by employee satisfaction.

“Showing visible happiness is a key part of our workforce culture. You can’t force emotions, but you can create an environment where employees are more likely to smile and show customers and prospective employees what it’s like to work here,” shared owner Dimitar Jovanski.

Because many workers at Cold Stone Creamery are high school students, the owners have learned how to help them balance scheduling demands from extracurricular activities and sports. This full-on support of employees as workers, students, and even sports players demonstrates a unique leadership aptitude critical to the growth of young adults.

“I love working for the owners, Maya and Dimitar. They really work with me around my swim team schedule at Gahanna Lincoln High School. I started working here in February 2021, and I recently started working here again after taking time off to serve the community as a lifeguard during the summer months. I’m very comfortable around the owners, and I can carry on a great conversation with them. They make me feel good about asking questions, too. I feel like they want my input on store operations, and it’s nice feel to feel valued in that way,” shared employee Sophie R.

Jovanski reiterated that one big factor toward employee retention is to lead by example. For him, this means demonstrating the humility to perform the lowest-level tasks, including washing dishes and sweeping floors.

“For me, I was almost 16 and needed a job. My mom really wanted me to get a job that I could add as a solid career reference that would provide me with marketable skills, including multi-tasking, customer service, and working well under pressure. Dog-watching and babysitting just weren’t going to provide all those opportunities. I knew some workers at Cold Stone Creamery, and I was hired the same day that I applied. Then, I encouraged my cousin Sophia and friend Haley to apply. Referring new hires is great, because it then means that I get to work with my best friends,” exclaimed crew member Margaret M.

Jovanski and his crew are eager to scoop up new employees to help serve happiness and ice cream in their Creekside location. To join them, stop in the store today or apply online.

Gahanna PD September Community Report

Gahanna Division of Police has been busy! Read the Division’s most recent Community Report o learn more about what’s happening in Gahanna.

Download the report HERE.


City Honored for Excellence in Finance Reporting

The City of Gahanna has received both the Ohio Auditor of State Award, with Distinction, and for the 8th consecutive year, the Distinguished Budget Presentation Award from the Government Finance Officers Association.
“These awards speak to the high degree of accountability and transparency that we strive to achieve for our residents. This recognition is also reflective of the high-quality staff we have here at the city, under the direction of our finance director, Joann Bury. The day-to-day operations of a municipal budget of a city our size is never easy, but over the last 18 months, additional variables have been added into the equation.”

Lola and Giuseppe’s: 14 Years of Tradition in Gahanna

For 14 years, people of all ages have savored the authentic Italian dishes prepared at Gahanna’s Lola and Giuseppe’s Trattoria (100 Granville Street). Steve Fancelli and his family bought the restaurant nearly 5 years ago from the original owners: Lola and Joe Iacabone, when the couple retired.  

The intimate trattoria has become both a local and regional favorite to diners. It seats 38 people indoors and accommodates 12 more outside. In such a quaint space, the team finds working together and always looking for ways to assist one another is key. 

“We all have a mutual agreement at every position to help one another out. Our team is great because it’s all about love – love for each other, love for our customers, and love for our work,” shared owner Fancelli. 

Each staff member is also responsible for helping the restaurant to achieve its sales goals. These outcomes are a numerical reflection of a strong workplace culture reinforced by dedicated staff. 

“Working in the food service industry is close to my heart,” shared staff member Autumn E. “In this small atmosphere, we really get to know one another. This is my fourth restaurant job, and I definitely like Lola and Giuseppe’s Trattoria the best even though I’ve only worked here for six months.” 

“Our customers love us back. It’s the greatest feeling. It’s clear that everyone is taking responsibility to make sure we succeed. This high level of community ownership over a local business is quite endearing, and I hope it lasts for years to come,” said Fancelli.  

Lola and Giuseppe’s is participating in the 24th Annual Taste of Gahanna that runs through November 11, 2021.  A $130 value of food vouchers can be purchased from the Gahanna Area Chamber of Commerce for $75 at  

To learn more, visit:

Business Spotlight: Heart State Brewing Co.

This Business Spotlight is part of a series of posts highlighting Small Business Week (Sept. 12-18, 2021) in Gahanna!


Gahanna’s Cross Pointe Road is home to several establishments – Simple Times Mixers, Noble Cut Distillery, and Heart State Brewing Co., among others. When it comes to hiring, the newly opened Heart State Brewing Co. (750 Cross Point Rd. Suite J) has its workforce pipeline set in motion.  

Owners Max Unverferth, Patrick Sullivan, and Brad Ginger oversee the brewery and taproom, which opened this summer. This is the third and latest brewery for the trio, who also run Nowhere in Particular (Dayton, Ohio) and Somewhere in Particular (Upper Arlington, Ohio).  

“Gahanna feels like a small, tight-knit community. It feels like a home where everyone is supporting you,” shared owner Max Unverferth. 

Unverferth has spent 15 years working in the brewing industry. When it comes to growing his Gahanna staff of five, Unverferth relies on a steady stream of applicants from within the brewing industry. Unverferth, a member of the Ohio Craft Brewers Association, explained how industry networking has created meaningful friendships that result in both business partnerships and remarkable crews.  

“We’re fun, hard-working, and trustworthy business leaders. Everyone wants to be our friends. This makes it easy to line-up potential staff as job openings arise and our Gahanna brewery grows,” said Unverferth. 

Jason Brockmeyer, an intern at Heart State Brewing Co., is one example of hiring from within the brewing community. Jason is a Columbus-area firefighter who recently graduated from the University of Central Florida, where he studied brewing. As Jason transitions from firefighting to brewing, he sees a strong connection between the two career fields.  

“Through Heart State Brewing Co., I can organize community fundraising events to support local firefighters. There are endless opportunities to give back to the community through the brewing industry,” shared Brockmeyer. 

Lucas M., Heart State Brewing Co.’s Taproom Manager, was recruited from California by the three owners.  

“We are a bunch of weirdos, but we care about each other, and we care about people. For me personally, I moved back to Ohio from California to accept the position as taproom manager. What could be cooler than pushing a cool product with the people you love and trust?” exclaimed Lucas M.  

Brewing Assistant and Owner Brad Ginger described how his workplace is a career dream. 

“I love this job because I love working with my hands, and I love working with my best friends. I especially love to solve problems, and every day I am presented with a challenge that I get to overcome. The best part is that you can visibly watch people enjoy a product that you put so much time and effort into making. It doesn’t get more fulling than that,” said Ginger. 

“I want our brewery to be known as ‘Ohio’s Local Brewery’,” shared owner Patrick Sullivan. Sullivan is actively connecting with local artists through the Gahanna Area Arts Council to add lively murals inside the spacious taproom that hosts board games, ping pong, and basketball.  

Stay tuned for upcoming job openings at Heart State Brewing Co. by visiting the taproom or checking the website at 


Business Spotlight: Gahanna Hardware

This Business Spotlight is the third in a series of posts highlighting Small Business Week (Sept. 12-18, 2021) in Gahanna!


For over six decades, Gahanna Hardware (73 N. High St.) has reliably served the greater Gahanna area, offering custom guidance in-step with continual advances in building trades. Owner Twyla Edgell is proud to operate the business, steps away from the Creekside plaza.   

“To retain employees, I’ve found it’s best to treat them the way you want to be treated. I love to surprise them with breakfast or lunch, which means a lot to the crew,” shared Edgell. 

With a staff of 11, a typical Gahanna Hardware employee is often retired and well-versed in the building trades. However, all employees receive hands-on training to perform paint mixing, key cutting, plexiglass cutting, and pipe cutting, among other services.  

“I’ve found success hiring older, retired employees that enjoy helping others. Most employees work about 20 hours a week, so they can treat this job almost like a fun hobby,” explained Edgell. 

Aside from showering her employees with gift cards on holidays and birthdays, Edgell also takes time to gift each worker with a Christmas ham. Most importantly, Gahanna Hardware’s operating hours help her crew sustain a predictable work-life balance, as the store closes at 6 pm on weekdays and is also closed on all holidays.  

“I’ve been coming to Gahanna Hardware my entire life. It feels really satisfying to help others with a variety of different projects. Customers leave here really happy, which makes me feel great as a customer service employee. Plus, I get to see a lot of the people I grew up with. Gahanna Hardware is a just a really rewarding and relaxing place to work,” shared Jeff I., who has worked at Gahanna Hardware for the past three years.   

Edgell claims her success with employee retention is also based on her ability to quickly identify the strengths and weaknesses of her crew, enabling her to create a tailored training plan to best support each worker.  

“Twyla, the owner, makes sure we feel taken care of, and she even makes us feel like her kids. I’ve lived in Gahanna my entire life, and I really do enjoy working in the heart of my community,” exclaimed manager Brad M., who has worked at Gahanna Hardware for two years.  

Gahanna Hardware is currently hiring two crew members. To apply, please stop in the store and ask for an application.  



Business Spotlight: Café Creekside

This Business Spotlight is part of a series of posts highlighting Small Business Week (Sept. 12-18, 2021) in Gahanna!


Since 2006, Café Creekside (53 Granville St.) has arisen as a premier family-run, cornerstone business at the intersection of Mill and Granville streets in Gahanna. As a gateway business into the infamous Creekside district, chef and owner Chris Katanyuta takes seriously the impact of an old-fashioned diner upon a steadily growing and increasingly modernizing community.  

“As the owner of Café Creekside, my job is to get to know the families of our customers and employees.  Our local brand and strong reputation at the Gahanna Lincoln High School has resulted in Café Creekside being regarded as one of the top workplaces for young adults. This is all a testament to our workplace culture and old-fashioned values,” shared Chris.  

The 11-member crew is also led by Chris’ daughter, Anna Katanyuta.  The mother-daughter team shared that while their workforce pipeline is reinforced through employee referrals from the Gahanna Lincoln High School, employee retention is predicated upon treating young employees like adults. 

“Giving young employees ownership and responsibility over their tasks really helps them build character and gives them the skills to provide service in a sincere way for each customer,” explained Chris. 

The family-like workplace culture at Café Creekside is a proven technique that has resulted in high levels of workforce retention. For instance, Chris described how she even works with the family members of her employees to provide additional accountability and professional development. This comprehensive, yet aggressive, approach has been embraced by employees and their families.  

“I get along with the management and owner really well,” shared Brandon A. “They treat me the way they expect me to treat others. They treat me like an adult. I really like that, and they are always looking out for everybody. They cook us meals, and it really shows how much they care about us.”

“I had been coming here for years with my family before I started working here. Café Creekside commemorates loyal customers who have passed away by affixing a special plaque on a dining chair. My dad passed away, and there is a memorial table for him along with a chair with a special plaque. I’m so grateful to the staff here. It’s really all love and smiles. And my two sisters and future brother-in-law also all work here, so it truly is a family,” said Victoria N.  

Café Creekside is currently hiring an experienced breakfast flat-top grill cook. Interested? Apply through the Café Creekside’s Facebook page or stop in and ask for an application.  


Business Spotlight: Stadium

This Business Spotlight is the first in a series of posts highlighting Small Business Week (Sept. 12-18, 2021) in Gahanna!


Stadium, (101 Mill St. Suite B105) is one of Creekside Gahanna’s most vibrant small businesses.

Stadium’s owner-operator Phil Richardson uses a variety of techniques to retain 27 employees and recruit talent for its seven open positions. Since it opened in June 2020, Stadium has retained nearly half its original staff despite the turbulence across almost all industries.

Richardson, an industry veteran with more than 20 years of experience, was previously a general manager at The Walrus and Pecan Pennies, both located in downtown Columbus. Phil follows in his grandfather’s footsteps – who operated George’s BBQ restaurants in Oklahoma. Today, Phil carries on secret family recipes through Stadium’s menu offerings. 

Despite a nationwide workforce shortage in the food and beverage industry, Phil has found success by offering an employee referral bonus coupled with a 90-day new employee retention bonus. To retain employees, Richardson proactively creates a sense of vulnerability among his crew, enabling them to comfortably approach management with their concerns and needs.  

“I ask all my employees to be especially understanding as we navigate the unpredictable pandemic. This helps forge a better team environment, especially as we consider the impact of being understaffed.” 

Richardson not only provides hands-on training, but he also takes his crew on field trips to better understand the broader supply chain process and unique production systems of local brewers.   

“Understanding the food and beverage industry is key in helping employees appreciate the craft.  Employees become more empowered to participate in company decisions. I take seriously customer service training by instilling proactive, rapid engagement with all customers,” Richardson explained.   

To cement Stadium’s place at Creekside, Richardson’s team develops strong relationships with local customers, making Stadium incredibly welcoming. He described how local workers often come by after work. Conversely, Richardson is looking to grow Stadium’s regional brand by driving foot traffic from across the entire Columbus metropolitan area into Gahanna’s bustling Creekside District.

Taylor Station Road Closure Begins Sept. 8

Adam’s Pointe LLC is working with the City of Gahanna to make improvements to Taylor Station Road (beginning Sept. 8 ) by widening and installing a center left turn lane. This will require the road to be closed to all through traffic for approximately 7 weeks, but access to local traffic will be maintained.  Work will be completed in 2 stages. The first stage will close the north half of the area to be widened, allowing access from the south. The second stage will close the southern half, allowing access from the north. Improvements will include a new concrete approach to businesses on the east side of Taylor Station Road.  Traffic patterns are subject to change.