Friday, June 20, 2008

Panera Bread teams up to help Care and Share Food Bank

Panera Bread is rolling out a line of new breakfast sandwiches, and, in the process, hopes to help fill up the shelves at the Care and Share Food Bank of Southern Colorado. Starting Friday, June 20, Panera Bread will launch a line of grilled breakfast sandwiches in Colorado Springs and around the state. Through June 29, Panera customers who donate a non-perishable breakfast item to Care and Share will receive a free breakfast sandwich. Panera has three varieties of its new breakfast sandwiches: egg and cheese; bacon, egg and cheese; and sausage, egg and cheese. Breads of the World, a Panera franchisee, owns and operates 22 Panera Bread locations in Colorado, including four in Colorado Springs. More information:

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Watch out for phone scam using Wal-Mart's name

The Better Business Bureau of Southern Colorado is warning local residents not to fall for a new phone scam that uses the Wal-Mart name. According to the BBB, someone who identifies himself as "Victor Vasquez" and claiming to represent “Wal-Mart Computer Systems” has called area consumers to tell them they've won a second prize of $9.8 million in a Wal-Mart sweepstakes. To claim their winnings, consumers are told to pay an insurance fee of $1,600 via Western Union, which "Victor" says would pay the cost of shipping the prize via United Parcel Serve and having it delivered by a U.S. Marshal. In one case, the insistent "Victor" suggested a consumer obtain a loan or borrow money to send him the money. The BBB says “Victor” actually is a con artist calling from Jamaica and the Wal-Mart name is being used fraudulently to lend credibility to the scheme. Wal-Mart is not running a sweepstakes or using the name Wal-Mart Computer Systems, according to the BBB. To protect themselves, consumers should remember that legitimate lotteries and sweepstakes don't charge insurance or processing fees to claim prizes. Also, don't fall for the use of familiar names, such as Wal-Mart. If in doubt, consumers should ask for contact information and verify it with a reputable source. And, never send money to strangers using a money transfer service. More information: 636-1155 or

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Local tanning spot closes, another offers customer help

Electric Beach Tanning Salon has closed up shop, according to a sign posted on the 57443 N. Academy Blvd. site.

“Due to a legal disagreement with our landlord we are forced to move our salon to a new location,” reads the sign. “...We have all your contact information and will be mailing you our new location info.” Meanwhile, Electric Beach's phone number has been disconnected and neighboring businesses said confused tanning customers have stopped by looking for answers about the salon's disappearance.

Southwestern Commercial Properties, which owns the property, declined to comment due to company policy.

Sun Spot Atlantis, another local tanning salon, has offered to help Electric Beach's clients. Sun Spot will honor the membership of any customer who brings in current contract from Electric Beach Tanning Salon, said owner Ric Rooney. At 6,000 square feet, Sun Spot Atlantis is the largest tanning salon in the state, Rooney said, and offers the same services as Electric Beach tanning.

Sun Spot Atlantis is located at 4310 Austin Bluffs Parkway, 531-6000.

Regional business partnership grows

A regional business alliance that hopes to foster better communication and speak with a common voice on business issues has added another member.
The Greater Woodland Park Chamber of Commerce agreed earlier this month to become the latest group to join the Pikes Peak Regional Business Partnership, which was formed a year ago, said Dave Csintyan, chief executive officer of the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce.
Other members include the Springs Chamber, the Hispanic and black chambers, Experience Colorado Springs at Pikes Peak, the Tri-Lakes Chamber, the Fountain Valley Chamber, the Southern Colorado Women's Chamber and the Eastern Plains Chamber.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Record year for Colorado tourism

Colorado had its best season ever for tourism, both in terms of the number of visitors (28 million) and the amount of money they spent ($9.8 billion), according to the annual Longwoods International Colorado Travel Year 2007 Report released today by the Colorado Tourism Office.

In addition to the raw numbers, Colorado's share of national tourism also grew, from 2.35 percent in 2006 to 2.5 percent in 2007.

Tourism officials say the gains can be attributed to the state legislature boosting the state's marketing budget from $5.5 million to $19 million last year, although the total number of visits to the state has been on an upward trajectory for several years.

Colorado Springs was the state's second-most popular tourist attraction, behind Denver, but ahead of Estes Park and Boulder. The Springs drew 11 percent of out-of-state visitors.

Porchlight launch delayed

Porchlight Communications' plan to launch video service in some parts of Colorado Springs has been delayed to July 1. The company had planned to begin service June 16.