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SBDC for Metro East Celebrates Sweet Cravings Opening
Illinois Ag Connection - 09/14/2020

Sweet Cravings, LLC, which provides a variety of homemade fresh quality ice cream, gourmet popcorn, and other sweets to satisfy sweet cravings, celebrated its grand opening recently at 706 Lincoln Highway in Fairview Heights.

Owner Vickie Fair has worked with the Illinois Small Business Development Center (SBDC) for the Metro East at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and Director Jo Ann DiMaggio May since March 2019 to achieve her old- fashioned, small town, homemade ice cream shop that contains a sophistication of gourmet popcorn, and a plethora of ice cream and Italian ice flavors.

The SBDC provided assistance to Fair with finalizing her business plan, financial avenues and grant information, while offering informative information and help where needed.

"Working with the SBDC and Jo Ann has been a highly positive experience," Fair said. "Jo Ann is extremely helpful and has tremendous knowledge. It doesn't matter what information you need, she can always point you in the right direction."

"Ms. Vickie is hard working, receptive to advice and extremely motivated," DiMaggio May said. "Her passion for making delicious treats, and her focus on customer service is truly refreshing! I look forward to seeing Sweet Cravings grow and becoming a household name."

Additionally, Fair was the 1st place winner of the 2019 Metro East Start-Up Challenge Mock Pitch Competition.

Fair has always had a passion for making sweets, and has been providing popcorn and ice cream to friends and family since 2010. Her career goal has always been to own a business, and now she is taking her small business to the next step with the grand opening of a brick and mortar location.

As a one-stop shop for all of one's sweet desires, Fair takes pride in Sweet Cravings offering gourmet products at small town prices. All products are made with fresh premium, high quality, local ingredients, using local suppliers.

Her goal is to put an emphasis on community involvement. She wants her business to be a place that brings back memories for those who used to walk to the corner store for ice cream. She hopes Sweet Cravings will be a place where community members can make new memories. Perhaps one day, Sweet Cravings will become a brand name.

Sweet Cravings is open noon-8 p.m. daily.

For more information, contact Sweet Cravings at 618-589-9045 or Find it on Facebook and Instagram at @sweetcravings4all.

The Illinois SBDC for the Metro East assists start-up ventures like Sweet Cravings as well as existing businesses headquartered in the nine-county region of Calhoun, Jersey, Madison, Bond, Clinton, St. Clair, Washington, Monroe and Randolph. It is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, and SIUE as a service to Illinois small businesses.

By aiding entrepreneurs and companies in defining their path to success, the SBDC network positively impacts the Metro East by strengthening the business community, creating and retaining new jobs and encouraging new investment. It enhances the region's economic interests by providing one-stop assistance to individuals by means of counseling, training, research and advocacy for new ventures and existing small businesses. When appropriate, the SBDC strives to affiliate its ties to the region to support the goals and objectives of both the SIUE School of Business and the University at large.

To learn about the SBDC, contact the IL SBDC for the Metro East at SIUE at 618-650-2929.

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