When you stay in business for 27 years and have had to move more than one or two times, you definitely dread having to do it again.
Well, I will be celebrating my 27th anniversary of owning and publishing the New Tampa & Wesley Chapel Neighborhood News in a new location (more on exactly where that is below) in February, which will be our sixth office location in all that time.
I doubt that anybody can name all five of our previous office locations, but rather than make a contest out of it, I’ll tell you all of them at the end of this editorial. (if even I can remember them).
This would definitely have been the worst and hardest move, business or residence, of my entire life, if not for the help of several of the advertisers who appear in this publication and one Rotarian I greatly admire.
I don’t consider myself to be a “hoarder,” per se, but those of us in the news business are supposed to save records for at least a certain period of time and I may have taken that to something of an extreme in my nearly three decades of serving the same distribution areas.
In addition, there was a time when we would order many hundreds (500-600 or more) of extra copies of each issue, so that we could, by leaving copies around the community, provide more people with all of the information they couldn’t get anywhere else. But, not only did that never benefit the business financially, it left us with hundreds of extra copies of hundreds of issues of the paper. Do the math. That’s literally “crap-tons” of paper!
We started ordering and saving fewer extra copies a few years ago — and we’ve always thrown out/recycled hundreds of copies each year, but all I knew was that we couldn’t (and shouldn’t) take it all with us to our slightly smaller new office, located less than a half-mile west on S.R. 54 from the office we were leaving, both of which are very close to Saddlebrook Resort.
Shred (360)Your Troubles Away!
So first, I called on Cam Caudle, a U.S. Army veteran and member of the Rotary Club of New Tampa (the club that has been meeting on Friday mornings at Tampa Palms Golf & Country Club for almost as long as I’ve been in business). Cam also is a recent (2015) “Franchisee of the Year” of Shred360, an incredible mobile document destruction company.
So, whether you have years of no-longer-needed financial and other records that you want to safely dispose of, or thousands of copies of publications that you’ll never need (or both), Cam will send his mobile unit to your home or office and will shred all that paper, on-site which will then be recycled. (Note – The Neighborhood News is and always has been printed on 100% recycled paper, no matter which stock we’ve been using.)
In our case, Cam’s guy Ed (photo above) pulled the truck up to our office, and we dropped those thousands of copies into a rolling bin from our second floor stairs. The bin then got loaded into the truck (several times) and I was able to watch, on a small monitor, 27 years of my memories literally being torn to shreds…in a good way.
Got a large or small shredding job for Shred 360? Cam does some shredding events for charity throughout the year, but his prices are very fair and his people are as excellent at their jobs as Cam is funny.
Call Cam at (813) 944-2223 or visit Shred360.com and tell him I sent you (and told you to watch his stand-up comedy debut. Really funny stuff, but not suitable for kids!)
Why Is This Hauler Smiling?
Next, I definitely needed a good junk guy to get rid of…well, everything that wasn’t coming to the new office that wasn’t able to be shredded.
And believe me, that was a lot of stuff. We had several old filing cabinets filled with old advertising agreements, office furniture that wasn’t going to be needed in the new office, a safe, and a whole lot more.
And, it just so happened that our old friend Don Smith — also known as The Happy Hauler — of Smith’s Clean-Up Service (top left photo) had just started back up advertising with us again.
Don’s another hard-working man. I stuffed lots of large, contractor-sized bags of garbage and he carried those bags — and the aforementioned filing cabinets and other garbage — to his waiting trailer and loaded all of it by himself.
Don told me that when he receives items he believes will be useful to local charities — like The Children’s Home Foundation of Tampa or the Sunrise of Pasco Hospice — he’ll set those aside and drive them to the organizations. He told me our filing cabinets, the safe and some of the furniture might be useful to those charities. Best of all, he was done in less than an hour and his rates are extremely reasonable.
So, for everything from single item pick-ups to yard waste, construction debris, small building tear-downs and yes, office (or home) clean-outs, call Don at Smith’s Clean-Up Service at (813) 727-6655. Be sure to tell him that Gary from the Neighborhood News sent you!
Who’s Gonna Clean This Mess?
Another aspect of moving out of one office and into another is that the place you’re leaving has to be broom-clean and even though the place you’re moving to should also be broom clean, I wanted both offices to be as clean as possible.
For our “move-out” clean-up, I chose the company that’s been cleaning our office at the last three or four of our locations and the last at least 10-15 years — D Ultra Cleaning Services.
My friends Eduardo and Deborah Ferreira of D Ultra have always been reliable and although some of their cleaning folks don’t speak much English, Eduardo and Deborah are both bilingual in English and Spanish and anytime I’ve had an issue over the years, they’ve always taken care of it right away. They’re good people who also do grout/ceramic cleaning, pressure washing, carpet and window cleaning and house and light commercial cleaning.
Call D Ultra Cleaning Services at (813) 758-9710 or visit DUltraCleaningService.com.
Because both jobs were so big and I had limited time to get them both done, I decided to let my other friend Celly De Freitas of Clean-it (at right in photo above, which was not taken at our new office, by the way) take on the job of getting our new office sparkling clean before we moved into it.
Celly came with her outstanding crew and in less than two hours, made the new office ready for primetime — or at least for us moving in.
Clean-it has other excellent references, is licensed and insured and also has been cleaning homes and offices in New Tampa and Wesley Chapel for nearly 20 years. Call (813) 505-0431 for a free quote today.
What I Really Need Is A Nerd!
I don’t know about your business, but our office has to have working computers and I still don’t know the difference between a server and a network and had no idea how to make sure we were able to safely move all of our desktop computers to the new office.
So, I called my friend Michael Varnadore, the owner of Nerds To Go Computer Service of New Tampa (photo top right), which has a brick-and-mortar location in the Pebble Creek Collection (behind Kobé Steakhouse; one of our former offices was in the same plaza).
I have had a service agreement with the New Tampa Nerds to Go for over a year, but I never felt as fortunate to have it as I did as we got ready to move. Mike said to me, “Gary, this is why you hired us. We’ve got you covered.” and dispatched his newest Nerd, Derik Jenkins, to our old office a few days before our move.
Derik came to see how things were connected to make sure that we could move the whole shebang safely, and when he came back, he got it disconnected, reconnected and up and running — and we literally never missed a beat.
If this kind of peace of mind is important to you, you should definitely visit Nerds To Go at 19651 Bruce B. Downs Blvd., Ste C-6, or call Mike’s awesome sidekick, Maxine, at (813) 321-1700 or visit NerdsToGo.com. Also, check out the ad in our latest issue for a great Black Friday special on an Acer Aspire TC-865 Desktop PC and other deals.
So, there you have it. Our new office is in the Westbrook Professional Park at 28949 S.R. 54, Wesley Chapel 33543. As soon as we get everything put away, we’ll host an Open House/party to show off our new digs.
In the meantime, listed below are all five of our previous offices:
1. Gerry Mann Financial Building (11201 N. 56th St., Temple Terrace)
2. Palm Plaza (12108 N. 56th St., Tampa/Temple Terrace)
3. Pebble Creek Collection (19651 BBD Blvd., New Tampa)
4. Shoppes at Amberly (15345 Amberly Dr., Tampa Palms)
5. Brookside Prof. Park (29157 Chapel Park Dr., Suite B, Wesley Chapel)
Thanks again to all of our advertisers and friends who helped get us moved in quickly, cleanly and safely.