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August: Closer Look

Lotus Hot Yoga

After exploring different business opportunities in the yoga and mindfulness industry, Brandy Bremer and her fiancé, Josh Turner, found their perfect opportunity: a commercial space located on Green Meadows Road. The duo decided to explore this endeavor in December 2020 and opened Lotus Hot Yoga in May.

“I have always had a love for the lotus flower,” Brandy says. The flower’s roots anchor in the mud, but the flower still rises about its murky environment and blossoms open one petal at a time. “My love for the flower, coupled with the events of 2020, made it clear for me that when the reality of opening a studio came to fruition, Lotus had to be the name,” Brandy says.

Lotus Hot Yoga offers several class options, ranging from heated “flow” and “26 and 2” classes to non-heated “yin” and “slow flow” classes. Even with the diverse array of class options for students, the studio always maintains the best parts of practicing yoga. “Yoga is a form of exercise that stimulates your mind as well as your body, providing a unique opportunity for internal growth and self-expression. With that in mind, we set out not just to teach a variety of yoga classes, but to promote values of truthfulness, mindfulness, and wellness,” Brandy says.

550 E. Green Meadows Road, Ste. 107
(573) 442-6940

Shop Blanc

From the owners of Studio Blanc comes Shop Blanc, the retail offshoot of the hair salon. Hayley Quinlan and Victoria Araujo arrived at the idea after noticing a need for a “local destination for all things self-care.”

“We noticed that most people had to go to Target or Ulta — those big box stores — to get their self-care and beauty products,” Hayley says. “We thought downtown Columbia would be the perfect area to sell localized self-care and beauty products.”

The retail store sells products ranging from hair care and styling tools to at-home spa treatments, makeup, and accessories. But that’s not all — Shop Blanc also sells home décor, jewelry, and much, much more. 

“We’re also trying to pull in a sustainability aspect by offering a shampoo and conditioner refill station stocked with best sellers and a rotating favorite,” Hayley says.

In addition to shopping, Salon Blanc offers events like father-daughter hair class, styling tool tutorials, and professional product seminar nights bi-monthly.

Alley A, The District
(573) 673-4900

Big Mama’s Cafe

In a tucked-away strip on I-70 Drive SE, you’ll find Big Mama’s Cafe, owned and operated by husband-and-wife duo BJ and Stephanie Kelz. The restaurant opened its doors in April with a menu of comfort food classics.

For breakfast, Big Mama’s Cafe menu boasts various diner breakfast staples, including eggs, hashbrowns, biscuits and gravy, and waffles. They’re also serving up their spin on breakfast country fried steak, tenderloin with gravy, and country ham. With evening hours Wednesday through Saturday, Big Mama’s Cafe is taking its approach on classics like fried chicken, breaded tenderloin, roast beef, fish sandwich, and breaded shrimp. Homemade cream pie and cobbler are available for dessert. “Everything served is made fresh, in-house, which makes our menu unique,” BJ says. “Everything we have is good. There’s nothing under our roof that isn’t.”

Within the next few years, the pair is looking to open more locations across Columbia. “Currently, we’re looking for a commercial space to open a second location on the other side of town,” BJ says.

3510 Interstate 70 Dr. SE
(573) 554-5984

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