October 2015 Issue

  • Established to Serve

    As long ago as the kingdoms of Egypt, elaborate funeral practices were important to life on the continent of Africa. Their memories of burial traditions traveled with those unfortunate souls who were brought to the Americas as slaves. During their centuries of forced servitude, burials in the slave community were a rare opportunity to congregate, share emotions, dignify and celebrate the life that had passed to the next world — “gone home.”

    During the Civil War, black Union soldiers were pressed into duty assisting surgeons, and embalmed dead soldiers prior to shipping their bodies back to their hometowns from the South. Following Emancipation, their skills became the basis of a business economy, which consolidated during the years of Jim Crow. Funeral directors possessed a circumspect dignity, wealth and high status in the developing free African American communities.

    During the Civil Rights era, their status often placed them in forefront of negotiations with white leaders (and in a unique position to pass important secrets back and forth between blacks and whites). Funeral parlors are considered one of four major business types in African American communities that have survived desegregation, the others being churches, hair salons/ barbershops, nightclubs.

    Lawrence H. Hamlar and Harry C. Curtis, Jr. established Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home in Roanoke on February 3, 1952. Harry’s wife, Marilyn, was formally included in the business incorporation several years later. Michael Hamlar, Lawrence’s nephew, was also an owner of the business. 

    Over the past sixty years this family business has been located prominently on the corner of 10th Street at Moorman Road. It has gone through several expansions. The first happened in 1959 after a fire almost totally destroyed the building. The second expansion built a chapel with seating capacity for 300 mourners, three spacious family rooms and an administrative suite. The business grew steadily in the 1960s, and in 1972 more building expansion was needed. State Sen. (eventually to become Virginia’s first African-American Governor) L. Douglas Wilder, a friend of both families, gave the keynote address at the dedication ceremony.

    “Duke” Curtis attributes much of the business’s success “to faithful employees like funeral service licensee Fred Galloway and funeral attendant Richard Broady, lifelong employees still working in their 80s.” Other dedicated staff include Patricia Curtis, Patrick Curtis, Heather Willis, Byron Hamlar, George Stores, Frank Lynch and Stephen Hughes, and others who consistently ensure the Hamlar-Curtis standard of quality and professional service.

    “It’s really very flattering,” said Duke Curtis, “when we get a call, say, from Philadelphia, that a person wants to have their loved one brought home to Roanoke and Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home is recognized for its good reputation up there.”

    In years past, the most public face of the business, Lawrence H. Hamlar, helped to defuse tension in Roanoke following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. His leadership created the Center for Higher Education in Roanoke. He brought funding and leadership to Center in the Square, Blue Ridge PBS, and many other organizations. Both he and Marilyn Curtis served at different times on the Roanoke City Public Schools’ board.

    The individuals of that founding generation now have all passed away: Marilyn Curtis in 2000, Michael Lee Hamlar and Lawrence Hamlar in 2003, and Harry C. Curtis, Jr. in 2012. The legacies of the founders live on through their second and third generation offspring, H. Clarke “Duke” Curtis and Michael Lawrence Hamlar, who are now the owners of Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home. Duke Curtis says, “I was happy to learn that Mike was joining the business. I’ve watched him grow up; he was a great kid and has grown into a great young man. He’s a go-getter with great energy.”

    Young Michael Lawrence Hamlar, rising star of the third generation of the business, earned a football scholarship to Wake Forest University, where he played in the Seattle Bowl championship for the Demon Deacons. Soon after graduation, at age 22, he inherited his stake in the funeral home upon the death of his father Michael, who had suffered for years with multiple sclerosis, and just two and a half weeks later, the death of his great-uncle Lawrence Hamlar. He returned to Roanoke, leaving a promising football career, to help run the family business as a third generation co-owner of Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home.

    To enrich his knowledge of the funeral business, he obtained an associate degree from Mortuary School at John Tyler Community College while working in Roanoke. He holds an MBA from Liberty University, and is currently pursuing a doctorate in business administration.

    In 2009, Hamlar started a business brokerage firm, Hamlar Enterprises, which has handled multimillion-dollar regional mergers, business acquisitions and more. In 2012, Hamlar and his wife, Katina, established Hamlar Properties real estate firm. Hamlar is also an adjunct faculty member at American National University’s Roanoke Campus. His family includes young children Simone, Michal and Micah. He is a member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity and the Kiwanis Club of Roanoke.

    Both Duke Curtis and Mike Hamlar were greatly influenced by their paternal role models — fathers and uncles — in their roles as business professionals, community leaders and entrepreneurs.

    Recognized by The Blue Ridge Business Journal as one of the “Top 20 leaders under 40,” Mike Hamlar is energetically campaigning for a State Senate seat in the 19th District, which encompasses part of Roanoke County, all of Floyd County, all of Salem, part of Montgomery County, all of Wythe and Carroll Counties, and part of Bedford. If he is elected, he has said his priorities will be education, Medicaid expansion (which he hopes is accomplished before he makes it to the Senate), and economic development. Gov. Terry McAuliffe recently appointed him to the Secure Commonwealth Panel.

    Hamlar points out that a program such as Marketplace Virginia would create 30,000 jobs while providing necessary preventive healthcare. Though not yet the official Democratic nominee, he is eager to gain that distinction so that he can focus on defeating incumbent Republican State Sen. Ralph Smith.

    Duke Curtis said about Hamlar’s candidacy, “You don’t find too many young African- American men who will accept the challenge of politics, of running for this seat like Mike has. I really admire him for that.”

    H. Clarke “Duke” Curtis, current president of Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home, admits he is looking forward to eventually retiring and fulfilling all that is on his “bucket list.” Born in 1956, he was educated in Hamlar-Curtis Funeral Home has built a respected reputation that extends into a third generation of leadership. toSERVE 10 OCTOBER 2015 Roanoke and attended John Tyler Community College in Richmond, where he earned an Associate of Applied Science degree in Mortuary Science in 1978.

    Certified by The Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards of the United States, Inc., and by the Virginia Board of Funeral Directors and Embalmers, Curtis has a long history of professional affiliations and awards. He has served as chairman of the board of Virginia Morticians Association, is past president of Virginia Morticians Association and Western District Funeral Directors Association, and is currently a member of numerous national and state professional boards.

    Curtis has served on Virginia Tech’s School of Medicine and Research Community and Diversity Advisory Board, and Greater Roanoke Valley Development Foundation, SunTrust advisory board, Center in the Square board, board of Roanoke Regional Chamber of Commerce, and the Roanoke City Public School Education Foundation. He is a member of the Shenandoah Club.

    He has in the past been chairman of New Horizons Healthcare Center (formerly Kuumba Community Healthcare Center), United Way of Roanoke Valley Board of Directors, Minority Leadership Development Programs Chairman of United Way, University of Virginia Advisory Counsel for Continuing Education, Long Range Planning Committee of the Roanoke City Public Schools, Big Brothers, Board of Directors of the Hunton YMCA, Community Advisor to Wasena Elementary School “Just Say No” to Drugs Camp, Council of Community Service Board of Directors, Central YMCA, Apple Ridge Farm, Better Business Bureau and New Century Venture Council (a business incubator).

    Curtis is a deacon and director of the Anchor of Hope Community Center at High Street Baptist Church, a Mason, and a Shriner. His past honors include Outstanding Young Man of America, Father of the Year of High Street Baptist Church, Business Man of the Year/YMCA Family Center Branch, Western District Mortician of the Year, Outstanding Community Service/Alpha Kappa Alpha, and Omega Psi Phi Citizen of the Year Award.

    He is married to the former Patricia Reynolds, with whom he has two children: Tiffany, a registered nurse in Dallas, Texas, and Patrick, who now works with him in Roanoke. He helped raise his nephew Donte’, who also works in Dallas. Curtis enjoys working out, reading, music, traveling, and spending time with his family.

    Curtis strongly believes in encouraging young people. “Dare To Be Different” and “Pay it Forward” are two quotes frequently used by Curtis with community and family.



  • Success Seasoned by Hard Work and Sacrifice

    Evelyn Liu, owner of Taste of Asia in Roanoke, knows business. When most kids were playing sports or getting into trouble, she was helping her father with his bookkeeping. Evelyn is number nine out of ten children and had her first taste of business ownership when she opened a little shop in high school selling books and CDs.

    Her parents are Chinese but Evelyn considers herself to be Indonesian because she was born and raised in Indonesia. Like people in so many other parts of the world, she said she experienced a certain level of discrimination. She felt the people in Indonesia were not very social, and this is part of the reason that she made the move to Los Angeles, California, in 2006.

    No family, no friends and in a foreign country, she started work as a server in a restaurant two days after her arrival. Evelyn then began perfecting her English-speaking skills with her patrons’ assistance. As a somewhat reclusive individual, she found that for the most part Americans are friendly, social and want to talk. Soon the restaurant became a social place for her in addition to her job. While working and living in L.A., she made connections with others in the Asian community. She began traveling to different states, and before you know it she had twenty-two under her belt. In 2008 one of her acquaintances mentioned a job opening in Roanoke, Virginia, and she decided to take it. Luckily, of all the places she traveled, she liked Roanoke the best.

    The restaurant business was just her speed. She had been learning to cook from her father since she was six years old and as a bonus, it gave her a chance to be social. Liu is also no stranger to great flavors and fresh ingredients. Her mother used to play a game with her where she had to guess ingredients in food just by taste at a very young Photography by George Warner Evelyn Liu Photography by Phillip Barrett 14 OCTOBER 2015 age. She tells me that her mother “is a very smart woman because by taste of food is the best way to cook and tell where it’s from.”

    She was offered the opportunity to purchase Chaba Thai in Roanoke in 2013. There were plenty of naysayers telling her that owning a restaurant is hard. “Business is business,” she says, and went on to say that while in Indonesia she owned a hardware store, electronics store and cell phone store all at the same time.

    Evelyn believes that in order to be a successful business owner you need to ask yourself, “Are you a hard worker, do you have the time needed … Are you prepared to be the last to get a paycheck?” She decided to take the offer for the restaurant. Chaba Thai was then closed, and the building reopened in November 2014 as Taste of Asia. She turned it into her version of a modern establishment with a “big city atmosphere” and an “energizing vibe so that people feel fifteen years younger,” she tells me while laughing.

    The décor is very colorful with sleek lines and you immediately see the sushi chefs for the Japanese portion of the cuisine upon entry. The restaurant offers Thai and Chinese cuisine as well; each has its own special chef so that one type of food would not be better than the other, all equal. Her decision to offer all three types of food is to give people what they like without having to go to multiple locations. She shops local when possible and is very focused on the healthiness of her food. She eats at the restaurant every day and a lot of her time is spent there as well; it’s like her baby.

    Evelyn feels that you really can’t compare one restaurant or business to another; each is its own entity, like individuals. She cares about her customers and “everything isn’t all about money,” she says. If you want to be a business owner, she says, “be prepared to sacrifice, never give up, and keep dreaming.” Evelyn keeps up with the reviews of her restaurant on Yelp, and is also active on social media through the restaurant’s Facebook page. You can try the cuisine from A Taste of Asia by stopping by 3603 Franklin Road, SW in Roanoke for lunch or dinner. If you choose take out instead of dine in, you can call (540) 342-1001.

  • Understanding Your Health

    Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, more commonly referred to as COPD, is one of the most common lung diseases that makes breathing difficult. According to the COPD Foundation, it affects an estimated 24 million people in the U.S., and more than half of them have symptoms and do not know it.

    There are two main forms of COPD: chronic bronchitis, which involves a long-term cough with mucus, and emphysema, which involves damage to the lungs over time. Many people with COPD have a combination of both conditions.

    The American Lung Association states that more than 80 percent of all COPD cases are caused by cigarette smoking. The poisons in cigarette smoke can weaken the lungs’ defense against infections, narrow air passages, cause swelling in air tubes and destroy air sacs.

    Other common factors for developing COPD include exposure to irritating gases, fumes and dusts in the workplace; exposure to heavy amounts of secondhand smoke and pollution; and a history of COPD in one’s family. Additionally, most diagnosed with COPD are over 40 years of age. 

    Because the symptoms develop slowly, some people may not know that they have COPD. Common symptoms of COPD include fatigue, shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness, excess mucus in the lungs and a chronic cough.

    COPD is a progressive disease without a cure. However, there are many treatment options available to relieve symptoms and manage the condition. 

    Treatments can reduce or control symptoms, reduce the risk for infections and complications, and improve a patient’s quality of life. Treatment options may include pulmonary rehabilitation, oxygen therapy, medications, inhalers and lifestyle changes. For some, surgery may be necessary.

    Those with COPD should focus on controlling symptoms through proper hand washing, keeping vaccinations up to date, following physician orders and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

    The best way to prevent COPD is to not smoke. And if you do smoke, quit immediately. Also, wearing respiratory protective equipment if you are exposed to lung irritants and exercising regularly to build lung strength both help reduce the risk of COPD.

    COPD symptoms do not typically appear until there is already considerable lung damage, so early prevention and de- tection is key. If you believe you are at risk for COPD, talk to your doctor about screenings for early detection. For more information, visit CarilionClinic.org.


  • IndiVisible puts lens on bi-cultural pride

    Who are the African-Native Americans? What is this untold American story, and why do we need to hear it? These are the questions I brought to the “IndiVisible” exhibit, showcased at the Harrison Museum of African American Culture in downtown Roanoke. It is through the thoughtful and concerted efforts of François Claytor, art curator at the Harrison Museum, that we have the good fortune of accessing these materials.

    Created as a collaboration between the National Museum of the American Indian, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Services, the exhibit is on its 24th stop around the nation. The show opened in Roanoke in July and will be open through the first week of January 2016. The complete show is packaged in a neat collection of 20 4-by-7-foot printed screens that read like a textbook, but not one that you have read in history class. The exhibit is also accompanied by a video that consists of interviews and personal narratives reflecting on the contemporary issue of Native and African American bi-cultural identity

    In a broad historical sweep from Columbus to the present day, the exhibit showcases the personal histories and the unique obstacles faced by those born at the intersection of Native and African American experiences. Through voluntary and involuntary alliances, sometimes mutual enslavement, and military conflict, Native peoples and African Americans have come together on American soil. This is the telling of that coming together. It is also the telling of the challenges faced by the progeny of these cultural and physical unions. 

    A mutual bi-cultural proclamation of pride is clearly the goal of the exhibit. This idea is planted like a visual seed in the image of the Comanche family from the 1900s and the Foxx family from 2008. In the pictures, both families, in some form, proudly wear traditional Native American tribal dress. The final counterpoint to those images of Native tribes embracing the expansion of their family identities is rendered through the first person narratives voiced in the video. What is the picture of an African American incorporating their Native American identity? How is that realized and recognized?

    Given the, at times, bloody history of disempowered minorities in America, identification is sometimes necessarily strategic. There is a recurrent theme of non-admission in both communities as one woman relates, “it was easier to not mention her Native American Identity” or “people only saw us as Black.” How one is racially “seen” has too often been the hierarchical standard for privilege by the racial majority in American society. Whether or not that standard has evolved, it is clear today that we are being given the opportunity to look beyond the visible. We are being asked to look into history and the rich experience of an American struggle. We may begin to understand that as a nation of indigenous peoples and immigrants alike, being truly American is not about origin, but rather about empowered inclusion.

    It is difficult not to hear the words of the Pledge of Allegiance wrapping themselves around the title of this exhibit. “One nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” Truly without irony this exhibit simultaneously declares and petitions the truth of that pledge. The pledge drafted in 1892 by Francis Bellamy for schoolchildren, in the same year that Ellis Island opened, represents what I believe to be the true spirit of Americans.

    This belief in “indivisible equality,” for me as an Asian American immigrant, represents the best of America’s ideology even as we continue to struggle for its truth in our society. By understanding that it is our unified ideology and humanitarian values that define us nationally as Americans, we are able to move beyond race. It is time to fully embrace, and wonder at the rich diversity of origins, place, culture, and ethnicity in “we the people.” What becomes visible through this exhibit is not just the declaration of the African-Native American experience, it is also the journey that continues today for all of us who call ourselves Americans.

    To read more:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Ellis_Island

    https://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Pledge_of_Allegiance

    Amy d. Herzel is a Korean American adoptee, a mother of two and a local professional visual artist, designer, and art educator. You may find out more about her and her work on her website: pseudopompous.com

  • Unlocking Keys to Success

    Victor McCoy Sr. is a busy man on a mis- sion, and his enthusiasm for his life’s work is inspiring. He has firsthand experience in how small businesses work, and for the past 30 years has specialized in market- ing. He loves to share, and to teach what he learned along the way.

    McCoy is the owner of 3V Design Media, a family-owned company that helps small businesses design their marketing plans and use the crucial, but somewhat overwhelming variety of print, digital and Internet platforms for outreach. 3V Design Media can provide customers with everything from website analytics to websites to indoor and outdoor signage.

    Cynthia, his wife of 25 years, is the company’s designer; Victor is the management consultant and integrated marketing director. The three “V’s,” he explained, represent their children’s names: sons Victor, Jr. and Vondrae, and daughter Victoria. “My wife and I did that to remind ourselves of the reasons why we work. We wanted to build a viable, scalable and profitable business for our family that would use its resources to also help others. That’s not normal marketing practice when naming a business, but it still drives us today.”

    New small business owners sometimes have no marketing plan, McCoy explained. “I can tell you the simplest explanation of a marketing plan: find the audience who wants to buy your stuff!” and then he chuckles. “Selling starts with product, customer and location. If you own a fruit stand, you need to locate it where your customers can find you, can see that fruit, and know it will be there each time they need fruit.” Today, he ex- plains, “Technology can solve a lot of problems, by making market research accessible. For instance, you have to know who your audience is, and where they are. I can find you right now, by latitude and lon- gitude,” McCoy said, demonstrating the breadth of his research toolbox.

    “Selling today means getting your business on the web, choosing a platform that makes the most sense for your product and for your audience. Pinterest? Facebook? A website? All channels then need to be oriented to bring customers to your location.” McCoy’s customers, typically 22- to 55-year-olds, may also need guidance in how to communicate with their customers. “A 22-year-old may not know how to speak the language of a 40-year-old.”

    The McCoy family moved from Hamp- ton Roads to Lynchburg in 2009. “I started out owning my first business when I was 20 years old and in college. It was an automotive reconditioning shop on the main drag in Norfolk. I did all right for a 20-year-old, I was making $900 a week. My family is filled with entrepreneurs. But I was young and inexperienced and made all kinds of business mistakes.”

    McCoy credits his mentor, (now State Sen.) Scott Rigell, for his in-depth business education. “I had a contract with his company, but he also agreed to meet with me whenever I needed, and he was available, to discuss how to run a business…If you want to meet a really nice and honest guy, that’s Scott Rigell.”

    Thirty years later, McCoy still loves running a business and he loves teaching others how to do it. He schedules and teaches a regular webinar on his company’s website, http://3vdesignmedia. com/web-marketing/.

    His passion for sharing best marketing practices resulted in the creation of a Minority Business Expo in Lynchburg in 2011. During a few years’ hiatus (during this country’s economic doldrums), the Expo grew into the largest Minority Busi- ness Expo in Virginia.

    Last April 2015, more than 100 vendors participated from every corner of the Commonwealth. Held at the Kirkley Ho- tel and Conference Center in Lynchburg, the Expo was hosted by 3V Design Me- dia, LLC and co-sponsored by the Vir- ginia Department of Small Business & Supplier Diversity, the Virginia Department of Transportation, Centra Health, the Asian American Chamber of Commerce, and the Region 2000 Workforce Investment Board.

    Exhibitors and speakers included representatives of tech firms, accountants, janitorial services, management consulting, health care, transportation, and banking (BB&T, Union and Wells Fargo). Business owners included African-Americans, Asians, Native Americans, Indians, and Hispanics. A commendation was forthcoming from U.S. Sen. John Warner.

    The Business Expo’s mission is to bring together some of the Virginia’s top business leaders and agencies to assist and provide minority-owned businesses the resources they need to sustain, Unlocking Keys to SUCCESS The man behind the Minority Business Expo focuses on helping entrepreneurs succeed. OCTOBER 2015 21 grow, and innovate their small business. The event includes guest presenters that specialize in various business disciplines, work - shops, forums, networking, and many opportunities for small businesses.

    The next Minority Business Expo will be April 22, 2016. Vendor space and sponsor - ship opportunities are avail - able. You can keep up with event planning — including the naming of a very special keynote speaker — at www. minoritybusinessexpova. com .

    Future plans? McCoy e-mailed that: “I, along with few other minority business entrepreneurs (MBEs), will be launching The Minority Business Council of Cen - tral Virginia on October 1, 2015…it is a non-govern - mental entity that encour - ages entrepreneurship on a regional, national and inter - national level among MBE’s. The goal is local and region - al economic (growth) while pursuing larger markets.The council will also monitor and advocate local, and regional procurement opportunities for MBE’s. More information will be coming.”

    Tireless professional cre - ativity and enthusiasm are doing big things for central Virginia. 

  • Taste Buds

    Originally working for a newspaper in Jamaica, Cliff Folkes, the owner of Cliff’s Jammerican Restaurant, travelled to New York to learn photography. It was there that he met his wife and decided to stay in the States. He moved his family to Roanoke in 2006 because he wanted them to be able to live and grow in a better environment.

    Folkes is not alone in his decision to emigrate from Jamaica to the United States; he is part of the Jamaican diaspora. A diaspora is, according to Merriam-Webster, a group of people who live outside the area in which they had lived for a long time or in which their ancestors lived. The main cause has been cited as slow economic growth and limited-to-nojob opportunities. If you were to travel to New York City or Canada, you would find a large Jamaican population for this reason.

    At Cliff’s, you are not going to feel like you are on the sandy beaches of Jamaica. There is no fancy décor and you probably won’t sit at the three-stooled bar that occupies the space to enjoy your meal. You will get delicious takeout Jamaican cuisine at very reasonable prices, especially for the portion sizes. Folkes pays homage to his home country by the exterior of the restaurant being painted the colors of the Jamaican flag ˗ yellow, green and black ˗ and even more so by the traditional dishes he offers on the menu.

    In most Jamaican households the women cook and the men eat, but Folkes has no sisters, so his mother taught him how to cook instead. He said that his favorite thing to cook is fish because “there are so many different ways to fix it.” Fish is not on the menu, but you can special order it a day ahead of time. Everything on the menu is subject to availability, so if you have a craving for brown stew chicken that you must have filled, call ahead so that you are not disappointed if they have run out. 

    Most of the customers come during the lunch hour and then business picks up again around three or four o’clock in the afternoon. When I asked Folkes if he ever has to encourage his customers to try something new, he says, “They all know what they want and I never have to encourage anyone.” Most of what people want, according to Folkes, are the jerk dishes and oxtail.

    I challenged my husband to try the popular dish of oxtails, something that I had grown up eating while living in New York. He was a skeptic and not too certain but he soon found out that they are delicious and will probably be one of his guilty pleasures. Oxtail isn’t code for something else; it is exactly what it says it is. The oxtails at Cliff’s are chopped into pieces, stewed and prepared so that instead of the fattiness taking away from the meat, it adds to the flavor in a great way. Folkes tells me that he can go through sixty pounds of oxtail in a single week.

    We also ordered the brown stew chicken, jerk chicken, curry chicken and curry goat (as you can tell we wanted a well-rounded experience!). Each dish is served with a side of red beans and rice and steamed cabbage. Red beans and rice, or rice and peas, is a classic pairing with Jamaican food. While the rice has a sweet flavor due to the use of coconut milk, it is a perfect accompaniment to soak up the sauces from the brown stew chicken and the curry dishes on the menu. 

    The brown stew chicken is first seared in a hot skillet to seal in the juices of the chicken and then flour, oil and water give it a “gravy” element. The meat then cooks and simmers until it is tender and almost falling off the bone, and is served over the rice and beans. This dish is for you if you do not prefer a spicy meal; rather than rely on the heat, this dish leans heavily on the minced garlic and other spices used while searing the chicken.

    The jerk chicken at first glance seems simply spice-rubbed, but upon further observation I noticed there is clearly a sauce element to it as well. It is grilled initially on a small grill they have sitting outside the restaurant, and then slow-cooked in a pot until tender. The jerk seasonings did have a bit of heat, but it was not overwhelming. The cabbage was freshly steamed and worked well with the spiciness of the jerk chicken.

    Although I have attempted to enjoy goat meat many times before (without much luck), this was an opportunity to try it in a curried style. The meat is prepared similar to the oxtails, chopped into smaller pieces and slowcooked, which makes it very bony and very tender. Unlike the curry chicken, the goat had a gamey flavor that works well with the curried spices.

    Not on the menu, jerk pork is an option that is only offered Friday through Sunday. Do call ahead to order this because we were told it was quite popular. We ordered a good amount of food and wish we had room in our stomachs to try the other dishes such as the beef patties or jerk shrimp, but it simply gives us something to look forward to next time.

    Because so many of the meats are stewed and chopped, you really tend to have to eat with your hands; if not then you may be in danger of getting a bone that you did not know was there.

    Cliff’s Jammerican, previously on Orange Avenue for four years, relocated to 2619 Cove Road in Roanoke several months ago. The hours are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Again, call ahead at (540) 330-4501 or (540) 330-4502 because these hours are flexible.

  • Editor's Note

    “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”

    - Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple


    “If you’re not a risk taker, you should get the hell out of business.”

    - Ray Kroc, founder of McDonald’s


    In our October issue, we are dedicating our stories toward our business community. The individuals featured in the magazine talk about the highs and lows of being an entrepreneur.

    They have seen the passion that drives them to wake up every day and live what has been their dream. Being an entrepreneur myself, I understand the long hours of work, the constant struggle of making sure that not only the bills of the business are taken care of, but also that the bills of the home and family are maintained. Even with the struggle, I think we all agree that we’d rather not be anywhere else. We are passionate and we wake up to know that we are in control of our destiny.

    We are dreamers; we believe that we have the power and authority to provide for ourselves, our families and our community. The business operators that we focus on this month talk about their struggles, especially running a business of color, and see the success of the hard work that they put in.

    Owning your own business is not for the faint of heart, as these business owners that we showcase in this issue will testify. However, you will also read about the passion for why they do the things they do. We should applaud, appreciate and respect their work.


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