Patrick and Pat Rice, the enterprising partners behind
The Tin Plate, Elwood's 2017 Business of the Year
It’s been a hallmark year for The Tin Plate, the restaurant-bar owned and operated by father and son, Patrick Rice, Senior and Junior. Praises for their service and cuisine – especially their tenderloin sandwiches – generate five-star customer reviews and bring in ever more customers from throughout Indiana and as far away as North Dakota. Most recently, the Elwood Chamber surprised The Tin Plate with its Best Business of 2017 award, presented to Pat (Sr.) and Patrick (Jr.) on November 30 at the Chamber’s annual celebration dinner. We felt fortunate to pin the duo down for what was supposed to be a 20-minute interview, but due to the abundant enthusiasm shared by the two, the interview lasted over an hour. Brevity is not the Rices’ strong suit. Thankfully, for diners who frequent The Tin Plate, running a top-notch business is. Following is the result of our hour-long, sit-down Q&A.
QUESTION: Did you start the Tin Plate restaurant or had it already been established when you opened?
PATRICK RICE JR. (PATRICK): I bought the building with the intention of taking it from what it’d always been, just a bar, to a full-fledged family restaurant that we could be proud of and that everyone would like to visit. … Prior to buying the place, he [Pat Sr.] and I were talking about buying a building on South Anderson Street to start a pizza place. In the meantime, the man who owned this building called me up and offered me a deal I couldn’t refuse. It was like it was meant to be. Dad and I walked in with flashlights…
Board member Sharon Church at her desk at St.Vincent Mercy Hospital, where she is controller.
Who better to represent Elwood’s Chamber of Commerce than someone whose roots run deep in the very community they represent?
Roots don’t run much deeper than Sharon Church’s. She was born and raised in Elwood, graduated from Elwood Community High School, married her husband, Kevin, in Elwood’s East Main Street Christian Church, and when she was ready to settle into a career and raise a family, she and Kevin decided to stay right here in the very town they had called home their entire lives.
Lucky Strike Lanes owner, Chuck Kane
When Chuck Kane accepted a consulting job in Warsaw seven years ago, he thought it would be a one-year commitment. But earlier this summer, after seven years in Warsaw, the Elwood native decided it was time to come home, where he could apply his professional expertise to updating his own business, Lucky Strike Lanes. Since then, that’s where his entire focus has been.
“We’ve been tweaking old ideas,” Chuck said, “stealing some and coming up with new ones all our own. … We have a lot of potential. If our stars align, we’ll have some success.”
Editor’s note: It seems like Chamber member Amber Loy-Boston, owner of Cloud Nine Therapeutic Massage, is always on the go. We got lucky recently when we caught up with her for a few minutes, just long enough to ask a few questions about what made her decide to go into massage therapy, how she started her business, what led to all the other services, and what she sees in her future. Following is the result of that conversation.
Q: What led you to decide to go into business for yourself?
A: It was 2008. During a birthday party for my best friend’s son, the moment had come to break the news that we were moving to Florida. It was mentioned for me to go to massage therapy school to continue what Amber Ball had already pioneered seven years prior in Elwood.
The Elwood Chamber welcomed four new members to its board of directors this year. One of the members is Alicia Macke (formerly Hoose), an employee of Red Gold, an Elwood native, and a new bride. As a former Elwood entrepreneur, Alicia brings a perspective to the Chamber board that is as fresh as it is experienced. As her two-year term gets under way, we are eager to learn more about her and her ideas. A recent Q&A interview with Alicia provides a preview.
Q: Please tell us a bit about yourself.
A: I was born and raised in Elwood but moved to Frankton approximately two years ago. I graduated from Elwood High School and Indiana Business College, now known as Harrison College. I have two children, Preston and Ashlyn Hoose. I recently expanded my family and added two more kids - Jake and Anna Macke - when Jerry and I married March 11.