Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, May 5, 2012

MVNews this week:  Page 17



 Mountain Views News Saturday, May 5, 2012 


Photo and caption by Bill Coburn


The latest on Business News, Trends and Techniques

Following a soft 
opening on Saturday, 
April 21st, Sierra 
Madre’s newest 
downtown business, 
P.E. Deans, 
a furniture and 
houseware consignment 
store at 49 W. 
Sierra Madre Blvd. , 
will hold its Grand 
Opening celebration 
on Friday, May 
4th at 5pm with a 
traditional ribbon-
cutting by the Sierra 
Madre Chamber 
of Commerce, followed 
by a reception 
in the store.


Featuring fine quality 
furniture, decorative 
glassware and gifts, 
P.E. Deans is named 
for the owner’s 
mother, Patricia 
Elizabeth Deans, 
said owner Sherry 
Grossi, who, with 
her husband, Cesare, also own Zugo’s Café across the street. Having spent much of her life 
in the retail industry, Ms. Grossi is excited to offer contemporary and traditional furniture 
by some of America’s finest manufacturers, with the current inventory including merchandise 
by Baker and Kreiss, among others, at very affordable prices.


P.E. Deans is open from 11 to 6 on Tuesday through Friday, 10 to 6 on Saturday, and 10 to 3 
on Sundays. They are closed on Mondays. The website, currently under construction and 
coming soon, is at If you have some quality items you’d like to consign, 
please call Sherry at (626) 355-0400.

By La Quetta M. Shamblee, 


I firmly believe in supporting local independently owned businesses, which I demonstrate 
by patronizing and referring customers to them on a regular basis. It made my heart proud 
recently when I received the type of feedback that shows the positive impact one person 
can have on creating new customers and sales for one local business. About seven months 
ago, my partner and I invited her nephew and his wife to join us for lunch at The Loose Teas 
Café & Gifts in Monrovia. They live in the neighboring City of Duarte and the four of us 
can usually be found dining at a restaurant in Monrovia, Sierra Madre or Pasadena during 
our routine Friday evening get -togethers.

Apparently, Loose Teas has become one of their regular spots when he picks his wife up 
from work each Wednesday to treat her to lunch. Whenever we go in now, the owners 
always ask us about the nephew and his wife. All resulting from that initial invitation to 
a place that we knew they’d enjoy since they both like tea. The nephew informed me that 
he was interested in purchasing one of the tea brewing containers that he saw on display 
at Loose Teas, but the price was $25. Being the conscientious person he is, he decided to 
check online to see if he could find a better price. “Wow! Here it is at for only 
$13 plus shipping and handling, so I’ll save a few dollars,” he thought to himself. He told 
me that he stopped shortly before processing the online purchase and thought about the 
wonderful reception that he gets each time he enters Loose Teas business and decided that 
a few extra dollars would be better spent supporting this local businesses

It’s a no-brainer that saving money makes sense. It can literally make cents add up to 
dollars (pun intended). However, it is also important to look at the bigger picture when 
considering how our individual purchasing choices contribute to, or take away from the 
local economy. For purposes of this discourse, the local economy is loosely defined as your 
residence (or business) as the epicenter of a local economy that spans out is all directions 
within a five to ten minute drive.

The internet has evolved as one of the most important pit stops to find the best possible prices 
for numerous products and services. Americans have become conditioned to discounts at 
megastores like WalMart, Costco and Sam’s Club. It is obvious that the majority of small 
businesses are not able to compete with these pricing strategies. However, the owners 
of small businesses are the ones most likely to support local nonprofits and schools with 
generous donations for a variety of community activities and organizations. The person 
with the authority to make decisions about whether a donation will be made and the nature 
of the donation is often working onsite in the local business on a routine basis, which 
makes them readily accessible to approach.

Megastores and corporate chain stores that make donations always require some type 
of formal application process that requires the expenditure of time or the hiring of a 
professional to prepare the application or written request. Most often the applicant will be 
directed to a website to complete an online process. This is always followed by a waiting 
period to allow time for some type of review process to determine if the community event 
or organization has been selected to receive a donation.

Small businesses often charge more for certain items because they don’t benefit from lower 
prices of large chain stores that purchase in massive quantities. In turn, it is important to 
encourage more of our neighbors to become more frequent patrons of small independent 
businesses, even when it might cost a bit more. Not only will we support their efforts to stay 
in business by generating a reasonable profit, but collectively, we help to create the financial 
means that allow them to contribute more to the activities and events that contribute to our 
quality of life.


On Sunday, the last note was played, the last meal served at one of Sierra Madre’s favorite 
‘spots’. Owner Mario Lalli (above) says he will return his full attention to his music, 
his true love. On Sunday numerous bands and patrons came out to wish him well.

Photo by Dean Lee