Fuse Project announced 71 teams are already registered to participate in the 3rd annual Dragon Boat Festival on Saturday, June 11, at Mobile’s Battleship Memorial Park, according to a recent news release.

“Without a doubt, the move to the Battleship has definitely allowed us to increase participation in this year’s festival; but it is truly unbelievable how fast the teams are signing up,” Adrienne Golden, Fuse Project’s executive director, said. “We only have 10 spots remaining, so if you are planning to participate in our festival, please go online and register to reserve your team.” 

Fuse Project also plans to refine its organizational focus in 2016 to hone in on projects centering on after-school programs for kids of all ages in Mobile and Baldwin counties, according to Golden.

“Our goal is to ensure that all kids have access to an after-school program that increases their overall quality of life, and to foster a healthy family dynamic for the working parents and their children,” Grant Zarzour, Fuse Project’s co-founder and chairman, said.

Since its formation in 2012, Fuse Project has raised more than $300,000 for charity and has supported numerous causes promoting health, fitness, education and social responsibility of children along Alabama’s Gulf Coast. In the future, Fuse Project plans to grow beyond the annual Dragon Boat Festival through a number of opportunities that will engage the community with unique and creative fundraising events.

For more information about the event, visit www.fuseproject.org or contact Golden at adrienne@fuseproject.org.

Commercial real estate moves
Professional chef and restaurateur Pete Blohme announced the recent opening of a new Panini Pete’s restaurant at 1071 U.S. Highway 98 E. in Destin, Florida. The eatery is the company’s first in Florida; a grand opening is planned for sometime this summer. In 2006 the locally owned company launched in Fairhope and in 2012 opened a second location in Mobile.

A new Great Clips salon held its grand opening at McGowin Park on Saturday, April 23, according to Bryan Holt of Southpace Properties, who represented the tenant in the transaction. Buff Teague with JLL worked for the landlord.

Mobile Bay Rubber & Gasket has signed a five-year lease to occupy approximately 10,200 square feet of office and warehouse space located in the former Fleet Pride building at 1550 S. Broad St. The property consists of approximately 0.82 acres near the Mobile Aeroplex at Brookley facility, according to Jay Roberds of NAI Mobile. Mobile Bay Rubber & Gasket is a distributor of industrial products such as hydraulic and industrial hoses, gaskets, conveyor belting, safety equipment and fluid sealing products. The company is owned and operated by Robert Bernhardt, president of Pensacola Rubber & Gasket; Scott Wilder, president of Birmingham Rubber & Gasket; and Charles Brown. The location will open for business June 1.

Mobile Nail and Beauty Supply recently purchased the 22,000-square-foot former Bronstein’s Furniture building at 462 Azalea Road in Mobile. Stirling Properties account executive Nathan Handmacher managed the transaction. Anders, Boyett and Brady PC handled the title work.

Local investors recently purchased 60 acres at the corner of Hickory Street and Michigan Avenue in Foley for $435,500. Plans are in place to convert the property into a future residential development. Robert Cook of Vallas Realty represented the sellers and Margery Baxter with M.J. Baxter & Associates worked for the buyer.

Autoco has leased a 7,500-square-foot building on a two-acre lot located at 7032 Airport Blvd. in West Mobile. Nathan Handmacher with Stirling Properties handled the transaction.

Boos & Navarre Engineering recently leased a 2,600-square-foot office space at 2510 Main St. in Daphne and have relocated their office there. Robert Cook with Vallas Realty handled the transaction.

1702 executive program starts second season
Per a news release, 1702, a locally founded executive network of chief executive officers and business leaders covering a wide swath of business sectors around the region, recently started its second year of study sessions involving networking, counseling and training.

Class presenters will share their success stories and lessons learned on topics critical to launching, scaling and exiting a company. These include corporate formation structures, legal and risk, raising venture capital, driving revenue, building a board, recruiting and retaining top talent, and successful exit strategies.

Formed in partnership with the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, 1702 is a combined vision of Michael Chambers with the University of South Alabama and entrepreneur Dean Parker. It was designed to emulate the successful entrepreneurial history found around the San Francisco Bay area’s Silicon Valley.

Board chairman Parker said “1702 has been a smashing success and I am excited for this year’s class. We added health care as an additional industry sector to this year’s program and now have five areas from which we pull nominees.”

Class participants are working directly with an active board of business executives from the area.

1702 student participants include: Walt Armentrout, Heart Legacy; Taylor Atchison, Galt Gulch; Dean Brown, Alabama Orthopaedic Clinic; Laura Burton, Verge; Lance Covan, Mitternight; Adam Gnek, SGD Enterprises LLC; Elyse Goonan, One Mobile; Abe Harper, Harper Technologies; Haley Hill, Access Magazine; Zehera Husain, Doorstep Trash & Recycling; Jeremiah Newell, Mobile Area Education Foundation; David Roberts, Mitchell Cancer Institute; Mardia Scott Jr., Easy Ads; Ajay Singh, Tatva Biosciences LLC; Catina Short, Daten System Consulting; Daniel Tucker, WebSouth East; Brian Ward, Doc RX; Hayley Van Antwerp, Innovation Portal; and Dirk Young, Hurricane Electronics Inc.

Board members of 1702 are Michael Chambers, USA; Terry Harbin, BancorpSouth; John Jefferies, Wilkins Miller LLC; Kim Littlefield, USA; Frank Lott, Heritage Homes; Keith Manwaring, ManwaringSolutions; Sandy Myers, ASF Logistics Inc.; Andy Newton, Southern Light; Dean Parker, Vita Capital; Bill Sisson, Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce; Rich Sullivan, Red Square Agency; Jay Watkins, Maynard Cooper & Gale PC; Brian Willman, Regions Bank; Mark Nix, Mobile Infirmary; and Beth Stafford, Stafford & Associates.