Thursday, April 23, 2009
Lavora’s celebrates 25th
By SUE WATSON
Lavora Blake presented certificates of appreciation to loyal customers and gave thanks to God Friday at a 25th Anniversary Celebration of her business in Holly Springs - Lavora’s Personal Grooming and Boutique.
Blake was joined by a number of long-time customers, family and ministers at a noon ceremony and afterward invited guests to enjoy food.
“I just want to express how thankful I am to all of you,” she said. “I could not do anything without you.”
Blake said a number of her customers over the years have done personal favors that have helped her in times of need - like going to the post office and bringing her lunch when she could not leave the salon. And success sometimes has meant that Lavora has asked a loyal customer who has a standing appointment to change that appointment time to accommodate another customer, she said. She let them know if it was inconvenient, they didn’t have to do it.
Two of Blake’s first customers in Holly Springs were Alice Wilkins and Hattie Chambers. Flora Bain is a customer who has kept a standing appointment for 25 years. Her oldest customer with a standing appointment is Ruby Mason, who was not able to attend the celebration but was presented a certificate of appreciation in absentia.
Lavora said she has two male customers who have come to get regular pedicures for over 20 years.
Lavora’s career as a manicurist began in Germantown at the Finishing Glo Shop in July 1979. She attended night school at East Vocational High School in Memphis where she was introduced to cosmetology and finished her training at Allure’s Beauty School in Memphis where she specialized in facials, manicures and pedicures.
She opened for business in Holly Springs on April 17, 1984.
Lavora’s has been in the business 30 years and has had her own practice for 25 years, she said proudly.
“I definitely give God the praises and glory and I appreciate my loyal customers, past and present,” she said. “My customers are so nice to me.
“When I was getting started in my own business 25 years ago, I planned to take a business trip. One of my loyal customers advised me hotels would not take checks and she asked me if I had a credit card. I did not have one and she gave me hers to use. I reimbursed her when the bill came in. There are so many things I can go back and be grateful for - like customers who brought me a number of items useful in my shop like accessories and appliances.”
Present to help celebrate Lavora’s Personal Grooming and Boutique’s 25th Anniversary were her mother and father, Elmira and Elcue Curry, her two daughters, Terrlyn Blake and Sharonda Sangster, and her brother Alvin Curry from Stone Mountain, Ga., who served as emcee.
Her pastor, Dr. Rev. Coker A. George Jr., of Greenfield Presbyterian Church, read scripture and Rev. Willie Jeffries, pastor of Strawberry Church, offered the prayer.
Several guests and customers provided words of encouragement and testimonials during the event. She gave door prizes to all guests.
At a 5 p.m. drawing, 25 registered guests received gift certificates, six of whom received $50 U.S. Savings Bonds.
“To everyone who assisted me and to the sponsors of the special drawings, thank you,” she said.
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