New businesses, ownership changes

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Family members of Jo and the late Don Shinkle, long-time Idyllwild residents, have opened a new nursery in the location of The Green Trees nursery on Highway 243. John and Lisa Shinkle, landscapers in Lake Arrowhead and part-time residents, opened Four Seasons Nursery in April.

Lisa said, “We always wanted a nursery.” John grew up in Idyllwild so when the previous nursery closed for good after 35 years, they decided to open here. They specialize in ornamental and decorative plants, from flowers to succulents. “Ninety-eight percent of what we have is hardy and will keep but with a selection of annual bedding plants as well,” said Lisa.

They brought back Bonnie Reynolds, who worked at the old nursery last summer. “We have a lot of shrubs and trees that do well, too,” said Reynolds. They also hired Lani Reese and Christine Ziegenfuss-Holanda, a design specialist.  The nursery is open six days a week from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday and Sunday, and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday, and will be open through October for fall plantings. “Come and walk through our beautiful garden,” said Reynolds.

Shane Stewart has taken back the reins of the Rustic Theatre from Phil and Barbara Calderone who operated it from Feb. 15, 2013 until Monday, July 8, of this year. Stewart had owned and operated it since 2007.

He is painting the inside and outside, and making more upgrades. “It’s going to be better than the way it was [when he updated it before],” Stewart said. But he is planning more than just aesthetic changes. He still is going to show movies but the focus will change to become “Idyllwild’s entertainment center,” he said. He will bring back more live theater and concerts but also wants to make the theater a daytime venue.

That includes bingo during the day, particularly for seniors who might not have air conditioning in their homes in 90-degree weather who can come into a cool place and leave later in the afternoon when temperatures have cooled. “But that is just the tip of the iceberg,” he added, saying he may play older movies during the day, for example.

Peter and Antonietta Zuber of the Swiss Fondue House closed the restaurant mid-June and returned to their home country of Switzerland. They stated in the June 26 Town Crier that the decision was for health reasons. The restaurant was opened last fall in the old Bread Basket location.

However, Thomas and Kristen Bachmann are planning to open Tommy’s Kitchen in the same location after they have made many renovations of the deck, kitchen and office. Since the couple is busy with many upgrades at this time, Thomas hasn’t established a menu, and with county approval and licenses still ahead, they don’t expect to open for another three months.

The Bachmanns knew the Zubers in Huntington Beach where Thomas was a chef. He has been a chef for more than 25 years. He also recently owned a restaurant in Switzerland for seven years and traveled back and forth. And for those seven years, he sought a location in the U.S. but the recession held him back.

So, through the Zubers, the Bachmanns learned about Idyllwild and have moved here full-time. Son James, 11, a cancer survivor in remission for two years, will attend Idyllwild School and Steven, 16, will attend Hemet High School as a junior.

Thomas said they will open for breakfast and lunch in the beginning. As a chef and caterer in the past, he has prepared many fancy dishes. But in Idyllwild, “I want to take care of the local community. I want to make good, homestyle cooking using my own recipes, my own food, and maybe a little traditional Swiss food … I am famous for my tossed salads and fruits.”

Lori Davey of Wellness Waters and Massage moved from the building next door to Tommy’s Kitchen to just across North Circle Drive at the corner of River Drive on July 1. The location gives her added space and has been completely renovated.

Look for the yellow barn house with the red door. She is in back upstairs. “This little house stands out,” Davey said.

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