WCEDC grants - DSC_4732.JPG

The Sharps, center, eceived the $6,000 grant for existing businesses during Thursday's Warren County Economic Development Corporation grant presentation. Diane Hall, mayor of Milo, left, and Rachel Gocken, executive director of WCEDC, right, presented the check.

Indianola’s West Hill Brewing Company and Agritech Aviation were the big winners at Thursday night’s Warren County Economic Development Corporation’s small business grant contest.

West Hill Brewing Company, a new business owned by Heather Gaumer, will open this summer.

The new business plans to produce craft beer and craft soda and provide a taproom for customers to play games, listen to music and participate in other activities.

She and her husband, Doug, are both Indianola High School and Simpson College graduates.

“We’ve always drank beer,” Doug said during their presentation Thursday.

He clarified his father is German and their family enjoys attending Oktoberfest.

The two plan to hire four full-time staff members and at least four part-time staff.

They’ve already purchased $29,800 worth of equipment and have a building on West Salem.

Heather and Doug plan to use the $4,000 of grant money they earned on special coolers so they can brew special kinds of beers such as dunkels, pilsners and German style beers.

Agritech Aviation, a third-generation aerial application business currently run by Wes Sharp, has been around for 72 years.

Still, Sharp said, there’s room to expand.

Agritech will use its money to purchase a new 30-foot gooseneck trailer to help load airplanes.

The business sprays 15,000 acres of farmland in Warren County annually and 138,000 acres state-wide.

The trailers will make it easier to get planes to those far away places.

Three existing businesses pitched ideas for the grant money Thursday. The other two finalists were CanoeSport Outfitters, which is hoping to expand its rental and concessions business, and Valentine Food Company, which is looking to expand its web presence.

Other finalists in the start-up business category included the Indianola Independent Advocate, which needs some new equipment, and Tipsy Charm, which is hoping to open a brick and mortar store in Indianola soon.

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