TARCOG Loans Help Small Businesses
What do clothes and accessories, trampolines, RV’s and a 14-person pedal powered party trolley have in common in the Tennessee Valley?
They’re all businesses which received funding from TARCOG’s Revolving Loan Fund so entrepreneurs could start, buy, or grow a business, making an impact on the local economy.
Lee Terry, TARCOG’s director of Economic Development and Planning, said two new loans were recently approved to create a new trampoline park in Jackson County, and another for the purchase of an RV adventure rental company in Madison County.
Elevate Scottsboro will be the first trampoline park in Jackson County after a $175,000 loan was approved to help get the business started. Owners Nick and Dolores Hambrick hope to see the new business open in August.
A loan for $165,000 was also approved for Tony Stark to purchase the existing My RV Adventure RV Fleet, an RV rental center for travel and adventuring in Harvest.
Success Story: Ann’s Apparel and Accessories
Faith Curby received a $50,000 loan in 2021 to buy Ann’s Apparel and Accessories in Scottsboro.
“I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today without the funding that I received,” Faith says. “This loan allowed me to continue working my dream job by purchasing new inventory, and get updated technology needed to run my business smoothly.
Last year she was able to launch a new e-commerce website that allows online shopping and she’s currently remodeling the store to create a more modern look.
“The process with the loan was easy and any questions I had were answered in a timely manner,” she said. “I would do it again if needed and would encourage other small business owners to apply if they need help.”
Visit Ann’s Apparel in person at 1509 South Broad Street or visit the online store.
Success Story: Rocket City Rover
Tori Moore started the Rocket City Rover, which is a 14-person pedal-powered party trolley that travels downtown Huntsville. It features 12 bike seats, two of which are pedal-free, and a two-person bench in the back. If you don’t want to pedal, there’s an on-board electric motor.
A $23,000 loan in 2018 helped her get started and she refinanced it through the program in 2023.
The Rocket City Rover offers rides seven days a week between noon and 11 p.m. The Rover does pub crawls, holiday-themed rids, Huntsville history rides, progressive dinners, brunch rides and customizable private tours.
For more information or to book a trip contact via email at email@example.com or call 256-679-1739.
How the fund works
Terry said TARCOG partners with Neighborhood Concepts, Inc., to administer its Revolving Loan Fund through the North Alabama Revolving Loan Fund, LLC.
The Loan Fund provides loans ranging from $5,000 to $350,000 to small businesses and nonprofit organizations in north Alabama. Eligible uses include machinery & equipment; working capital; leasehold improvements; real estate acquisitions or rehab; business acquisitions, and the refinance of higher-interest business debt.
Tannisha Orr, small business loan officer, says the flexibility of the NARLF program can be a game changer for small businesses.
“We are helping our community and helping our small businesses grow by having the flexibility to change payments, a extend or modify loan terms truly givers small business owners the flexibility they need to sustain their business.”
Terry says anyone interested in learning more about the RLF may learn more or fill out an application.