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June 2006

Our Members Speak Out

Wicky-Up Ranch B&B, Woodlake, CA

We asked: Becoming an innkeeper takes more than just buying an inn; it takes time and hard work. Tell us when you realized you were really an innkeeper.

Question for July: What can you do when nothing you do makes a guest happy?

Email your responses to If we publish your comments, we’ll thank you with a $25 credit in our Featured Properties Auction program!

“We’ve owned Agapé Bed & Breakfast on Cape Cod for 10 years. We decided to sell, and we just accepted an offer. I found myself looking at ads for inns for sale in other parts of the country! That’s when I realized that I must truly be an innkeeper!” – Melissa O’Rourke, Agapé Bed & Breakfast, Yarmouthport, MA

“We sponsored a rail-trail package with another inn. Travelers began at the other inn, spent the night, had breakfast, and left with a packed lunch for the trail. At breakfast, travelers determined what time they would arrive here for dinner that night, and the other innkeeper would call to let me know. They would spend the night, have breakfast and go home.

“Two couples visited with the package and had dinner here on a Thursday. On Monday, one of the men called to book all three rooms for a weekend for a football game at the college – which was just blocks from the other inn! And after confirming the availability, his next words were, ‘And I want the dinner!’ I knew I was doing it right." – Kathleen A. Panek, Gillum House Bed & Breakfast, Shinnston, WV

“We are an inner city Inn B&B next to Independence Hall and three major hospitals. I finally realized how much I care about my guests when I got up at 5 a.m. to help a guest into a wheelchair during a severe rain so she could be at the hospital at 5:30 a.m. for surgery.

“This was the same week of college graduation, when a whole family arrived and announced they were 'allergic' to my B&B. I sent out for two GE air purifiers to keep them happy since there were no other rooms in the city on a Saturday night. No profit consideration here – just keeping a group of guests happy to attend their son’s graduation after a good night’s sleep. They hugged and kissed me upon departure!" – Kathy Cushing, The Columns on Clinton, Philadelphia, PA

Want more? For past editions of “you might be an innkeeper if,” click here and here.

Stain removal, revisited
“The laundry soap ERA has been my mainstay since I ran a daycare before the B&B. But lately the ERA has taken the color out of dark cotton sheets, so use it diluted.

“To treat drains each month, mix equal parts white vinegar and baking soda and pour down drains as it starts to fizz. This fizz action reduces soap scum buildup and helps keep drains clear.” – Kathy Cushing, The Columns on Clinton, Philadelphia, PA

“Our son-in-law, Will, told us about a great stain-removing product, Greased Lightning. He said it will take out everything but caulk and paint, and so far, he’s right. He should know, being a home builder! We use it, at 50% strength, to clean carpet spots (coffee on cream-colored carpets), and on any stain that is on a washable item of laundry. You can spray the problem, and wash it later. Just be sure to use it with good ventilation, as the label indicates. Greased Lightning is available at home improvement stores, in gallon bottles, for less than $10.” – Richard and Janet Roberts, Prosperity School Bed & Breakfast, Joplin, MO

“Murphy’s Oil Soap is the ultimate stain remover. It took green felt-tip pen out of my son’s yellow shirt. The pen and shirt were discovered because the pen made a clacking sound in the dryer.” – Kathleen A. Panek, Gillum House Bed & Breakfast, Shinnston, WV

“We keep a bottle of hydrogen peroxide and a jar of cotton balls in the laundry area. Any sheets, of any color, that have blood on them are immediately treated with peroxide. You might have to leave the cotton ball soaked in peroxide on the stain for 30 minutes or so, but after several rubbings, the stain mostly comes out. The rest comes out in the wash. It works even on large blood-stained areas. What a difference this had made for us!” – Monica and Jack Pizura, Wicky-Up Ranch Bed & Breakfast, Woodlake, CA


This Month's Sponsor

Gift Certificates

Click here to read recent comments from gift certificate purchasers. One purchaser says:

"Love it! It was very helpful to see exactly where participating B&Bs are located. I read reviews from other sites that recommended your service highly. This makes the perfect gift to thank my in-laws for paying for our wedding!

Wedding season is upon us! Are you missing out? To join the participating inns, just log in to your Home Base, or click here for more information.

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Our newest vendor members:
The Border Store
Jumping Rocks
TMG Real Estate Consultants
The Turkish Towel Company, Inc.

Click here to view our Online Trade Show. Are you a vendor? Click here to get featured!

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