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Mexican restaurant opens in Pequot Lakes; Salon 77 offers services

Barajas Mexican Grill and Cantina opened in Pequot Lakes a month ago, a little more than a year after owner Ernesto (Ruben) Barajas had predicted. Health department requirements delayed the opening of the business, which underwent renovations tha...

Pam Wachholz has opened a full service salon near Sherwood Forest Lodge.
Pam Wachholz has opened a full service salon near Sherwood Forest Lodge.

Barajas Mexican Grill and Cantina opened in Pequot Lakes a month ago, a little more than a year after owner Ernesto (Ruben) Barajas had predicted.

Health department requirements delayed the opening of the business, which underwent renovations that included ceiling work, plumbing and other changes. Videos on the Barajas Facebook page indicated that busy inspection schedules delayed the opening further by leaving Barajas to wait on appointments with inspectors each time a new change was made.

The restaurant had a soft opening April 26 and for the past month the parking lot has been crowded during meal times. Employment applications are still being accepted.

Salon 77

Three professionals have converged near Sherwood Forest Lodge on County State Aid Highway 77 in Lake Shore under the Salon 77 name.

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Owner and hair stylist Pam Wachholz set up shop in what was once the "Maid Mariannes" bridal cottage, where brides and bridesmaids renting the venue prepared for weddings.

"I have always thought it was intriguing to have my own space and not to rent from someone," Wachholz said. "The pieces fell into place when John Poston of Sherwood Forest approached me with an offer. He said he wanted to turn this bride's cottage into a salon and gave me a deal I couldn't refuse."

The building required work to bring it up to regulation as a salon, but Wachholz said she worked to maintain a comfortable atmosphere where her customers feel more like they are at home, and less like they are in a business. Since that time she has had customers whom she said have instinctively removed their shoes upon entering before being told they can leave them on.

"Going into this I felt like I wanted my space to be comfortable, like walking into your own living room," Wachholz said.

Wachholz has moved on from renting a chair in someone else's salon to offering space for independent professionals to rent. Together, they offer a range of services for virtually any interested party.

"I'm a full-service hair salon," Wachholz said. "I do men, women and children's hair cutting. All sorts of colors, foil applications. I do texture waves. I might have eyebrow shaping and facial hair waxing services. The nail tech Kris Arneson will offer manicures, pedicures, acrylic, gel nails and then Pam Martin does reflexology and reiki."

Wachholz has been a hairstylist since 1978. This is not her first management experience. Immediately after receiving her certifications as a hair stylist she managed a salon at a Twin Cities spa for many years.

Salon 77 is a Focus Paul Mitchell Salon. A grand opening is planned Thursday, June 8, with 25 percent off services booked in June and all retail products. Sherwood Forest Lodge and the Iron Waffle will provide hors d'oeuvres.

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Pam Wachholz has opened a full service salon near Sherwood Forest Lodge.
Pam Wachholz has opened a full service salon near Sherwood Forest Lodge.

Travis Grimler began work at the Echo Journal Jan. 2 of 2013 while the publication was still split in two as the Pine River Journal and Lake Country Echo. He is a full time reporter/photographer/videographer for the paper and operates primarily out of the northern stretch of the coverage area (Hackensack to Jenkins).
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