Rocky’s Place

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In the heart of Loudon County, Rocky’s Place has established itself as a premier destination for family entertainment. Owned and led by Rob Renner, Rocky’s Place is home to a world-class miniature golf course, offering an unparalleled blend of natural beauty and challenging obstacles. This family-friendly attraction has become a beacon of fun and leisure for residents and visitors alike.

At the heart of Rocky’s Place is its 18-hole course, where participants can enjoy a round of miniature golf for an affordable $5. The design philosophy emphasizes creating an enjoyable and challenging experience, ensuring repeat business through interesting shots and thoughtful course layouts. The course is meticulously crafted to balance undulations, banking, green size, cup positioning, and a host of refinements that distinguish a successful miniature golf course from the rest.

A well-designed course rewards skillful putting without overly penalizing poor shots, creating an inclusive and engaging environment for players of all ages. The course accommodates up to 100 players per hour during peak times, ensuring a steady flow of visitors seeking an hour of family-friendly fun.

Before all this success, Renner’s journey with Rocky’s Place encountered roadblocks to funding the startup. Approaching local banks yielded little success until he sought guidance from the Tennessee Small Business Development Center at Roane State Community College.

Stephen Williams, the lead consultant and center director, began assisting Renner with the complexities of the business expansion plan. Understanding the intricacies of the proposed venture, the counselor was able to guide Renner through business and financial planning, helping to articulate the project story through a business plan narrative and a financial business model.

Renner, having already run a successful ice cream shop, quickly grasped the financial planning process. With the TSBDC’s assistance, he assembled a comprehensive financial loan package and received recommendations for potential lenders. The result was a successfully secured commercial loan totaling $500,000, paving the way for the development of Rocky’s miniature golf course.

The TSBDC at Roane State remains committed to supporting Rocky’s Place as it continues to evolve. Future plans include batting cages and laser tag facilities, further enhancing the breadth of offerings for patrons seeking diverse entertainment experiences.

As Rocky’s Place gears up for its peak operation in the upcoming spring, Renner expresses gratitude for the invaluable assistance provided by the TSBDC. “We appreciate the assistance provided by TSBDC at Roane State Community College and look forward to working with them as we continue to expand our business,” he said. This client quote encapsulates the collaborative spirit between Rocky’s Place and the TSBDC, underscoring the shared commitment to success and growth.

The Southern Daughter Boutique team is made up of owner, Maria Skipper, and associates Liza Williams and Laura Warrington. Maria first came to the TSBDC in mid-2021 to understand business forms and the ins and outs of owning a business. Maria was a first-time business owner who wanted to ensure she had proper guidance when it came to the backend business. Throughout the first year of business, Maria sought the TSBDC at Roane State for guidance, training, and resources such as QuickBooks and accounting services. As her business began to grow, she collaborated with the TSBDC on marketing strategy, social media, and website design.

The TSBDC has assisted Maria Skipper with strategic business planning and sales and marketing strategy, resulting in substantial reductions in debt and overhead costs due to her successful plan to reduce overhead. Maria opened her second location after 24 months of operating her flagship location due to the success of the business. She offers the same quality clothing, accessories, and décor.

Maria told us, “TSBDC has been there for me from the beginning when I needed to learn about tax reporting and make connections with other professionals to make a supportive team.  I was able to connect with a QuickBooks professional and CPA as well as have the support of the Oak Ridge Chamber of Commerce from the start.  I know that as I grow I can rely on TSBDC to guide me through new endeavors.”




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