Shop Talk

Perfect Shots 4 You Studio Opens

Urbana resident Lana Larina has completed work on her home photography studio, Perfect Shots 4 You, and is now available for professional studio sessions. Larina’s specialty is portraits of children and families, but she will work with any subjects, including wedding parties, student school pictures and product shoots for marketing campaigns.

“Professional portraits are important to remember special times,” Larina said. “With digital and phone cameras, some people don’t see the need anymore, but a private professional session offers a higher quality choice to preserve precious memories.” Larina does not limit the time of her photo sessions, so her customers can change clothing, props and background as often as they like. Vintage costumes and props are available, and sessions can take place in her home studio or at various outdoor settings.

Larina and her husband, Vadim, moved to the United States from Moscow 10 years ago. “My husband works at NIH [the National Institutes of Health],” Larina said, “so we first looked for homes in Germantown. After visiting a friend in Urbana, we fell in love. I called our Realtor the next day and told him to drop everything and look here.” Their son, Alex, is 7 years old and attends Carrol Creek Montessori Public Charter School (CCMPCS) in Frederick. A passion for photography and desire to spend time with her son in Urbana made the photography studio an easy choice for Larina. Photographs and information are available on the Perfect Shots 4 You Facebook page, or email

Hair Cuttery Donates Hair Cuts

The spirit of giving doesn’t stop with the holidays. Hair Cuttery’s annual Share a Haircut program continues this year in February. On Monday and Tuesday, Feb. 2 and 3, local Hair Cuttery salons, including the one in the Giant shopping center, will donate a free haircut to a homeless person for each haircut purchased. A certificate will be given to local shelters and community organizations to distribute to those in need.

With close to 900 salons, Hair Cuttery is the largest family-owned and operated chain of hair salons in the United States. The Share a Haircut program also helps veterans, victims of domestic abuse and children returning to school in the fall. “Last year’s expanded Share a Haircut program was an enormous success…reaching more than 1 million people,” said Dennis Ratner, Founder and CEO of Hair Cuttery. “This year we plan to continue that momentum, helping those less fortunate the best way we know how, with a haircut. Our stylists hope to help inspire confidence by giving back in this way.”
For more information, contact the Urbana Hair Cuttery at 301.874.0630, or visit the company’s website at

Shop Notes:

There has been a lot of work along with a lot of surprises in tearing down old materials at the former Cracked Claw site to prepare for new businesses. “It has been quite an experience finding the multiple additions in multiple architectural styles that were not in the plans,” said Andy Brown, of property developer Stanford Properties. “We found an underground vault, a large underground cistern for storing 10,000 gallons of water, an exposed bathroom and several openings, none of which were on the plans we were given.”

The developers are trying to determine the best way to stabilize and strengthen the remaining structure and make sure it is watertight. Work is also underway to build a Dash-In store and Shell gas station, an Advanced Auto Parts store and on the 355 side of the site, near CVS, a Burger King. “We tried for months, repeatedly, to solicit other businesses, too,” Brown said. “We called places like Panera and Chipotle over and over, but they all feel there are not enough residents yet to support their business.

Although the vendor has not been chosen, a grocery store is also planned on the land between Bank of America, near Buffalo Wild Wings, and Urbana High School property. Preparations are also underway for Urban Green, on the south side of CVS, a mixture of apartment homes and commercial space.

Brown said Stanford Properties is always open to serious leads on businesses on these business sites. Call Leasing Broker, Bob Shwenger, JBG Rosenfeld Retail at 301.657.7331.

Renovations of the Landon House are progressing slowly, but according to architect Alan Clapp of Urbana’s Architectural Concepts Group Inc., many of the difficult processes are complete. “The floors have been levelled, walls plumbed and the entire building has been stabilized,” Clapp said. “The cellar has been excavated and is ready for plumbing and a concrete slab. The design of the ballroom is complete and the restaurant and first and second floors are scheduled for a June completion.”

The Landon House and Silk Mill Restaurant is scheduling future events now. Look for new signs in the near future, complete with a rendering of the finished project. For more information, visit


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