Hearth Insight
May 2020
Member Spotlight:
VBS Heating Products, LLC
By Connie & Mark, Owners
Company Name:
VBS Heating Products LLC
Company Birthdate/Year: 
Summer 1999
NWHPBA Member Type:
Size of store/showroom sq feet:
Building is 3,200 sq. ft., showroom is 1,800 sq. ft.
Number of employees/installers/service techs/sales/sweep:
Mark and I both are employees and we have one technician/installer.
  • What do you do to separate your business from others? We only carry quality products from proven manufacturers.
  • What diversifies your business, product wise? We carry Big Green Egg and are currently looking at wood fired sauna stoves.
  • What are customers telling you when they come in the shop? We hear things like “So glad you are here”, “Beautiful showroom”, “I love these stoves”.
  • What trends do you see the next year? Loaded question with the ramifications of COVID-19. What we have already seen is more people wanting to be prepared for anything; most Alaskans are, but things are being taken very seriously now. Our business is down, but this is generally the slow time so hard to tell just yet what the future holds.
  • How long have you been in the hearth business? Since 1999
  • What got you started in hearth business? Mark was a placer miner for 20 years in the Seward Peninsula, way up in Northern Alaska. He was tired of it and wanted to stay home, so he started it as a hobby basically, selling DeVille Oil Drip, Scan wood stoves and Monitors or whatever we could get from Lucky Distributing back then. Within five years the business took off and we brought in more products like Blaze King and Jotul . By 2007, it got crazy so I resigned from my full time job to work the business full time instead of when I could and keeping books from home.
  • What has kept you in the hearth business?  Good income, helping our community with their heating needs, great customers and fantastic sales reps.
  • Why are you a member of NWHPBA? Information, and all the benefits that go with being a member. We like how we are kept informed of government agency actions and so many other aspects of our industry.
  • Have you attended NWHPBA/HPBA Events? If so… what is your favorite part about them? We have attended EXPOs. We’d have to say favorite parts would be networking with other dealers and manufacturers, seeing what’s new and checking out towns we have never been to before.
  • What’s your favorite NWHPBA memory? We have had some great times at EXPOs. The big dinner get together Jotul hosted in Salt Lake in 2011 was a blast. New Orleans was a real treat.
  • What’s your favorite movie? Mark: Master and Commander, Connie: Dances with Wolves
  • First car? Mark: 1974 Chevy Station Wagon, Connie: Sixties Chevy Nova
  • First concert? Mark: Eric Burton & War, Connie: ZZ Top
NWHPBA New Board Members
NWHPBA would like to welcome Kelli Cruz (W WA) & Chris Patterson (Idaho)
to our NWHPBA Board!
Hello! I am Kelli Cruz, Owner/CEO of Cascade Fire Solutions located in Puyallup, WA.

I have been in the hearth industry for about 13 years. I am extremely excited to be serving on the board of NWHPBA and look forward to networking with others in the industry. I am very connected to the Pacific Northwest as I was born and raised here.

In addition to fire, I love coffee, reading books and hiking with my border collie Zoey.  
Call for Involvement
Are you interested in joining NWHPBA's Board of Directors or getting involved on a committee? Do you have a great employee who would like to get more involved?

We have a number of opportunities for involvement, from providing content for social media and newsletters to helping us plan our Annual Meeting, to participating on the Board. We appreciate any time you can offer to help our association grow! 

Open Board of Director Positions:
  • Western Washington
  • At Large
  • Idaho

Open Committee Positions:
  • Government Affairs Committee Volunteer
  • Membership Committee Volunteer
  • Education & Communications Committee Volunteer
  • Annual Meeting Committee Volunteer
We want to hear from you!!!
The NWHPBA Communications Committee publishes the Hearth Insight monthly. If you have a story or article you would like to have shared, please email us to be included in our upcoming editions!!!
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