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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from around the tri-states each Tuesday. This week, we highlight developments from Dubuque; The Galena Territory, Ill.; and Maquoketa, Iowa.
A local cleaning business with a military-inspired mindset is continuing to build upon its reputation and customer base in the Dubuque area.
Military Maid was launched in 2015 by Justyn Husemann, a Dubuque resident who spent a decade in the U.S. military, including three deployments overseas. In 2012, shortly after returning home, Husemann landed a job as a custodian for Dubuque Community Schools.
“Some of the teachers began to notice the way I cleaned and the attention to detail,” Husemann recalled. “I think a lot of that comes from the military. When you are cleaning the barracks, you better not miss a spot.”
The praise from teachers inspired Husemann to launch Military Maid, a custom, residential home-cleaning business, about six years ago. A small group of teachers and their friends served as his early clients, but the business has continued to grow over the years.
Today, Military Maid has four employees and cleans about 150 area homes on a regular basis, in addition to working with a handful of commercial clients.
Vanessa Husemann, who married Justyn earlier this year, long has been an integral part of the business. She was working at an area child care center and dating Justyn when he launched the business.
About four years ago, Vanessa began working at Military Maid full time and now is a co-owner. Justyn said she was a key contributor long before that title became official.
“She has been a huge part of this from the very start and has helped motivate me along the way,” Justyn said.
All of the employees at Military Maid have either served in the U.S. military or have family members with extensive military experience.
The business serves clients within a 20-mile radius of downtown Dubuque. It can be reached at 563-580-5435.
GALENA RESORT CONTINUES GROWTH
A resort in The Galena Territory has commenced work on a new spa.
Mark Klausner, the owner of Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa, said crews recently broke ground on a new amenity that will be known as Stonedrift Spa. The facility will feature 13 treatment rooms, 11 salon stations, a hair salon, men’s services, yoga classes, therabody treatments and more.
“The whole purpose is to create a wellness destination,” he said.
Klausner said Stonedrift Spa likely will open in the summer of 2022. Both Eagle Ridge guests and members of the public will be able to access its services.
To create the new facility, crews will conduct an expansion on the former general store building on the Eagle Ridge campus, which currently spans about 3,000 square feet. Once the expansion is complete, the revamped facility will be around 9,000 square feet, Klausner said.
That will be roughly twice the spa space currently available at the inn. That spa space will continue to be used until the new facility is complete.
Klausner said the creation of Stonedrift Spa will lead to the addition of about 20 new jobs.
This project is part of a broader effort to renovate Eagle Ridge. These multifaceted efforts already have included improvements to the restaurants, pro shop, country store and other portions of the resort.
“Our goal is to be the best resort in the Midwest,” Klausner said.
Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa can be reached at 815-777-5000.
APPLIANCE STORE CHANGES HANDS
A new family has taken ownership of a business that has been a mainstay in Maquoketa for more than 40 years.
Ryan and Ashley Prull took the reins at Mayberry Home Appliance Center in the fall of 2020 and changed its name to Appliance Solutions. The business had been owned by Sue Mayberry and her husband, Jim, since the spring of 1980.
The two families were well acquainted before the business changed hands.
Ashley Prull explained that she and her husband, Ryan, launched Appliance Solutions in 2015. For five years, the business exclusively focused on servicing appliances. Along the way, they struck a deal to provide service for appliances sold at the Mayberry business.
When the Mayberrys decided to sell their appliance business, their thoughts quickly turned to the Prull family.
“(My husband and I) are both lifelong Maquoketa residents, and we thought it was important for Maquoketa to retain an appliance store,” Sue explained. “We thought it was a good time to sell, and (the Prulls) seemed like a perfect fit for the business.”
Appliance Solutions sells a variety of kitchen and laundry appliances, including products from KitchenAid, Maytag, Whirlpool and Amana. It continues to service appliances as well.
With the purchase, Prull believes she and her husband are keeping an important business alive and well in Maquoketa.
“What sets us apart from other appliance stores is you can really get a one-on-one experience here,” she said. “We can help you pick something out, and, after the purchase is made, you know we will provide service and take care of you.”
Prull acknowledged that taking over the business in the heart of the COVID-19 pandemic posed challenges and opportunities. Demand for household appliances has continued to be high, but getting new products into the store was challenging amid supply-chain issues.
Recently, she said, those issues have been ironed out, and delay times have decreased.
Appliance Solutions is located at 117 S. Second St. and can be reached at 563-652-6577. It is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays.