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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from across the tri-states. This edition highlights developments in Dubuque and New Vienna, Iowa, as well as Potosi, Wis.
An Iowa-based company has acquired a trampoline park in Dubuque.
Edwards Entertainment Company officially acquired Vertical Jump Park located in Kennedy Mall, 555 John F. Kennedy Road, earlier this month. The space is now known as The Fun Station Dubuque.
“Dubuque has been on our radar for a while,” said Nick Edwards, president and CEO of Edwards Entertainment Company. “We’ve been looking for the perfect location. The opportunity that came about was with the previous owners with Vertical. It’s a good fit for us to come into an existing business that has been established and put a Fun Station twist on everything.”
Edwards Entertainment Company operates two other The Fun Station locations, one in Cedar Rapids and one in the Quad Cities.
Edwards said rebranding to The Fun Station Dubuque, as well as adding new activities for all ages, will take place over the next several months, though he stressed the space will remain open throughout the transition.
“We’re still going to have all the trampoline attractions,” he added. “We’re reconfiguring some of the trampoline areas.”
Other The Fun Station activities coming to the space this fall and winter include a “play maze,” which Edwards said are signature features at their other locations. The multi-level maze features slides and interactive elements.
Other activities that will be added include an indoor zipline, trapeze swings and “slick slides,” which Edwards described as “water slides without the water.”
Two changes have already taken place in the space. Edwards said the Box Car Cafe, a quick-serve restaurant featuring over 55 menu items, including appetizers, pizzas, flatbreads, burgers, quesadillas and desserts, is open for business.
The Fun Station Dubuque also changed the pricing model. Instead of paying by the hour, Edwards said families can pay one price per day, with the ability to leave and come back for more play.
“We’re really excited about being in Dubuque and the entire tri-state area,” Edwards said. “Our company is all about providing good, old-fashioned family fun, and we’re excited to be here in the region.”
Kennedy Mall spokesman Joe Bell said Vertical Jump Park, which opened in 2016, has been a great attraction to the mall, and he is excited to see what Edwards will do with the space.
“We think it’s going to be tremendously popular,” Bell said.
The Fun Station Dubuque is open from noon to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday. More information can be found online at gofunstation.com.
Potosi business moving into storefront
A Potosi business selling a wide variety of handmade items is getting its own storefront.
Alesha Kelly, owner of Tennyson Treasures, recently bought the property at 100 N. Main St. in Potosi, next to Twisted Vines Pub and Eatery. The building previously housed Sedgwick Realty.
“The community support has just been wonderful,” Kelly said. “I’m looking forward to collaborating with the other businesses and doing sales for the entire strip (of businesses) there and being part of the nice, small-town feel.”
Kelly said she started Tennyson Treasures about four years ago as a creative outlet. She makes homemade home décor and other items, including wreaths, key chains, soap, candles and greeting cards.
“For anything out there, I think, ‘Oh, I can give it a try,’” Kelly said.
Kelly rented a space in Potosi during her first year of selling her items, but she has been operating out of her garage for the past three years. She said she “jumped” at the chance to get the new storefront once she heard the space was available.
Kelly hopes to be open within the next three weeks in the new space and plans to eventually restore the space, including exposing its hardwood floors and original ceiling.
“I’m looking forward to the business growing and just bringing more people to a small town,” she added. “We have a lot of great things in the town of Potosi. It’s a great town to live in. I love to see the community grow and be prosperous.”
Updates on Tennyson Treasures’ move into the new storefront can be found at facebook.com/TennysonTreasures.
Dubuque County restaurant gets new name, owner
A New Vienna restaurant and bar is operating under a new name and owner.
TJ Shooters opened six weeks ago at 1992 Main St., near the New Vienna Fire Department and Community Hall, and is owned by Tyler Demmer. The space previously was named Downtown Lounge and operated by Demmer’s uncle, Dan Pasker.
“I was looking for a house, and my uncle was selling the restaurant,” Demmer said. “I thought, ‘Why buy a house and spend money when I can buy a restaurant and make money?’”
Demmer said the restaurant’s menu was kept largely the same as it was when it was the Downtown Lounge and still includes sandwiches and burgers.
However, Demmer — who previously worked at Chad’s Pizza in Dyersville — added pizza to the menu. Demmer makes his own homemade pizza dough, which can be topped with typical pizza toppings such as pepperoni, Italian sausage and bacon.
“Most people love the pizza,” Demmer said, adding that having pizzas means he can feed more people with a single item instead of cooking each person an individual item.
Demmer also had the front of the business remodeled prior to opening, updated the dining room and bar area and purchased new restaurant equipment.
“I wanted to run a restaurant, but maybe not this soon,” he said. “I’m only 21. I wanted to do it when I was 26, when I’m older. But this came up. My uncle was retiring and shutting the place down one way or another, and I like (running the business).”
TJ Shooters is open 11 a.m. to close Tuesday through Saturday. The kitchen closes at 9 p.m. The eatery can be reached at 563-921-3463 and found on Facebook.