Biz Buzz: Dubuque bicycle shop opens at new location; home decor store to open in Galena; Galena candy store gets new owner

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Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from across the tri-state area. This edition highlights developments in Dubuque and Galena, Ill.

David Hartig had several concerns when moving his business, Bicycle World, from its longtime location at 1072 Central Ave. to the Millwork District, but the biggest of them was the fear that he would lose some of his most important customers.

“We serve a lot of folks for whom a bicycle is their only means of transportation,” Hartig said. “I wanted this place to feel as welcoming to those folks as the old place did.”

Now, a week into operating out of the new location at Dupaco Voices Building, 1000 Jackson St., Hartig said those fears were unfounded.

Bicycle World’s new location has provided more store space and a more ideal retail location, but, most importantly for Hartig, it also hasn’t lost the welcoming atmosphere that helped the store stay in business for 50 years.

“A lot of those folks that I was worried about came to visit us last week,” Hartig said. “They had big smiles on their faces and were giving congratulations. It was affirming to know that nobody got left behind.”

Hartig was a 10-year employee at Bicycle World before purchasing the business last year from former owner Parrish Marugg.

While the store’s original location had served it well, space was limited, requiring the service bays to be located in the basement, and foot traffic along the roadway had become less prevalent over the years.

The new location consists of about 2,800 square feet, nearly triple the size of the former location.

For Hartig, the new location starts a new chapter for Bicycle World, occupying one of the most walked parts of the community and putting it in a perfect place to accommodate the growing demographic of young professionals looking to get to and from work in a more affordable and sustainable way.

“Young people are focused on sustainable transportation, and I think the bicycle is the epitome of that,” he said.

With the new location, Hartig said Bicycle World will extend its weekday operating hours, closing at 7 p.m. instead of 6 p.m.

Additionally, he also intends to hire an additional seasonal worker this year, bringing the total number of part-time employees up to four.

With the new storefront, Hartig said he plans to continue to grow his business and the local cycling community, all the while keeping the business a place that is welcoming for all bicyclers, novice or veteran, rich or poor.

“I think first and foremost, we want to continue the 50-year legacy that was established before we got here,” Hartig said. “We got to continue that work that we started.”

Galena entrepreneur to open new home décor store

The owner of a clothing store in Galena plans to open a new home décor shop in what formerly was a leather store.

The Hideaway, located at 120 N. Main St., is set to open on May 26 and will offer a variety of items, including vinyl records, plants, prints and more.

Owner Austin Scott said the business will serve as the antithesis to his other business in downtown Galena, The Neighborhood Trading Co.

“The Neighborhood was all about being open and welcoming,” Scott said. “This one is going to be dark and moody. It’s going to have more curated items in the store, a lot of European brands and things that you can’t typically find in Galena and the U.S.”

The store’s location was formerly the home of Galena Leather Co. and was purchased by Scott on April 15.

Scott, who opened The Neighborhood five years ago at the age of 18, said he intends for his stores to provide unique experiences to their customers. The Hideaway will provide a different experience, one he believes will be unique to the area.

Scott said he hopes to eventually hire two to three employees to help manage the store. While he will continue to own The Neighborhood, he said that the two businesses will largely operate separately.

Galena candy store comes under new ownership

Since 1974, Galena’s Kandy Kitchen has satiated the sweet tooth of children and adults with its wide array of homemade treats.

Now, the business at 100 N. Main St. in Galena has come under the new ownership of Andi Deckert, a longtime fan of the store, but the confectionary’s new boss has no intention of changing what made Kandy Kitchen such a staple of downtown Galena.

“All the recipes and all the top-quality ingredients are still the same,” Deckert said. “We’re even keeping the aesthetic and feel of the store the same.”

Deckert, who previously worked for a number of local retail businesses, including managing the former Betty Jane Candies store in Dubuque’s Warren Plaza, said she had been shopping at Galena’s Kandy Kitchen for decades and has always admired the operation and its wide varieties of different chocolates and candies.

When she learned early this year that the store’s current owner, Diane Paxton, wife of the Kandy Kitchen’s now-deceased founder, George Paxton, planned to sell, Deckert quickly made an offer.

“It was hard for Diane to sell the business,” Deckert said. “She ran it with her husband, and I just want to represent the store as it was made by Diane and George.”

Deckert said she initially was taken under apprenticeship by Paxton to learn the ropes of the Kandy Kitchen and its various recipes. On March 13, she officially took over as its new owner.

So far, Deckert said the operation has run smoothly, and she is thankful to be running such a locally revered business.

“It’s almost like a dream come true,” she said. “I never thought I would have an opportunity to be in the situation that I am.”

While she hopes to see the business grow and succeed in the future, Deckert stressed that she has no intention of making any drastic changes to how the Kandy Kitchen operates.

More than anything, she wants the store to remain the same place that locals and tourists alike have come to love and admire for the past 49 years.

“It’s pretty cool to bring your child to the store that still looks the same way as when you were a kid,” Deckert said. “It brings back a lot of memories for a lot of people.”