Do you have an interesting story or news tip to share about a local business? Ideas can be shared with business editor Jeff Montgomery by calling 563-588-5753 or by emailing email@example.com.
Biz Buzz shares business tidbits from the tri-state area. In this week’s edition, we include updates from Dubuque and Galena, Ill.
For the Goedken family, it is almost impossible to envision life without dance.
Tracy Goedken said her three daughters all are avid dancers. Her husband, Marty, is a staunch supporter of the daughters’ dancing prowess and their lone son, Peyton, is known to set up stage props to support the girls’ performances.
“It is definitely a family affair,” she said with a laugh. “We’d kind of be lost without it. Occasionally, you question all the time and money and effort you put into it. But when you see the end result and your kids accomplish their goals, it is all worth it.”
The Goedken family leaned further into the world of dance in August, when the family took ownership of Xtreme Dance studio in Dubuque.
The purchase represented a new chapter in a relationship that extends back for almost a decade, when the Goedkens’ eldest daughter, Kylie, began taking lessons at Xtreme. She quickly developed a relationship with the studio’s previous owner, Tessa Medinger, who helped shift Kylie’s passion for dance into a new gear.
“Dance has always been my happy place,” Kylie said. “When I joined Xtreme, I started thinking about it differently. I thought this is something I want to do for the rest of my life.”
When the Goedkens’ caught wind that Medinger was hoping to step away from the longtime business, they worked out a deal to buy it from her.
Kylie, who will be a junior at Loras College next year, currently serves as studio director. She said the studio can help all dancers build their skills and passion for dance, regardless of current skill level.
“We offer classes in recreation all the way up to elite competition team,” she said.
The Xtreme Dance elite competition team, which had 56 team members when the Goedkens took over, has now grown to 74 members. The new owners also launched an “all-star” team known as Iowa Elite Dance that combines the top dancers from around the tri-state area, Tracy Goedken said.
Xtreme Dance studio is located at 1075 Cedar Cross Road and can be reached at 563-213-8776.
NEW AUTO BUSINESS IN DUBUQUE
An experienced local business owner has opened a new venture in Dubuque.
SP Chrome Accessories and Truck Repair opened at 602 Peru Road in mid-May, according to owner Shawn Thomas.
The new business sells chrome parts for trucks and provides a wide range of services for semi-trucks and other large vehicles. He believes his new venture will tap into an unmet local demand, adding that, to his knowledge, there is only one other local business selling chrome parts.
“This is something I’d been thinking about doing for a while,” he said. “I finally decided to go for it and build a new building that had a nice showroom and a shop in it,” he said.
SP Chrome Accessories and Truck Repair marks the third business Thomas has brought to life at 602 Peru Road., joining a construction business and trucking company that also operate on the property.
The new business prompted him to hire additional workers, increasing the collective workforce of the three entities to 15 employees. He said he is actively seeking to hire more workers, including sales staff and mechanics.
Like many industries, the trucking sector has confronted changes related to COVID-19 and subsequent economic shifts. Thomas acknowledged these dynamics — which include supply chain shortages and labor shortfalls — but said the local transportation industry remains strong overall.
“I don’t think it has slowed us down,” he said. “We are extremely busy.”
SP Chrome Accessories and Truck Repair can be reached at 563-239-1004.
GALENA TATTOO SHOP OPENS
A new tattoo studio in Galena aims to give customers a one-of-a-kind experience.
Emerald Buddha Tattoo opened its doors at 123 Bench St. in mid-May.
“Everything we do is custom. We design every tattoo from scratch,” co-owner Ben Johnson said. “With some tattoo places, you go in and pick your tattoo out of a book. We want to make sure you don’t end up walking around with the same tattoo as others.”
Johnson said there are three full-time tattoo artists, one full-time piercer and two full-time apprentices at Emerald Buddha. The group aims to foster a family environment at the business, another quality that Johnson believes helps his studio stand apart from others.
“A lot of tattoo shops have a reputation for not being the friendliest,” he said. “We focus a lot on kindness and customer service here.”
Johnson co-owns Emerald Buddha with Erik Rohner, the latter of whom also owns Ye Old Tattoo Shoppe in Platteville, Wis. Johnson said that Platteville shop is considered a sister location to the Galena one, noting that many workers and clients go back and forth between the two.
A few weeks after opening, Johnson is more excited than ever about the potential of the Galena market. He said Emerald Buddha was open to walk-ins only during its first weekend to make sure staff could focus on local residents who stopped into the facility. Johnson called that weekend a “smashing success” and said it was a great opportunity to connect with the area population.
Galena’s standing as a top tourist destination is also a boon to business, with Johnson noting that many out-of-town customers schedule a tattoo or piercing appointment as part of their multi-day stay in town. He believes his shop will benefit from the new “cannabis tourism” coming to Galena as well.
Emerald Buddha Tattoo is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays, noon to 9 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and noon to 6 p.m. on Sundays. It is closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
The business can be reached at 563-776-0500.