A second location for downtown’s Naperville Running Co. has been in the works for while. Customers couldn’t be happier that the second store finally opened at 3416 S. Route 59, suite 116, just south of 95th Street.
“We have had many customers over the years ask about a second location,” says Kris Hartner, owner of Naperville Running Co., which offers apparel and shoes to all kinds of athlete.
Hartner, who is a 20-year resident of Naperville, started looking for a second place to open his shop in 2012.
He says earning store of the year from more than 1,000 entries a second time by Competitor magazine and running-industry trade publication Running Insight only confirmed his desire to expand.
He started looking at opening a second location to his hugely successful downtown Naperville location for a variety of reasons.
“I also wanted to give my great team of employees a challenge; an opportunity to grow their careers,” adds Hartner, who strongly believes in giving his team training and growth opportunities as well as benefits, despite tough health-care premiums in recent months. “We really are like a family.”
Naperville Running Co., or NRC, originally opened at 20 W. Jefferson Ave. in May 2000 and about four years ago moved to its downtown location at 34 W. Jefferson Ave.
Although the south Naperville location is slightly smaller, it will be stocked with the same inventory, and most importantly, will be staffed by all familiar faces rotating between the two stores.
“Everyone here is a runner, recreational or competitive, and although that’s not uncommon for running stores, my team has a huge range of expertise, training, great personalities, and are able to listen to our customers, give advice when needed,” Hartner says.
Having worked for Reebok and Adidas for many years, Hartner also knows how to nurture a thriving relationship with his vendors, coordinating events and being able to work side-by-side.
Hartner knew he wanted to own a running shop soon after he started running in eighth grade, back in Minneapolis.
“I even made my own business cards,” he remembers.
Soon after, he landed a job in a local running store where he worked all through high school, college and grad school, studying biomechanics and specializing in footwear. He has come full circle.
Find information about running events and clinics at www.runningcompany.com.
Apricot Lane fills void
Apricot Lane, a hip women’s clothing franchise, opened Nov. 29 at 140 W. Jefferson Ave.
Part-owner Abbie Miller also doubles as store manager, and has been thrilled at the opportunity to lead one of the few Illinois locations. Her parents also are co-owners.
Apricot Lane, a retail boutique, offers a selection of trendy celebrity-inspired clothing. Maxi skirts are a big hit this season.
“But (I) also expect a lot of early ’90s revival,” says Miller, also the clothing buyer for the location.
Miller says she was drawn to the company, founded in 2007 in California, for several reasons, but also because of their involvement in giving back to victims of sex trafficking.
Apricot Lane in downtown Naperville, filling part of the location left empty after Ann Taylor shut down last year, offers a select amount of affordable yet quality clothing, accessories and jewelry.
“People may think we cater to the younger shopper, but we have something for everyone,” says Miller, highlighting the boutique style and high turnover of items.
Dinner service closed
Without much ado, Simply Homemade, a meal preparation service with daily and monthly plans, closed awhile ago.
Both the Naperville location, 5024 Ace Lane, suite 104, and the Wheaton location, 1141 E. Butterfield Road, have closed. The Naperville website has been shut down and gives no reason for closing. The phone number has been disconnected, and emails have remained unanswered.
Know of a business coming to or leaving Naperville? Contact Daina Saleh at email@example.com.