Furniture store activity has been hectic in Kootenai County recently, with openings, closures and expansions.
Another major change is due soon as Walkers’ Furniture will fill the nearly 15,000 square feet being vacated by Frick’s Furniture at 7224 Government Way in Dalton Gardens. Watch for the opening a week from today.
It’s a family deal. Todd Walker and his wife, Robyn Smith, who have guided Frick’s through many years of expansion, have transferred the ownership to Todd’s brother Mark and his wife, Pam. Todd and Robyn plan to operate the new store for a while, then explore opportunities in Africa, a long-time dream.
Mark and Pam have owned Walkers’ Furniture for more than 17 years, during which time the company has changed from a single store specializing in unfinished oak on North Division in Spokane to six regional, full-line stores.
The Walkers have two stores in Spokane and other stores in Wenatchee, Yakima and Kennewick. Mark was raised in Spokane, and Pam is from Everett.
“We sell more furniture than anyone else in Eastern Washington,” Mark said. “Because of our volume, we’re able to offer high quality furniture at warehouse furniture prices. We’re excited to be serving North Idaho. Coeur d’Alene has a great future.”
Mark Walker explained that in the early 1980s, several stores began as unfinished-furniture outlets because that’s what customers wanted.
As the stores expanded, they offered the option of finishing the furniture for customers.
However, eventually the final cost wasn’t much different than buying the finished product in the first place, and it’s definitely less work for the storekeeper.
Walkers’ offers full lines of the top furniture brands in America, Mark Walker said. Chris Taylor is moving from Wenatchee to manage 10-12 employees in the Idaho store. Hours will be 10 to 6 Monday through Thursday and Saturdays, later on Fridays, and noon to 5 Sundays.
Gentry Finance Corp. will open an office in Coeur d’Alene on Nov. 1. The firm specializes in $100-$750 personal loans and helping customers establish credit credentials.
The 18-year-old national company will occupy Suite B (next to the state liquor store) at 1607 Northwest Blvd. in Coeur d’Alene.
The 1,040-square-foot space formerly housed Northwest Mortgage Co. Elissia Roche will move from Boise to manage three employees in Coeur d’Alene.
“We help people who have had financial problems - such as bankruptcy - through the transitional phase back to credibility,” said Scott Bucy, state supervisor for the company.
“Our company saw a need to provide low, unsecured-signature loans to help people establish credit.”
Gentry Finance, headquartered in San Antonio, has 210 offices throughout the nation.
In downtown Coeur d’Alene, Curtis Jasper has purchased Xerographix Northwest in Suite 122 on the middle level of Harbor Plaza, located near Northwest Boulevard.
In the same space for 10 years, the company sells all Xerox products. Xerox, headquartered in Rochester, N.Y., was the inventor of copy machines 55 years ago, Jasper said.
Jasper came to Coeur d’Alene from Walla Walla. He is helped by Mark Vesterby and Les Martin, and said he plans to hire two more people.
Offering a waiting area with families in mind, Mike Cheevers has opened Family Values Barber Styling shop at 3655 Government Way in Coeur d’Alene. The shop is off the road in Commercial Center strip mall across from the Hungry Horseman Restaurant.
Cheevers, who was raised in Hayden and worked 10 years at the Best Avenue Barber Shop, said he offers a comfortable waiting area with a playroom for children. Hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays and 8 to 2 Saturdays. Phone 665-0414.
It’s good to see improvements will be made where Interstate 90 intersects with Northwest Boulevard and passes under Government Way in Coeur d’Alene.
It’s too bad this road is so unattractive until it reaches the eastern edge of town.
One major difference between the Lake City and Spokane is that the freeway through Spokane is landscaped with attractive plants, watered grass and interesting rockwork.
Not exactly inviting to visitors, the traffic trough through Coeur d’Alene is boring and brown with the weeds mowed just low enough to reveal the litter.
, DataTimes The following fields overflowed: CREDIT = Nils Rosdahl The Spokesman-Review