Smulekoff's final day of business - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Smulekoff's final day of business

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -

On Friday morning, the doors at Smulekoff's Home Store opened to customers for the last time.

"That's the last day I'll open these doors," said Dave Sundburg, employee. "I've been opening them each morning I work. That's what I do.

While employees were working hard, it was a tough day. Several asked us not to show them on camera because they were just too emotional.

At least one manager went out of town. Smulekoff employees had worked there for years.

It's been 60 years for Chuck Welsh because he loves his diligent co-workers and the store's loyal customer base.

"I have a lot of wonderful customers," said Welsh. "That's why you stay at a job this long. Because of what people can do for you and what you can do for them."

It's been 8 years for Sundburg.

"In this store, I'm one of the new guys," said Sundburg.

It's easy to forget that this is the final sale. The holiday spirit in air, Christmas music playing.

It almost seemed like your typical Black Friday sale, until you see the writing on the tags, which read "Going out of business."

As Friday came to an end, the 125-year-old business closed for good.

"I feel like the fiddler on the roof, saying goodbye," said Welsh.

"I think it'll hit me tonight when I lock them for the last time," said Sundburg. "That will probably be the toughest one."

Smulekoff's is holding a two-day auction at the store this weekend, selling any remaining furniture to the highest bidder.

Doors open Saturday at 9 a.m. and Sunday at 11 a.m.

Smulekoff's employees say the store closed because they won't be able to run a furniture store out of that location once the city's flood wall is built behind the building.

The owner looked at options for moving but felt none would work out.



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