ROSSVILLE — After a massive downtown fire in February 2004 took out a huge block of small businesses, Rossville has been struggling to regain a retail district.
Up until late last year, the struggle had been frustratingly slow for many Rossville residents.
In December 2006, a new Casey’s General Store was constructed on the site where the downtown fire had wiped out many small businesses. Late last year, a new Dollar General store opened at the south end of the village.
Gowns for less
In November, Sherry Decker purchased the building at 129 S. Chicago St. and opened Twisted Sister.
“My first thought when I opened the shop was to be able to provide formal gowns and dresses for young girls and women that couldn’t afford them,” Decker said. “Having grown up in a family of eight girls, I knew the cost of these dresses and how some people couldn’t afford them.”
So Decker put the word out and soon the dresses started coming in.
“People were great. They would bring them and just donate them and a lot of them were in great shape,” Decker said.
So far, Decker has been able to provide 220 formals to girls and women for proms, weddings, recitals and farewell events. But that is just the start of Decker’s business venture.
“I started getting in gently used clothing, home furnishings and antiques,” she said. “People really began asking for used furniture.”
With her gently used dresses and clothing filling up the first building, Decker negotiated the purchase of the next two buildings north of her original building. She purchased those two buildings in February and was able to move in July.
“The addition of these two buildings allowed me to display my furniture and antiques better,” Decker said.
In the beginning, Decker went to auctions to find quality home furnishings for resale, but she soon had people bringing items to her.