On May 4, 2007 an F-5 tornado struck Greensburg, Kansas destroying 90% of the community. For Scott and Susan Reinecke, this devastating storm provided them an opportunity to restart their lives, begin new careers, and pursue their dream.
As Scott, the owner and operator of the local body shop, took inventory one day he realized that this career was taking a toll on his health and felt he wouldn’t have many years left to devote to this endeavor. Reinecke had always dreamed of a career in building and repairing stained glass windows and designing stained glass pieces. His wife Susan, owner of an antique store, had the passion to design slumped glass and glass jewelry.
The tragedy that their community had endured along with Scott’s realization began what became their journey from dream to reality.
The Reineckes sought out the Kansas Small Business Development Center (KSBDC) outreach center in Hutchinson. When they first approached the KSBDC their two concerns were financing and marketing. They knew two things. One that Greensburg was not large enough to support this type of industry. And two, since the town was destroyed it would be a challenge to find an affordable location.
Working with KSBDC consultant Mark Buckley, the Reineckes developed their financial projections. Buckley traveled with the Reineckes to the Kansas City Gift Mart helping them with their initial inventory purchase. He worked with them to secure a temporary studio through the City of Greensburg.
In May of 2009, two years after a tornado destroyed the city of Greensburg, the city opened a LEED Platinum retail business incubator and Studio 54 became one of the first occupants.
During their startup phase Studio 54 exceeded all sales expectations. Many supplied lines had to be reordered numerous times. As the business continued to grow the Reineckes realized that the 792 square foot site in the incubator was not large enough to accommodate their sales. On May 1, 2010 Studio 54 moved directly across the street from the incubator to its current location to a 1,600 square foot space at 106 South Main.
National publicity has helped increase the store’s customer base. Studio 54 has been featured on the Green Channel’s Project Greensburg television show, and Susan has been interviewed by numerous magazines and newspapers.
When asked to divulge their secret to success, the Reineckes shared, “Hard work, follow your dream, be fair, be honest and do something you are good at doing.”
Learn more 620-723-2511
Assisted by Mark Buckley, KSBDC Consultant | KSBDC at GCCC | 620.276.9632 | swksbdc.com | email@example.com
Represented by Senator Pat Roberts | Senator Jerry Moran | Fed. Dist. #4 – Mike Pompeo | State Sen. Dist.#33 – Mitch Holmes | State Rep. Dist.#117 – John Ewy