Town & Country

April 2014

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C M Y K 6 WINNIPEg FREE PRESS, SATURDAY APRIL 26, 2014 B O I S S E V A I N VisitKILLARNEY THERE'SNOBETTERPLACE! DON'T MISS THESE UPCOMING EVENTS: • May 9–RIPPIN' & ROARIN' BULL RIDING • June 7–TOWN WIDE YARD SALE • June 15–VINTAGE CAR SHOW • June 27& 28–SUMMER BLAST & FAIR DAYS • July 1–CANADADAYFIREWORKS & CELEBRATION • July 12& 13–PRAIRIE PIONEER DAYS • July 18& 19–BEACH FESTIVAL • Aug. 2–KILLARNEY HARVESTANTIQUE AUCTION SALE • Aug. 2& 3,9& 10–LITTLE IRISH DOWNS HARNESS RACING • Aug29& 30–SIDEWALKSALEDAYS Formore information,logon VISIT TREHERNE! HomeoftheRunfor theHillsMarathon heldannuallyin September. SituatedinthescenicTigerHills,Treherne offersawidevarietyofshops,activitiesand touristattractionsincluding: *AquaticCentrewithnewaquaclimbwall *FullserviceCampground *NineholeGolfCourse *WalkingTrails*Museum *GlassBottleBuildings We'llbetherewhenyouneedusmost. For top-notch home and personal property coverage, backed by top-notch claims service, get the ResidentialPropackagefromPortageMutualInsurance. 1200 LORNE AVENUE EAST PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE, MB PHONE (204) 857-7871 FAX - (204) 857-3882 YOUMIGHTBEMORE THANJUSTTIRED. 80%ofsleepapneasufferers goundiagnosed.RANAcanhelp. 18665WAKEUP (592-5387) KEN&WAYNEPRINGLE CHAIN STORE PRICES, FAMILY STORE SERVICE Pringle's SPORTS Excellence 364SouthRailwaySt.Box850•Boissevain(MB)R0K0E0 Phone:(204)534-6280•Fax:(204)534-7134 Checkoutourlocalhandmadegifts! Visitthe HERITAGE Art Gallery Hamiota,MB. OPENMON-WED-FRI 1-4P.M. SUMMER SUMMER TEAS Thurs2-4 (June-Sept) CHANGEA LIFE SENDAN INNERCITY KIDTOCAMP KIDTOCAMP 204-582-8779 MAKEYOURDONATIONTODAY. ICYAhasprovided HOPETOTHE COREsince1986. The difference one summer can maketoan underprivilegedchild is enormous. Just $500 will send a child to camp for one week. "Atcamp… "Atcamp… Ihadachance tobeme." Camp…buildsself-esteem, character,leadersand community. P ringle's Men's Wear has outlasted the competition by offering friendly, expert customer care and providing unique products and services that are a cut above. The business was launched in 1894 in the home of Alex Welch, who sold men's shoes and boots and operated a repair service in a back room. Welch soon expanded to include men's clothing and moved to a small building on Main Street. He enlarged the store in 1916, and his son Jim and Campbell Dow became partners in 1920. Del and Wayne Pringle bought the business from Jim Welch and Campbell Dow in 1963, thanks to an old-fashioned method of crowd sourcing. "We went through the local phone book underlining the names of people we felt might have sufficient disposable income to finance our enterprise," says Wayne Pringle, who is now co- owner with his son Ken. To the Pringles' delight, the plan worked. People contributed enough cash to buy out Welch and Dow within hours. "We paid them back with interest within 10 years," Wayne says. Having firmly established that the Pringle name was one to be trusted, the store operated in the same location until 2000, when it moved to larger premises on South Railway Street. Today, it has two names: Pringle's Men's Wear and Pringle's Sports Excellence, the latter reflecting an expansion into sports equipment that has boosted the bottom line. "Older customers still refer to us by our original name; however, the sign across the front of our store is now Pringle's Sports Excellence," says Wayne, who still works a four-day week, starting at 8 a.m. sharp and ending when the last customer has left the store. He and Del bought the Sports Excellence franchise when it became obvious that selling only suits and men's and women's shoes was not going to cut it in the ever-changing marketplace. Ken began working at the store when he was 18, purchasing his uncle Del's shares about 25 years ago. "I knew it was my destiny to continue in the family business," he says. "I was never pushed into the role. I just loved the store." After 31 years, Ken still gets up in the morning looking forward to a day at the office, even though it may last 10 or more hours. He has two sons, Jay, 16, and Thiessen, 13, both of whom play baseball and hockey and are knowledgeable about the sports equipment sold at the store. "Jay will work in the store full-time this summer to put some money in his jeans and to see if he enjoys being a salesman," Ken says, adding that there's no pressure for his son to become a third- generation owner. Along with sports equipment, uniforms and trophies, the Pringles sell several lines of men's and women's athletic shoes. They also repair hockey sticks. It's a unique service and Wayne says they can't keep up with demand for repairs that cost about $30. "If you pay $200 to $300 for a stick and the shaft or blade breaks, it's worth fixing," Wayne says. The father-and-son duo also sell, sharpen and custom fit top-of-the-line skates. "A kid who spends $100 or more on a pair of skates will get a 50% discount from us when he trades them in on a new set the next year," Wayne says. Used skates, goalie pads and other equipment in good condition can be purchased at a discount. Unsold items are donated to the community. Most of the store's clothing now consists of leisure and sportswear by Columbia and other well-known suppliers. But the Pringles still rent tuxedos and suits, and they sell off-the-rack men's suits, in black only. The cost of a suit includes alterations, an Arrow shirt and a name- brand tie for under $300. "Sometimes, if he plans to wear a suit more than once, it's less expensive for a young man to buy the suit, shirt and tie combination than rent it just for graduation," Wayne says. The store employs about eight full and part- time staff and the business continues to grow, thanks to a pool of happy customers that extends to Killarney, Deloraine, Souris and Wawanesa. Wayne's credo is to never allow an unhappy client to leave the store, even if it costs the business money to make him or her smile. "Satisfied clients will return — unsatisfied clients will never return, and may spread a bad word about your business," he says. "We depend mostly on word of mouth to advertise, so it is in our interest to keep the public happy." ❙ Pringle's keeps pace with the times in Boissevain By David Square For the Free Press First-rate service is just one of the secrets to a 100-year-old Boissevain store's success. A century of Service Men at Work: Wayne Pringle (left), his son Ken Pringle and Ken's son Jay Pringle. photo by Christie Smith, Boissevain Recorder

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