Well-known antique mall plans to close

April  23, 2014

      After 44 years, a well-known eastern Iowa company is planning to close. Today, The Banowetz Antique Mall in Maquoketa announced it will close by the end of the summer. Co-owner Kathy Banowetz says she and her husband Virl want to devote more time to their family.

      She and Virl began selling antiques from their basement and garage before opening Banowetz Antiques in 1970. Their business grew quickly and eventually moved to a vacant Pamida store, where it's been ever since.

      "If somebody was looking for a round oak table, you probably could've chosen from 50 different ones. or if they were looking for a marble table, maybe 15 or 20 marble top tables. maybe we'd have for our 5 bedroom sets on hand. we always had a lot of quantity. we probably had one time we'd probably have hundreds of lamps."  

      Banowetz says at its height, the business employed 30 people and featured antiques from 150 dealers.  She believes their reputation for quality antiques extended beyond Maquoketa and eastern Iowa. 

      "We have shipped to 20 something foreign countries long before the days of the Internet. You know, people that were here traveling from europe or other countries would find us and then buy something and we'd ship it to them. When you talk about a tourist attraction, we have brought people into this community from all of the country. So it's been a really wonderful journey and adventure."  

      The Banowetz Antique Mall is currently located in Maquoketa, just off Highway 61. Kathy Banowetz says they plan to close at the end of the summer, but will keep their bed & breakfast open. 

 

(Photo courtesy of the Banowetz Antique Mall).