Smoke clears for merchant

Register Reporter


Register/Anne Kazmierczak
Crystal Moore and Glenn Coffield are happy to be back at work at Town and Country clothing store on the Iola square. The store at 17 E. Madison was closed for three weeks due to smoke damage after a fire wracked an apartment at 9 E. Madison on the night of Sept. 25.

It’s pretty much business as usual again at Town and Country clothing store on the Iola square, said owner Glenn Coffield.
The store, at 17 E. Madison, was shuttered due to smoke damage for three weeks after a fire gutted an upstairs apartment at 9 E. Madison on Sept. 25.
The store, which sells Western and casual wear, remained closed while Superior Restoration Services of Wichita dealt with the aftereffects of the fire. The company cleaned the store’s walls, counters, carpets and ceiling, Coffield said.
“We didn’t get any water or fire damage, all we got was smoke,” Coffield said. “By the time they got through cleaning and air scrubbing and everything else they did, you can’t smell it.”
Even though damage in the store was just from smoke, Town and Country Western and Casual Wear was closed much longer than its neighbors.
“That’s because we have hanging products,” Coffield said. Smoke flowed freely among the garments, boots and hats that fill the retail space. Two neighboring businesses are salons which have more impermeable surfaces, allowing for a speedier turnaround after the fire.
The reclamation company did such a good job that most people, Coffield’s wife included, cannot smell any smoke on the merchandise, he said. And, “the boots in boxes and the hats in boxes they said were not damaged,” he said of his insurance company’s evaluation.
Nonetheless, everything in the store at the time of the fire now has to be sold off at a discount, Coffield said.
“I have to get rid of all the merchandise that was here, according to my insurance company,” he said. The smoke exposure was enough to declare the products “damaged” according to insurance standards, he said.
As result, jeans shirts, boots and hats that were on shelves or hangers at the time of the fire are all reduced in price. Newly added merchandise is on sale, too, Coffield said.
Coffield reopened the store Oct. 17, for Farm-City Days. Before that, “I had a lot of customers talking to me before I reopened telling me I better hurry up,” Coffield said. Such customers have been coming in “to buy their favorite boots whether those boots are on sale or not,” he said.
In his 30 years on Madison Avenue, Coffield said he’s never had an experience like this one.
Town and Country is open Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Thursdays feature extended hours, until 8 p.m. Saturdays hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.