DIXON – Downtown Sports, a longtime retail staple in town, will close before the end of the year.
Owner Colleen Clausen has decided to retire. Her husband, Ken – who had been a master trooper with Illinois State Police District 15 for 30 years – opened the store in 1993. He died in January.
Colleen has been running the store with her son, Greg Clausen, and daughter, Kim Deery.
Clausen was a registered nurse for 20 years before the family business was launched, so she said she’s ready to switch gears. She plans to travel and spend time with her four grandchildren.
“This was my husband’s store, and before he passed away, he told me he wanted me to do the things we couldn’t do together,” Clausen said. “It’s time for me to travel and see the world.”
The clothing store specializes in school sports apparel, screen printing, custom embroidery, work uniforms and seasonal sporting goods.
Downtown Sports, at 1202 S. Galena Ave., is the Sauk Valley’s largest commercial embroidery store.
Clausen said the family is considering running the business exclusively online.
“We’re getting to a point where brick-and-mortar stores will be a thing of the past,” Clausen said. “We’ve seen a lot of changes over the years, but we’ve done a good job of changing with them and staying productive.”
Regardless of what is decided about setting up an online store, Colleen will leave the business in someone else’s hands.
“I really appreciate our customers’ support for the last 25 years, and I’ll miss them, but it’s my time now,” Clausen said.
The store has cut prices by 35 percent in an effort to get merchandise out the door. Each week, an additional 5 percent will be taken off the sale prices.
Christmas orders will still be filled, but Clausen needs them no later than Dec. 1. Downtown Sports can be reached at 815-284-2255.