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Farewell to South Milwaukee Carpets

May 9, 2014

Farewell to SM Carpets and Vinyl

Thirty-eight years ago in February 1976, Gary and Bonnee Lugauer moved their carpet business from West Allis to their current location at 1007 Milwaukee Avenue. They opened their doors and their floors as South Milwaukee Carpet and Vinyl. The family, which eventually included two sons, Gordon and Steven, has lived above the store all these years. In 1979, when a fire destroyed the inside of the former Garden Theater next door, the theater building was annexed to the carpet store to provide a warehouse and a supplementary showroom. The expansion allowed the family business to offer additional flooring commodities such as a wide selection of first quality remnants and full rolls ( no "seconds" or damaged items), laminate and luxury vinyl tile as while as an array of floor care products. The expansion also permitted a wonderful, creative space for the boys and their friends. The projection room of the theater served many purposes over the years: a play room, a sewing room, Gordon's bedroom, a percussion studio. Many grand memories.

SM Caret and Vinyl always has provided experienced and guaranteed installation and repair for all products sold by the store as well as how-to advice for the store's do-it-yourself customers. The customer base primarily has been residential home owners, apartment owners and local businesses. Yet even when customers moved "up North", they returned to SM Carpets for their flooring needs. Children and grandchildren of customers continue to purchase from SM Carpets.

Now Bonnee and Gary are retiring from daily business life. They will enjoy their grandchildren. Gary will play bluegrass music and bowl. Bonnee will sail and play Irish music. During their Retirement Celebration Sale, all merchandise in the store is offered at going-out-of-business prices. Expert installation will continue to be available. Open store hours are limited, but individual appointments readily can be arranged. Call South Milwaukee Carpets and Vinyl at (414) 762-1350.

We have enjoyed serving the community for four decades. Thank you to everyone who has supported us.

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