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Batavia business rolling with handmade garden spinners

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT
(Sandy Bressner – sbressner@shawmedia.com)
Bill and Julie Saloga of Batavia have opened Windmill City Spinners at 13 S. Batavia Ave. The store specializes in metal garden sculptures made by Bill Saloga.

BATAVIA – Batavia resident Bill Saloga has had a hard time keep up with the demand for his handmade garden spinners.

“For the last few years I have been making them and selling them at our garage sales,” Saloga said. “I couldn’t make them fast enough.”

Saloga and his wife, Julie, recently opened a store, Windmill City Spinners & More Decor, which sells the garden spinners as well as other decor. The store is at 13 S. Batavia Ave., Batavia, behind the historic Gammon house.

In opening the store, the couple is following in the footsteps of Bill Saloga’s parents, Vickie and Marc Roth, longtime owners of Cottage Garden Farm, a gift and home decor shop in Waupaca, Wis. Saloga and his dad have developed an aerodynamic and bearing technology coupled with a balancing procedure that allows the garden spinner to work with wind speeds as low as 2 miles per hour.

As a result, half of the blades go clockwise and the other half go counter-clockwise, creating a kaleidoscope effect.

“It’s a relaxing thing to look at,” said Saloga, a carpenter by trade. “I call them yard art. They spin as fast as the wind blows.”

It takes Saloga six hours from start to finish to make a garden spinner. For the smaller garden spinners, he bends the blades by hand. The garden spinners are made of steel with a copper alloy.

Those driving near the corner of Batavia Avenue (Route 31) and Wilson Street can see the garden spinners in action in front of the Gammon house. It is an appropriate location – Batavia once was known as the windmill capital of the world for being home to six windmill factories.

“Business is going well,” Julie Saloga said.

Information is available by calling the store at 630-406-6801.

Know more

Want to know more about Windmill City Spinners & More Decor? Visit the store’s Facebook page or call 630-406-6801.

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