BATAVIA – Kiss The Sky record store will continue to be part of downtown Batavia for at least another year.
The store, located at 180 First St. next to Water Street Studios, recently extended its lease with landlord Batavia Enterprises for another year. It has been at its current location since July 2012, after moving from its previous site at the corner of Third and State streets in downtown Geneva, its home for about six years.
Prior to that, the shop spent a decade on Randall Road in Batavia. Steve Warrenfeltz, who started Kiss The Sky with Mike Messerschmidt, had flirted with the idea of moving the store to be near the Fox Valley Music Foundation’s new live music venue, The Venue, which recently opened at 21 S. Broadway Ave. (Route 25) in downtown Aurora. Warrenfeltz is president of the Fox Valley Music Foundation Board.
Warrenfeltz had considered the move as a way to create synergy with The Venue.
“I saw that as a really good thing for both entities – The Venue and Kiss The Sky,” he said.
In addition, the move would have made commuting to work more convenient for Warrenfeltz, who lives in Aurora.
“It was kind of interesting to me to be able to basically ride my bicycle to work and to be that close where I could do that,” he said. “That was sort of inviting and enticing. But the real reason was for the synergistic potential between the two entities.”
Warrenfeltz was eyeing a space near The Venue as a new home for Kiss The Sky. But the timing didn’t work out.
“It was just taking so long and I had to make some decisions about what to do with my current store, if it was going to take longer than we had originally planned,” he said.
Warrenfeltz said he intends to hold an event at the shop soon to celebrate the fact that Kiss The Sky will be staying in its current space for the foreseeable future.
“We’re going to play it year by year,” he said. “I’m at that age where I think that’s what I should be doing. My daughter had twin girls on Monday and being a grandfather for the first time and looking at those little ones kind of makes you think about things a little bit differently. Family is real important and I want to be able to spend more time with the family. I’ve sacrificed a lot of family time over the years owning my own business.”
Messerschmidt plans to continue working at the store, although he will cut back his hours.
“He’s going to stay here for a couple of days a week,” Warrenfeltz said. “He’ll be part time. He too has grandchildren that he wants to spend more time with. We’re both 67 years old and we’ve worked like ever since we were 15, so we’re feeling the need to kind of wind it down a little bit.”