Life Is Not What Happens to You, It’s How You React How I Found My Way to the Laundry Business -Dave Coyle, Team Leader and Owner
I got my first taste of the dry-cleaning business in a college fraternity house. As you probably know, most college kids are very messy, but I was concerned with ensuring that my fraternity brothers looked their best. Everyone wore dress shirts, and since most of my brothers were short on time, I would gather up everyone’s shirts and take them to our local dry cleaners. On the way back, I’d add a 10 percent service fee to the overall cost. Fast-forward several years. I had a daughter, Brie, and was working 60 hours a week at a dry-cleaning business to make ends meet. Then, one day, my daughter’s mother told me she was leaving. She was moving to Pennsylvania, and she said, “I’ve decided to leave Brie with you.” She gave me all of Brie’s belongings, and she was gone. I was 23, and at that moment, I thought it was the end of the world. What was I to do? Life isn’t about what happens to us, but about how we react. From that experience, I was able to gain the perspective that great things come from the calm right after the storm. It’s kind of like taking off in an airplane. You lift off, then suddenly, you’re in the clouds and everything is blurry until you emerge in the sunshine. While caring for my baby daughter was terrifying at the time, in retrospect, it was one of the best things that could’ve ever happened to both of us. I needed to take responsibility and figure out how to care for my daughter. I
worked diligently to learn everything I could about the dry-cleaning industry.
Last month, we had our work Christmas party, complete with a live reindeer, Christmas music, and thousands of lights. It was a family-friendly event, so it was a joy to see our team members with their loved ones. My own family has grown, too. In addition to Brie, I adopted my son, Ethan, who is now 11. Five and a half years ago, I met my wife, Aram, and we now have two beautiful girls together. Our family looks like we all came from somewhere different, and I love it. They’re what give me the most happiness. Just last month, we adopted a goldendoodle, adding another fun, energetic component to our lives. After spending Thanksgiving in Philadelphia visiting Aram’s family, we spent Christmas at home, enjoying a quiet holiday together. Well, not too quiet — with a 4-month-old puppy, a 7-month-old baby, a 3-year-old (“threenager”) and an 11-year-old, there were still plenty of adventures. We decided not to do a turkey, instead grilling some awesome steaks and making it a day of family time. It’s important to Aram and me to instill our kids with the meaning of the season and how important it is to spend time with each other. As the holidays wind down, we’ll be right here, ready to say hi with a smiling face and a freshly pressed bag of laundry.
I was promoted to district manager, and while I was able to make it work, it wasn’t easy. Then, an opportunity came to own my own business. I thought, “You know what? I can do this.” I got the money together and bought the store. It was a fresh start. That was my first store. By 2008, we topped out at 23 after I bought out the Best Cleaners stores that brought me to Wichita in the first place. It’s humbling to know that we’re one of the largest dry-cleaning facilities in the Midwest. My team means everything to me. I depend on them every day. Some of them have been with me since I started the company in 2000. When I purchased Best Cleaners in 2008, Dave Zimmerman was the maintenance technician and driver for the previous owners. I noticed that he was a “fix-it” guy. As we grew, I needed all hands on deck, and Dave (aka “Z”) was always there. He’s become a natural leader. I respect him so much that many of his family members also work with us. His wife, Patty, is our co- production team leader; Tabby, his daughter, runs the wash-and-fold department; and her husband, Marcus, does our night cleaning. They’re a wonderful family, and we are blessed to have all of them as a part of our team, and it all started with Dave.
Happy New Year from our family to yours.
Make Reading a Family Resolution Want to See Better Report Cards in 2018?
Every parent wants to see their child do well in school, and there’s one fun activity that benefits students of all ages: reading. In a world with so much stimulation, however, it can be difficult to motivate kids to put down a screen and pick up a book. New Year’s resolutions are the perfect opportunity to make reading a priority. Here are a few tips to make 2018 the year your kids become bookworms. Make It a Family Resolution There’s no better motivator than solidarity! Plus, we’re guessing everyone in your household could stand to read a little more. You don’t have to read the same books or set identical goals, but it’s a lot more fun when everyone participates. Schedule weekly reading discussions so everyone can share the cool stories they’ve read. Stack your completed books in your house somewhere as a monument to all the knowledge your family has gained. Set Reward Milestones Positive reinforcement will propel your kids to keep reading long after the calendars have turned. For a certain number of books completed or hours spent reading, offer them a prize. You can even create a big end goal to really cement those
reading habits. Better yet, set a combined goal that the entire family can work toward. Don’t be afraid to pull out all the stops. If your kids know that reading one book per week through June means an extra-special summer vacation, their enthusiasm won’t wane come spring. Use Reading Apps Goodreads is a social network for bibliophiles. You can find recommendations, share ratings, and create lists of both completed and to-be-read books. Users also create reading lists based on topic, genre, decade, and more. With over 2 billion books added, you’ll never run out of inspiration. Biblionasium offers the same services, but it’s designed specifically for children. Talk to other parents and create a network of friends and classmates. After all, nothing is cooler to a kid than what their friends are doing. Avid readers tend to do better academically from kindergarten through college. In fact, a study from the Journal of Education and Practice found that reading comprehension predicted success in other subjects more than any other factor. If you want to see improved report cards, make a reading resolution for your entire household.
What People Are Saying “In The Bag consistently comes to our rescue! They make laundry so easy. All we have to do is drop off, pick up, and put away. The affordability and ease of In The Bag allows our family to spend more time with our two little girls, making lasting memories.” –Desi Viner
“Your ladies at Central and Edgemoor are amazing, helpful, and friendly! I really appreciate both of them so much. Thank you to In The Bag Cleaners for your service and promptness!” –Mucci Lamborghini
“I love my dry cleaner! Great, know-you-by-name service. Great owners. Highly recommend. Go to a different location, however, because this is my In The Bag.” –Scott P.
“Your store at Woodlawn and 37th is the BEST. The manager and her support are the best you have. I love the coupons, cookies, and being able to pick up each month’s splurge at my In The Bag Cleaners.” –Kurt Foley
“The manager at Harry and Webb is great! She is always super friendly, knows who I am, and makes my morning brighter every time I stop in. Thank you!” –Jodi Longhurst Slaton
Submit your testimonial: Comments@inthebagcleaners.com
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Keep Wichita Warm Join The Salvation Army, KAKE-TV, and In The Bag Cleaners in the Warm Hearts Campaign
Slow Cooker Raspberry White Hot Chocolate
“I encourage everyone to donate a coat or cold weather item to the Warm Hearts campaign. A warm coat can be life- changing to someone who is struggling.” –Dave Coyle, owner and team Leader, In The Bag Cleaners. The Warm Hearts Campaign has been going on for 10 years. Each year, Dave finds a way to go above and beyond for our community. He sees a need and mobilizes resources to meet it. Dave’s company collaborates with The Salvation Army and KAKE-TV to bring warmth to Wichita, and over 8,000 Last year, Dave Coyle received a desperate call from a school principal. It was 30 degrees outside, and three students had come to school without coats. What did Dave do? He took action. Thanks to coats donated to the Warm Hearts Campaign, he and his team at In The Bag Cleaners cleaned and delivered six of the coats to the elementary school.
coats are collected annually. Thank you, Wichita, for keeping each other warm during the coldest part of the year. “Financial struggles can happen to anyone,” says Dave. “About 70 percent of Americans are three paychecks away from a financial crisis. Many are just an accident or health crisis away from financial struggle. I encourage everyone to show empathy, go to your closet, and donate a coat that you haven’t worn in a year or two. What you no longer want or need can be an absolute treasure for someone else.” To give to the Warm Hearts campaign, bring your unused coats, blankets, sweaters, gloves, and hats to any In The Bag location or the KAKE-TV studios between Jan. 1 and Jan. 31. In The Bag Cleaners will clean and deliver each donated coat to the Wichita Salvation Army for distribution.
3 cups milk (any variety will do) 2 tablespoons powdered sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup white chocolate chips
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk 2 cups heavy cream, divided
4 tablespoons raspberry liqueur or syrup
1. In a slow cooker, combine white chocolate chips, condensed milk, 1 cup cream, and milk. Cover and heat on low about 2 hours. 2. In a large bowl, mix remaining 1 cup cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla.
3. Using a hand or stand mixer, whip until stiff peaks form.
4. Serve mugs of hot chocolate with about 1 tablespoon of raspberry liqueur or syrup to taste and a dollop of whipped cream.
In The Bag Cleaners was awarded the 2017 Salvation Army Corporate Partner Award for their involvement with the Warm Hearts Campaign.
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1951 N. Ohio Ave Wichita, KS 67214 (316) 267-3407 | www.inthebagcleaners.com
INSIDE This ISSUE
A Word From Dave Coyle Team Leader and Owner
The Resolution That Leads to Better Grades
Be Part of the Warm Hearts Campaign Warm Up With Some Hot Cocoa
The Time Is Right for Nicaragua
Escape to Nicaragua The Country That Has Something for Everyone
After the hectic holiday season, many of us feel like we need another vacation just to unwind. Luckily, January and February are two of the best months to travel. Flight prices plummet and crowds thin out after the Christmas rush. If you’re looking to escape the dreary winter weather, there’s no better place to visit this season than Nicaragua, the “Central American country that has it all,” as Condé Nast Traveler puts it. Whether you’re looking to explore the rainforests surrounding the Río San Juan or get lost in the quirky-yet-beautiful architecture of Granada, there’s something for everyone in this tropical wonderland. One must-see destination is the Cerro Negro volcano. Just a baby at 150 years old, it’s one of the most active volcanoes in the region. It only takes about an hour to scale its smoking, black gravel surface, and the verdant forests surrounding the peak are a sight to behold. Adventurous travelers can board down the side, reaching ludicrous speeds as they teeter and try not to fall. In fact, it’s almost impossible to travel anywhere in the country without seeing an “I boarded a volcano” T-shirt.
If relaxing on a pearlescent beach is more your speed, take a short boat trip out to the Corn Islands. There, you can amble around the small towns bordering the shockingly blue Pacific, visit a number of laid-back seafood restaurants, get scuba certified for a fraction of the price anywhere else in the world, or just read your book as you swing in a hammock by the waves. You can also visit the gorgeous, alabaster Our Lady of Grace Cathedral in “new” Léon. The biggest church in all of Central America, this unique Baroque and neoclassicist structure was built in 1814. Visitors can climb onto its roof (as long as they don’t wear shoes) and bask in the view of surrounding volcanoes (including Cerro Negro). If you’re planning on heading to Nicaragua, it’s best to do it soon. Neighbor Costa Rica often overflows with tourists, and instead of wading through the crowds there, many travelers are catching on to what Nicaragua has to offer.
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