Kraut's Locker in Spring Valley now has a new façade and bright red roof.  The improvements were made in November, and owner Kenny Kraut is pleased with the finished project.  GRETCHEN MENSINK LOVEJOY/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
Kraut's Locker in Spring Valley now has a new façade and bright red roof. The improvements were made in November, and owner Kenny Kraut is pleased with the finished project. GRETCHEN MENSINK LOVEJOY/SPRING VALLEY TRIBUNE
Kenny Kraut blames the neighbors.

"Number one, it's because Todd Jones built the new hardware store next door, and number two, because there's been no remodeling done here since we opened," said Kraut, explaining why his business, Kraut's Locker, now has a fresh new façade that he hopes customers and prospective customers will find sharp and inviting. Jones built a brand new True Value Hardware store directly to the north, and Kenny cited that "the neighbors are showing us up."

He related that Kraut's Locker is soon to celebrate half a century in business in Spring Valley and that it had put the same face forward since the day it opened, giving him good reason to want to update his storefront.

"We've been here since 1968, and I had the opportunity to do some remodeling when I found out that the EDA had low-interest loans available. I wanted to make it look nice." Kraut commented that while the building has a new red steel roof and white siding installed by his brother, Bruce Kraut, and Bruce's construction crew, there's more to come. "We have new signs and a steel roof, and we also insulated the roof, which helps, especially during the cold weather. It's not completely done yet - we have at least another sign coming, and we may do something with the driveway, but I'm not sure yet if we will. My brother's construction company did a really nice job, so I want to thank him and his crew."

The location on the almost-corner of Pleasant Avenue and West Tracy Road has been advantageous to Kraut's from the beginning, but the addition of the hardware store has increased traffic into his store.

"It's going pretty good, what with Kwik Trip and Todd's store," he said. "We've got new people coming in who maybe have stopped at the hardware store and want to get a lot done at once, so they stop in to see us, too."

Kraut's Locker is located at 624 N. Pleasant Ave., Spring Valley. For more information and tasty eats, stop in, or call 346-7707.