Village considers unique laundromat proposal

Local News

FISHER, Ill. (WCIA) — A new business proposal has some people raising an eyebrow. We’ve all heard of video gaming and laundromats, but what about putting the two together?

The idea makes sense to one business owner in Fisher. He thinks the video gaming will actually help keep the laundromat open, but some changes need to happen before that type of business will be welcome.

This would be the village’s first laundromat. Most people living there say it’s been a gap in the community for a long time, but some have a problem with the idea of video gaming along with it.

“Most of the folks around here don’t have a washer and dryer, so I think it’s a good idea,” said Stephanie Maley, who works nearby. She says she talked to other people living in the area, and they agree that a laundromat will be supported.

“I heard they needed it, ya know. Big dryers for their comforters. They think it’s a good idea,” said Maley.

However, Maley is hesitant about the addition of video gaming along with the laundromat. Still, in a village of less than 2,000, keeping a laundromat afloat may need the help of that extra income. That’s why the owners of Ingold’s Meat and Deli, Brandon Chandler, is proposing that video gaming be installed as well.

There’s some work to be done before that can happen. First, state laws require that, in order to have video gaming, you first need a liquor license. On top of that, the village’s laws don’t allow a liquor license for a business like this. So, officials would need to make an amendment.

“Currently the village’s liquor ordinance mandates that the sale of alcohol for in-premise consumption either be tied to a club organization or incidental to the sale of food,” said Fisher Village Administrator Jeremy Reale.

Maley says she’s all about entertainment while you wait for your laundry, but she’s not sure this is the right kind.

“Most people go to the mat with their children, and I think they need something to do while they’re in there. I think the gaming needs to be outside of the laundromat,” said Maley.

Regardless of her feelings, Maley believes there will be plenty of business to support the plan.

“There’s a lot of people that come here, and besides Amvets, and there’s a lot of people that like to gamble. They like to spend a lot of money.”

Chandler says they would likely add arcade games for kids to play, as well as Wi-Fi, and they’ll add in a full partition dividing gaming from the rest of the laundromat. He also plans to shut the games off for family day, which he says will be on Sunday’s.

There will be a public meeting with Fisher Village Board on August 8th to discuss the proposed amendment.

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