Surviving as a small business

Main street is always buzzing with business and unique stores. Luckily for these small shops, Antioch thrives in a sense of community.


Ashley Brixey-Thatcher

Downtown Antioch is home to a number of small businesses.

Many of the local shops on Main street in Antioch, Illinois, always have something interesting going on. From pet stores to antique shops, there is enjoyment for everyone. Antioch is a small town with only about 15,000 residents. Knowing this some may find it hard to believe that so many local businesses survive and thrive here. Business owners do this by supporting one another.

Local stores are all up and down the main street of Antioch. Heather Fenzel, the owner of Family Heirlooms, has created the organization called Shop Antioch in order to bring shop owners together. This organization supports, promotes and helps local stores throughout the town by advertising them.

“ I am working with the village itself and the chamber to create more marketing to get people into Antioch to shop here,” Fenzel said. “That is why we want people to come to Antioch, enjoy Antioch and shop in Antioch.”

Community is important to many of the local business owners in Antioch. Luckily within this small town, community and a sense of home is bound to happen. Shop owners, like Christine Talaber who is the business owner of Inspired Homes, love what they do and they love where they do it, mainly because of the community.

“I love doing it [owning a store] in Antioch, my hometown,” Talaber said. “I’ve lived here for 30 years. I love the fact that it’s a small town community.”

With Antioch being such an old town, history is beaming from each store with stories wanting to be shared. Not only is there an amazing history within the town itself, but the buildings and products that are in Antioch are richly filled with history as well. With some buildings being created in 1915, that have been remastered into what we see today, there is history in each business.

The businesses that make a difference in the lives of everyone in Antioch, need to start from somewhere financially. Luckily, banks and business brokers help out local business owners. Country Financial is a local business broker and insurance seller, giving loans and selling insurance, helping people and giving back to the community.

“Whatever you take back from your community, you have to give back.” owner of Country Financial Ed Macek said.

Money is not the only factor into a great business. One of the most important factors is a dream. A dream is what led all these people to their craft, it motivates everyone. Take that leap of faith and people just might fly.

“Have the dream and start with your dream, just take action and make it happen,” Talaber said.

Local stores are unique, just like people. Many love shopping for treasures, and these businesses have something for everyone to find joy in. Even though Antioch is a small town, there are people with big dreams, and sometimes those dreams come true.