By ROGER SCHNEIDER
THE GOSHEN NEWS
Cathleen Stevenson was busy Tuesday morning going from one washing machine to another dropping quarters into them. “I love this place,” she said as she snapped a washer door closed.
Stevenson was at Ultra Clean Laundry, which is the former Princess Laundry on Chicago Avenue at Pike Street. Wade Frauhiger purchased the laundry from Bill Cripe and added it to his company’s 13 other laundries. Frauhiger’s company, Quick Clean Sales in Warsaw, also invested in a remodeling of the Princess property, which he said was showing its age. The Princess laundry was built around 1966, according to Frauhiger.
“My theory has been just like the old Zenith commercial, ‘The quality goes in before the name goes on,’” Frauhiger said.
To meet that high standard, Frauhiger has placed all new Huebsch washers and driers in the laundry. Quick Clean Sales distributes the machines and Frauhiger said Huebsch and the Speed Queen brands are owned by the same company.
Also new at the laundry is a giant washing machine that can tumble wash 80 pounds of laundry at once.
“This monster can hold eight loads,” Frauhiger said while he patted the stainless steel machine.
The laundry also has other large washers, including 60-pound, 40-pound and 30-pound capable washers. And there are plenty of standard front-loading washers that handle the usual 20-pound loads.
Along the back wall of the laundry are stacked driers capable of tumbling 50-pound loads and there are also some single driers for 30-pound loads.
While customers are waiting for the rinse cycle to pour in fabric softner, they can watch one of the new high-definition televisions that have been installed or use their cell phone or tablet to surf the Internet via the laundry’s free wireless service.
There are also a selection of food and drink vending machines, a coin-operated ride for toddlers and a few arcade games to entertain older children. And a new paint scheme has brightened the interior.
The laundry will hold its grand opening celebration beginning Friday. There will be a special price for drop-off laundry as well as snacks for customers.
Coin-operated laundries are still very much needed today, according to Frauhiger.
“You can come into a Laundromat and you can do a whole week’s worth of laundry in a couple of hours,” he said.
Stevenson uses the laundry often, and even worked there at one point in the past.
“I came here with my grandma when I was young. I always liked this place, but now, it’s even better,” she said. “What he has done with this place is amazing. I will be an old lady coming to this Laundromat. I am sure.”