AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Mike Stanec and his daughter Kaitlin walked 27 First News cameras through what was Austintown’s Wedgewood Lanes, where the only reminder that it was once a bowling alley is a lone bowling ball that’s still hanging around.
“Everybody knows where it’s at. Wedgewood Lanes have been a staple for years,” Mike said.
“It was crazy to see how a once thriving business was completely empty,” Kaitlin said.
The Stanecs own Body Shop Total Fitness, a gym in the same Wedgewood Plaza. They now also own the bowling alley and the nightclub space next door, and construction has started to renovate it all.
“We really want this to be an asset to the community,” Kaitlin said.
“When we’re done, it’s going to look nice. It’s going to help all the businesses in this community, especially this area,” Mike said.
The Stances have pictures of what it’ll look like. A large section will be taken up by the relocation of Body Shop Total Fitness.
“It’s going to have a lot more space. It’s going to have more equipment, larger cardio. It’ll have a sauna. We’re going to have tanning,” Mike said.
“Aside from our traditional gym, we also want to have different classes. We want to have spinning. We want to have yoga,” Kaitlin explained.
Mike said the building was originally built for a movie theater. The theater later became a series of nightclubs, and that space will become what will be called the Austintown Athletic Center, which will be primarily a gym.
“We also plan on having various sports leagues. So, whether that would be basketball, pickleball, volleyball,” Kaitlin said.
About half the plaza will be retail space, but the other half will taken up by the gym and fitness center. Mike says it will be Mahoning County’s largest gym.
“I didn’t know that, but I got that information from the architect. They verified it was bigger than Planet Fitness and the Y and everything else,” Mike said.
When asked how much it’s all costing, all Mike will say is, “We spent too much.”
The roof was in horrible shape. It’s already been replaced, but there is still a lot of work to be done. But even with that in mind, the plan is to be up and running by early next summer.