ELKO — New Bodily’s Furniture owner Chris Sanders’ name might not be as well-known as that of previous fifth-generation family owners Ed and Jeannie Gillins, but he is no stranger to Elko or the furniture business.
Sanders owns the Idaho-based Everton Mattress factory, makers of Therapedic-brand mattresses. Like Bodily’s, the mattress company was a fifth-generation operation. Sanders, who also has experience in mining, worked there for 23 years before buying it about three and a half years ago.
For most of his tenure with the mattress company, he worked with the Gillinses as an account representative, as Bodily’s was — and is — a supplier of Therapedic mattresses. After the family put their business up for sale, Sanders stepped in to negotiate an offer.
“A week later, we had a deal,” Ed Gillins said.
The family sold the business including the original location on Commercial Street, warehouse and the name.
“We felt the Bodily’s name resonated with Elko. It was an established store that we wanted to be a part of,” he said. “We were excited about that because it meant something in that area and has a great reputation.”
Bodily’s Furniture reopened in mid-September just a few weeks after the Gillinses retired.
The ground-floor showroom and basement are filled again, and shipments are being delivered weekly. Sectional sofas, recliners, antique-style credenzas, rustic dining tables and chairs, lamps and decorative wall hangings adorn the space. The store no longer carries appliances.
The products come from companies in nearby states such as Oregon that Sanders said he and his team investigate for quality and value.
He then purchases in bulk and transports the offerings through his own trucking company, Everton Trucking.
He said that helps him keep prices down.
“We are going to provide the best values we can and make it fun at the same time,” Sanders said.
Therapedic mattresses are a primary display. Rows of white and gray quilted mattress in various styles of bedframes line the side showroom — much like they did under previous ownership — and fill the basement level.
“Of course, our focus and most furniture will be bedding,” Sanders said.
Service should remain much the same, the new owner explained, as the store will continue offering free delivery.
Much of the eight-member staff stayed onboard, as well, including six-plus-year employee Teresa Hankel, and Luis Hernandez, who has worked at Bodily’s for almost 12 years.
The two employees said that it seems as though the community doesn’t realize yet that Bodily’s has reopened, but they and the showroom are ready.
“We are going to provide the same services Bodily’s did and hopefully do more with service functions,” Sanders said, explaining that he plans to continue the Gillinses’ tradition of community involvement and philanthropy.
“We plan to be a very active role in the community that way. You gotta support the community that supports the stores,” Sanders said. “We have always believed that you need to do that.”