K&S Furniture in downtown Farmer City. Was founded in 1962, the family-owned K&S is central part of the town. Not only do they sell furniture throughout Central Illinois with their great line of products from La-Z-Boy, Hackney, AW Wood and Bemco just to name a few; they are also a mainstay in town activities from the Christmas parade to Heritage Das to the Farmer City Fair.
K&S Furniture got started in the early 60’s when Harlan “Junior” Kimler was working at The How Store in LeRoy, was approached by upholstery salesman Ted Shields. Kimler said “We bought from him and we were friends,”
Shields came to Kimler and said he wanted to start his own furniture store and wanted him to join him. They choose Farmer City, where the economy was booming.
“We started off in good economic times. We had pretty furniture, and later we added carpet and linoleum,” recalled Kimler later they added carpet and linoleum, then a paint and wallpaper department followed. Shields later went on to other business opportunities.
Kimler and his wife and co-owner, Marie, outgrew their original location and moved to their current 10,000-square-foot store in 1975. Growth meant they need more help and daughter Teri Emmerson (current owner) was recruited.
“Mom just came and asked me if I wanted to come to work,” said Teri. She had been taking care of her two children and baby-sitting for other children at the time.
The Kimlers, who lived in LeRoy kept the store in Farmer City because “We just liked it here,” said Junior. “This is in spite of offers to move to larger communities, like Mahomet and Bloomington-Normal” said Teri.
People drop in throughout the week as well, to talk and often to discuss plans for civic events. For about 20 years the Kimlers and Teri planned and organized the Christmas parade and Teri was one of the Chamber of Commerce members who started and planned Heritage Days.
“The have helped with about anything that has gone on in Farmer City,” said Farmer City resident and friend Shirley Franklin. “They have been and still are a great asset to the community.”
In 1995 Dick Builta and his son Gregory bought the carpet and floor covering business from the Kimlers.
In the early 2000’s Sweet Marie’s Gift Shop was added to the store, inside the old bank vault filled with craft and decor items.
In 2013 One Flight Up, a consignment shop was added to the second story of K&S, where you can find a little of everything. Also that same year K&S partnered with Bennett Cleaners out of Chatsworth to offer dry cleaning services to Farmer City again.