By Leah Sander
WARSAW — Kevin Frentner’s business, MANIA Sports CAVE, was born out of his desire to help sports memorabilia collectors like himself.
“I started the business because … I am a big collector and people would ask me questions about it,” he said. “Where did you get this? How did you get this? And they didn’t know and it made me think about I didn’t know. So, I thought you know what, why don’t I just (start the business) because I learned where to get it and how to get it.”
“And also with that being said, we don’t have anything and it’s … a three-hour drive or more to find some of this stuff that’s autographed, so now you have it and it’s right here in hometown Warsaw,” he added.
The Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce had a ribbon-cutting for MANIA Sports CAVE, 2218 E. Winona Ave, Warsaw, on Wednesday, Sept. 8. Sports fanatics can find autographed jerseys and helmets and other small collectibles like figurines.
Frentner started the business online last year and people may still shop there by going to maniasportscave.com. He purchased the physical location in November and did a lot of work renovating it.
The store is open Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and Sunday afternoons. People should check the business’ Facebook page to double-check if the store is open.
Frentner noted the hours are looser now because he’s still working on purchasing product. He also works another job right now but hopes eventually to make MANIA Sports CAVE his full-time job.
With the store’s location in northern Indiana, much of the store’s products are Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears.
“The goal is to have all 32 (NFL teams) to offer,” Frentner did note.
Products are authenticated. Frentner said customers can purchase online and pick up in-store. Layaway is also available.
Future plans for the business include having athletes do signings at the store. Frentner also hopes to open other locations.
As Frentner mentions on his website, the business includes “a family-oriented foundation built on Christian principles.” His son Ryan, is also involved in the business.
Frentner is also donating part of sales profits to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
“Cancer sucks … I couldn’t imagine having a child, I couldn’t imagine being a child and have to deal with that kind of stuff, so to me, that’s a big, big thing and what they do means a lot to me because the parents have a lot of things going on and with that being said, that sucks kind of deal,” he said.