Original owner purchases massage business back

Published 3:12 pm Monday, January 23, 2017

For Candice Quisenberry, the purchase of Winchester Therapeutic Massage in January was more than just a business investment. It was a homecoming.

Quisenberry was the one who began the business in 1994 after returning to the community she grew up in from Baltimore, Maryland, where she had been living.

“My husband and I moved here from Maryland,” Quisenberry said. “He wanted to start his own business and so he started the Drum Center of Lexington, and he had that for many years until he passed away in ’07. I started this one in ’94 with just myself and it’s kind of grown.”

Since opening, the massage center has moved twice. First from its original location on the Bypass to 505 W. Lexington Ave. and again to its current location at 246 W. Lexington Ave.

She said the community has been very supportive of Winchester Therapeutic Massage, both when she started the business and even after she sold it in 2013.

“I had health issues and couldn’t really do the work anymore,” Quisenberry said. “I had a friend who wasn’t a massage therapist but she said she wanted to keep it open.”

The business was later sold to a third owner before being bought back by Quisenberry on New Year’s week after hearing the owner was considering selling or closing the center.

“She had talked to some other people about selling it or maybe just keeping it open a little while longer to honor the gift certificates and then close,” Quisenberry said. “I guess I just couldn’t stand to see it close. The thought of it really bothered me. I made her an offer and she took it.”

Quisenberry said one thing she’s happy about is that through all the different owners and location changes the staff at Winchester Therapeutic Massage has largely stayed the same.

“I’m a lucky person to have that happen,” she said. “I find that just amazing. We are a pretty close-knit group. We work together, sometimes we go on vacation together”

Quisenberry said her business faces more competition now than it did when first opened. However, she said that’s not necessarily a bad thing, as it shows massage therapy has become more mainstream and is better understood by the general public.

“If you have muscular aches and pains, it can help remedy that,” she said. “People who sit at a computer all day long, they’re going to get really tight and sore. Massage can help stretch you out. We like to say it helps create space because our muscles contract. It can also help increase blood flow and an overall sense of well-being.”

Winchester Therapeutic Massage gets much of its business through referrals from doctors and chiropractors. However, Quisenberry said the bulk of the businesses’ clientele are regulars who come without a referral.

HOPES FOR THE FUTURE

Quisenberry said now that she is in charge of the therapeutic massage center again, she has some hopes for how the business can expand in the future.

“I’m hoping to connect with some of the other exercise places and businesses in town and see how we can complement each other with the community in mind,” she said.

She said she has already reached out to some representatives about partnerships, but no official decisions have been made.

Quisenberry is also a new member of the Winchester-Clark County Chamber of Commerce, and she said that while she is unsure of how the membership will affect her business, she is impressed by what it has to offer.

“It’s a great way to network, of course,” Quisenberry said. “Cindy Banks has really turned it around. She is so excited and I love it. I was a chamber member before and we didn’t have orientation or anything. Now it’s a community effort.”

Winchester Therapeutic Massage is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.