Neighborhood Anchor — BVL Sales & Service

This article appeared last month in the Logan Square Chamber of Commerce Lamppost newsletter.  It’s a great fit for this blog; haven’t  you wondered about BVL?  The article is reprinted here with permission from the Logan Square Chamber of Commerce and the author, Mandy Guzman.

Guest post:  Mandy Guzman

Mandy Guzman received her bachelor’s degree from Bradley University and is now furthuring her education at the University of Chicago.  She has been teaching in a variety of capacities for the last nine years in both Spain and the Chicagoland area.  Mandy has been a Logan Square resident for the last two years.  She loves being involved in her community and spends Saturday mornings helping out at Nuestra Señora de las Américas in Logan Square.  If you’d like to contact Mandy, send her an email at brillmandy at hotmail dot-com.  

BVL Sales & Service on Milwaukee Ave.

Nineteen sixty-one was a year of many great events.  John F. Kennedy became president.  Ham the chimp rode a rocket into space.  The Peace Corps was established, West Side Story was released as a film and the future Princess Diana was born.

That same year, BVL Sales & Service, Inc. opened at 2645 N. Milwaukee Avenue, across the street from the Logan Theater.  Owner Stephen Petramala was a young boy when his father opened the shop, which is truly one of a kind.  The store sells space heaters, wall heaters, furnaces, and replacement parts for this category of appliance.

When the shop first opened for business, a variety of gas-fired space heater items were sold by numerous suppliers.  Since then, most of those companies have closed down.  BVL’s business, on the other hand, is still thriving.  People travel from all over the Midwest to Logan Square to buy parts from it.  While BVL does provide shipping and makes service calls, don’t expect to order anything over the Internet!  The store does not have a computer.

When asked how he keeps all of his records organized, Petramala tapped the side of his forehead and with a bemused grin said that all of his information was stored in his head.  When it comes to dealing with the finances, his wife and accountant are in charge of the bookkeeping.

While Logan Square has changed throughout the years, BVL has remained the same for the last five decades.  Combined, the four employees, two of whom work part-time, have about seventy-five years of experience with space heating equipment.  As a result, the staff is extremely knowledgeable about their products, and can be very helpful to the customers who have been turning to this family-run business for almost half a century.



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