CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio (WJW) – If you live in Cleveland Heights, you probably are very familiar with Heights Cleaners. At the end of the month, however, after 65 years, the 98-year-old owner is going to retire.
Every day since he bought Heights Cleaners in 1957, Manny Dishler has been coming to the same building at 1863 Coventry and has had one main goal: be the best.
It’s a job that his customers have always appreciated because Manny says that if you run a business, that’s what you’re supposed to do.
“I enjoyed the business and the challenge and I enjoy talking to the people and associating with everybody,” Manny said.
Heights Cleaners has always been known as a place where you brought shirts and hard to clean and press items to get them done.
In fact, there was a time when Manny and his staff were processing more than 15,000 shirts every week.
As the dry-cleaning business changed, Manny says he was able to go with the flow. That’s why he says he’s been able to do this for 65 years.
He says no matter what your age, you always have to be ready to learn and grow.
“We changed all the systems many times and if one of the help had a better idea, we tried it because we could always go back to the old ideas,” Manny said.
At first, Manny didn’t really want to close
In fact, just a few years ago, he even bought new equipment and he trained people to use it.
But COVID hit the dry-cleaning industry hard and Manny says he’s just too old right now to hire and train new people to do the job right.
So when he retires at the end of May, Heights Cleaners will also close for good.
“I’m going to miss the work the customers and the challenges of the business. Every business has a different challenge.” Manny said.
Even though they still put things on paper and kept a pay phone around for emergencies, the customers that came in always appreciated the good service.
Manny appreciated their business and the time he spent doing the best job he could.
“Our motto was if you wouldn’t wear it, don’t give it to the customer,” he said.
Manny says he’s not sure what he’s going to do in retirement because he says the business has been his life. He says the key to living to 98 and the key to a good business are the same: always be ready to embrace change.