TOPEKA (KSNT) – Play it Again Sports just opened its Topeka location at the end of June, and it’s already giving back to the community.
It’s a retail store for gently used equipment — the idea is to buy gear from customers, clean it up and resell it at a discounted cost. Store owners Sean and Terica Gatewood recognize how expensive sports equipment can be, so they work to make athletic equipment accessible to families who can’t afford it.
“The biggest thing we do is to make it easier for parents and kids to participate in more sports by being able to trade in your used gear, buy something new, or trade up on used gear as well,” Sean said. “So by lowering the financial burden, we’re able to keep more kids doing positive things.”
It’s hard for kids to play without the equipment necessary for their sports. Last season, a local organization called the “Sunrise Optimist Club” had to turn kids away from its football program because it didn’t have enough equipment. A new partnership with Play it Again Sports will help Sunrise Optimist keep gear in stock and make sure they’re able to offer kids a playing spot this year.
“Play it Again Sports is going to fill in that gap that we are seeing happening because kids can’t afford the equipment or are not able to find the equipment,” Dennis Reedy, the Youth Sports Director at Sunrise Optimist, said.
Anyone who buys and sells gear at the Topeka Play it Again store can choose to donate the proceeds to places like Sunrise Optimist. These donations help keep local sports organizations running and make them able to afford supplies when needed.
Play it Again works with athletic directors, school teams, coaches and athletes around town to provide sports gear and low costs for everyone. At the end of the day, the goal is to make sure kids of all ages have access to play at their highest level.
“There’s something here for everybody,” Terica said. “Whether it’s you’re interested in the new gear, and you have used stuff at home, or even if you don’t have used stuff at home. Or those that are just needing the value too that they want to trade in used to get used. So I think it’s really a place for everybody here in Topeka.”