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When did Tini Square become   ?  Read on...

 Article published in the Mesabi Daily News October 19, 2008

Tini Square Building sold in Virginia

Staff Writer

Published: Sunday, October 19, 2008 11:54 PM CDT
VIRGINIA — A Virginia landmark has new owners — for only the third time in its 95-year history.

The historic First National Bank building, presently the Tini Square Building, was sold last week to Jeff and April Tatur.

The five-story structure of concrete, steel and marble at Chestnut and Third Avenue over the years has housed various businesses and offices and for the last 30 years has been in the Tini family. April Tatur — Mountain Iron native April Bergquist, daughter of Jed and Arlene Bergquist — is excited about the venture. One day while she was shopping and her husband was fishing, she learned the building was for sale. “I fell in love with the building,’’ she said, and told her husband, “We’re going to be exploring this further. It was hard to contain myself. I have a passion for old things.’’ She wants to “put a little bit more life back into it’’ and return it to its roots.Rick Marwick, listing agent for Vermilion Land Office, has been working with the Tini family for about a year on potential sale of the building. The Taturs’ offer was the first serious offer, he said, and their ideas for the building were the most creative.

The Taturs, who live in Maple Grove, own a home improvement company in the Twin Cities. “The goal is to maintain as many of the relationships the Tini family has secured over the years.’’ Tini Square houses, among other businesses, Dawson’s Travel, Darlene’s Hair Stylists and MB’s Little Gourmet Deli.

When the First National Bank moved to a different location on First Street South, Vincent A. Tini didn’t want to see the building close. So he bought it. Upon his death in 1990, his daugther, Renee Tini Prout, “inherited the manager job,’’ she said. “We could not have found a better fit than April and Jeff for this building. My dad loved the building. It’s built to last. It will be here another 100 years.’’

April Tatur said, “That’s our hope.’’ The building is extra special to Tatur, as an office building she owned in Osseo and planned to renovate was destroyed by fire. “My passion is to be back home a little bit more. I want to spend more time with my mom and dad. I wouldn’t be doing this without my dad.’’

For Renee Tini Prout, the sale brought back fond memories of her father. And in a way, he was with her when the keys were handed over to the new owners on Friday — she was wearing her father’s wedding ring on a chain.

"April Tatur is giving the former First Bank and Tini Square building on Virginia's Chestnut Street a bit of bling"

Click on the link below for the article from Hometown Focus (March 12, 2009) to give you a little insight on April's newest adventure and Mountain Iron upbringing, along with April's parents Jed Bergquist and Arlene Lambert.

Sorry- this link is no longer available, but please read on for other articles


T Squared owner celebrates grand opening

Staff Writer | Posted: Monday, October 19, 2009 12:00 am

VIRGINIA — The year since April Tatur bought the Tini Square has gone by very quickly.

That’s understandable. The Iron Range native is having fun bringing back a touch of elegance to the Chestnut Street landmark she renamed T Squared.

“It’s my hobby,’’ she said last Friday during a grand opening and ribbon cutting to mark the anniversary of the purchase and to show the public the changes in the building.

Now she will focus on attracting tenants to the building she calls “A Timeless Treasure.’’ Tatur will keep the main floor devoted to retail ventures. Here are the types of business she is interested in having there:

• Dental offices (with equipment)

• Chiropractor

• Massage therapist

• Natural health care professionals

• Legal professionals

• Shoe shine

• Watch/shoe/luggage repair

• Hobbyist/work studio

• Nutritionist

• Faux painter, seamstress, upholsterer (for the building’s continued remodeling needs)

• Accessories and jewelry

• Men’s clothing

• General office space

The first year she concentrated on beginning the renovation. “Next year it will be getting people to realize the direction I’m going,’’ she said in an interview in the lobby, where classic furniture and a large picture of the building under construction sets the tone. “I’ve committed my lifelong project to it. That’s healthy for the whole building. It’s a challenge for someone who is into design and decor.’’

She is especially proud of the restoration of the bathrooms. The women’s restroom on the first floor features an 11-step paint process, with pink walls decorated in embossing and faux jewels. Chandeliers complete the look, adding a “nice, elegant, high-end feel,’’ Tatur said.

“I think it’s always been a building of class and professionalism,’’ she said, noting that it was the late Vincent Tini’s vision to create a mini-mall in the Queen City’s downtown.

08/16/13 Hometown Focus

Iconic downtown building celebrating 100 years

By Jean Cole

HTF Editor

VIRGINIA – The iconic T Square building at 302 Chestnut Street in downtown Virginia is throwing a bash for its 100-year anniversary on Wednesday, Aug. 21, from 2-3 p.m.

Neighboring downtown businesses will be giving away different prizes, to be claimed by participants during the release of 100 ping pong balls from the roof of the building. “It promises to be fun for the whole family,” said building owner April Tatur.

In addition to the prize-bearing ping pong balls, there will be balloons for kids, and food vendors including Barb’s Fried Bread. Visitors are invited to view the building’s model suite and renovated main level. Tatur purchased the building a number of years ago and has done renovation and preservation projects there. Dedicated to saving this spectacular building on Virginia’s main street, Tatur invites everyone to visit the building and inquire about lease possibilities, or simply learn about the building’s interesting past.

“I thought the building deserved a celebration,” said April. She tells a story about her childhood when explaining her idea for the ping pong balls:

“I remember my grandmother taking me to an event when I was a child, where balloons with prizes inside, donated by local businesses, were released. Kids chased these balloons all over. I chased one all the way to Hoover Road. It had a piece of paper inside saying I could get my gift at Maki’s jewelry store. So my grandmother took me to the store, and I told them what ring I wanted, but Grandma said no, that’s a wedding ring. But I wanted that ring for my pinky finger. To this day, I wear that pinky ring. To me, it represents how I remember Virginia businesses as a kid, and the fun times I had with my grandparents.”

So when it was time to celebrate the T Square’s 100th birthday, April talked to her parents about what they could do. “My dad said he remembers once ping pong balls being released from a helicopter, and I thought maybe we could do that from the roof of the building.” With the city’s approval, the release of the ping pong balls was approved, along with the blocking off of the street during the event. “We wanted to isolate the event to the downtown area, and this worked.” Then, it was just a matter of getting other downtown businesses on board.

“I bought the building in 2008,” said April, “and I think we need events like this to create more of a sense of community among our downtown businesses. We got a lot of support and I think it’s going to be a really fun day.”

The T Square building, formerly the Tini Square Mall, and originally the National Bank building, holds secrets to Virginia’s past. “I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished so far,” said April. “And I hope to do more. Mostly, I want people to appreciate our history, to care about these historical buildings. We don’t want the downtown to become a faded memory.” 

Posted: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 10:30 pm

BILL HANNA Executive Editor

VIRGINIA — The skies over the T Squared Building on Chestnut Street will rain down 100 ping-pong balls Wednesday afternoon.

The occasion? The structure’s 100th anniversary.

“I think it will be nice to celebrate the building turning 100. It will create some great rapport and camaraderie on Chestnut Street,” said the building’s owner, April Tatur, in a telephone interview on Tuesday.

The event will take place from 2-3 p.m.

The balls will have numbers on them that correspond with prizes to be given away by downtown merchants. There will be a list of the ball numbers and prizes posted in the lobby of T Squared.

Tatur asked downtown business people to donate prizes.

“The response was tremendous. The business community is really pleased and proud to be participating,” she said.

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