Erich Krumrei has leased the former Hallmark location on Madison Street and is opening a Play It Again Sports store this spring or summer. | Alex Rogals, Staff Photographer

Play It Again Sports, a national franchise with over 250 stores in North America, is scheduled to open in Forest Park in late spring or early summer. David King, a commercial real estate broker, represented owner Rich Schauer in a long-term lease for the 3,200 square foot former Hallmark store at 7443 Madison St. The store, said King, has 40 feet of frontage on Madison St. and 11-foot-high ceilings.

The owners of the Forest Park Play It Again Sports are Oak Parkers Erich Krumrei and wife Rachel Caskey, who are looking forward to opening a store that will be driven largely by community engagement.

Krumrei said they are thrilled to have chosen a location in Forest Park and appreciate the warm welcome they’ve already received from the village and surrounding communities. Parents to three children, Krumrei, who is a military veteran and Caskey, a physician, are especially excited to partner with local non-profits.

The Play It Again Sports website describes its business model this way: “You may never outgrow your favorite sports — but you may outgrow your equipment. Your locally owned Play It Again Sports provides an easy way to sell your quality used sports and fitness gear and get paid on the spot or trade up for what you need now.” Customers can save by purchasing affordable used gear or choose from their selection of brand-new equipment from the most popular brands.

Here’s how it works: You bring sports and fitness gear you are no longer using into the store where it will be reviewed by a member of the staff. Based on condition and market demand, they will make you an offer which if accepted will be paid in cash. Play It Again accepts all equipment from team sports like baseball and soccer, as well as individual sports and home gym equipment. The closest franchises to the new Forest Park location are in Westmont and Oak Lawn.

King represented ownership in the transaction, and John Lawrence of Berkshire Hathaway represented the franchisee.

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The owners are looking forward to connecting with local sport teams, clubs, sport organizations, park districts and schools. Social media and emails are under construction and will be up and running soon. To reach the owners, or for additional information, please contact representatives Jenny Shepherd or Christine Barnard at

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