Within Lydia Kennedy’s business, Reactivate New and Used Activewear, she stands behind one model – our customer’s success is our success.
In the 800-square-foot store that is open Tuesday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., located at 2782 N. Campbell Ave., the walls are filled with sports clothing and footwear of all different shapes and sizes from cycling to soccer. But those clothes and shoes are there because of her customers.
The store’s name explains exactly what she does with new and very lightly used sports clothing – she reactivates it.
“An important concept with us is that people are able to bring in their like-new, pre-washed items, get cash trade and let somebody else reactivate it,” Kennedy said. “Let’s face it, some of those items have been left in a drawer or stuck in a closet somewhere.”
Kennedy gives the example that a gentleman who have bought some clothing online and it didn’t fit. Rather than immediately return it, it was simply forgotten about and placed in his closet. He later found it, brought the article in and received trade for it.
Since February of 2011, a native of Tucson, has been having similar interactions with her customers, giving them cash and store credit for items they don’t need, which they can then use to buy sporting attire they would like at a fraction of a typical retail price.
For example, Kennedy said biking jerseys can cost anywhere from $80 to $150, whereas the ones in her store, which are new or like new, are between $10 and $40.
“When you look good, you feel good, and you play good,” she added.
Getting into becoming an entrepreneur wasn’t the smoothest of travels for Kennedy. After graduating from Salpointe, she received her college degree from the University of Arizona in psychology. She then earned her master’s degree in educational leadership from Northern Arizona University.
Throughout most of her childhood, Kennedy was involved with sports in some fashion. Whether it was becoming one of the first girls to play on an all-men’s soccer team, or competing in discus and shot-put on her track team, Kennedy has had that attraction and tie to sports.
Throughout her career, Kennedy dabbled in the corporate world and she worked for the YMCA. She had a stint at Lady Footlocker and also at a local casino. She worked in construction and she worked in human resources, but all the while wanted to be her own boss and she had a desire to be involved with sports in some fashion.
Along with running and operating Reactivate, Kennedy had become involved, with her store, in fighting common trends in health issues by motivating people old and young to pursue an active lifestyle.
In less than a year and a half, Reactivate Sports has donated more than 4,100 articles of sports clothing valued at more than $18,000 to children and adults alike.
Being one that contributes back into her community along with someone who no longer works in the “corporate world” Kennedy has seen a wonderful response from the people she interacts with.
“People are genuinely happy,” she said, “They are excited, they are appreciative, and I am appreciative to be able to do what I love and have passion behind it. I am able to help people live and have healthier lifestyles affordably and bring smiles to their faces and bring all of this wonderful abundance of affordable clothes, shoes and gear to them.”