Russell Patterson and his crew were busy detailing a car when they got an unexpected blast from the past.
“He came in and shouted, ‘I need a job,’” Patterson said of John Madeja, who entered Patterson's Car Wash, 618 King Street in Pottstown on Wednesday.
Madeja, who wasn't actually looking for a job -- produced photographs of the original business and said he owned the shop many years before Patterson reopened it.
Patterson of Pine Forge bought the car wash in April. He leases the 40,000-square-feet building on King Street.
"This place was vacant for five years," Patterson said.
He opened the hand car wash and detail shop this month.
“It’s quicker and less expensive,” he said of the washing technique. “We do very good customer service, quality service.”
He said the shop can wash up to 25 cars in one day.
“We touch cars in places that cars have never been touched before,” he said.
“What makes us different is our price,” he said “And you don’t need an appointment.”
Patterson, who is also the dean of Pine Forge Academy, said he was happy to meet the former owner of the shop.
“A touch of history has come back to Pottstown,” he said. “It lets me know that I made a good investment. It makes me feel like I’m a part of Pottstown.”
Tina Berner, office manager, said Madeja entered the shop late Wednesday morning.
"I was in awe. I felt very nostalgic listening to him," Berner said. "He had very much a sense of pride. It was very moving."
Madeja could not be reached for comment Wednesday.
Donna Wisely of Chester Springs is a registered nurse and works in Pottstown.
She took her car to Patterson's for the first time on Wednesday.
"I drove by," Wisely said of spotting the shop, which transported her to and from her job so she could work while they cleaned her car. "It's a great service."
Patterson's Car Wash is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sun. - Thurs. and 7 a.m to 4 p.m. Fri. To learn more, visit www.pattersonscarwash.com or call 610-470-8579.