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J&J Printing: Making impressions for 35 years
Shawn Nussbaumer looks over a stack of tickets being separated by machine inside of his J&J Printing operation at 130 N. Maple Ave. - photo by JASON CAMPBELL
For 35 years J&J Printing has been a fixture of the downtown commercial landscape.

What began as a modest print shop in the back of Tipton’s Stationary and Gifts quickly grew to its own building on North Main Street that would house the family-run business for more than two decades.

And for owner Shawn Nussbaumer, thinking back to the early days when his father joined forces with a partner to establish the business whisks him back to his childhood. It was when he was summoned to sweep up the shop while he was still in middle school and when he progressed to helping his father with big print runs.

Nussbaumer’s father would eventually buy out his partner, who would go on to establish Tracy Instant Printing. Both businesses commonly share customers and lend a helping hand whenever possible.

When came time for his father to retire in 1998, Nussbaumer – who was born in Modesto and raised in Manteca once his father had established his business – took the reins of what had always been a family operation and began carrying it into a new era.

But a quick jaunt around the building at 130 N. Maple Ave. will more than likely leave you feeling like you’ve flashed back to a much earlier time – observing old but reliable equipment used to do everything from lining-up ticket stacks to run through customized envelopes for both customers and businesses.

Even the front window of the shop pays homage to the individual type machines that were used before more modern equipment became standard fare at print shops like J&J.

And in the last several years, Nussbaumer has done some condensing of his own. When longtime print man Gary Breshears wanted to go into retirement, Nussbaumer purchased the equipment from his business in an attempt to strengthen his own shop and possibly expand offerings to customers.

At the end of the day, however, just being his own boss is enough to keep a smile on Nussbaumer’s face.

“I like being able to have a little bit of free time in the middle of the day to do things like go to my Rotary Club meeting and work on doing things here in the community that help people,” Nussbaumer said. “I find it rewarding to be giving back to a community that served me and my family so well all these years.

“I was brought up to feed the hand that feeds you, and that’s something that I’ve tried to adopt into our business model and into my personal life away from work.”