About Us

Founded in 1972 as a small furniture refinishing company in Warwick NY, The Keck Group has emerged as the number one pew restoration company in the country.

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If you're a religious, commercial, academic or architectural organization in need of pew or furniture repair or refurbishment, we're here to meet your needs!

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Our Proud History

We Started As a Furniture Refinishing Shop

After opening and successfully operating a small furniture refinishing shop in Warwick NY in 1972, we were called to refinish pews from a local church whose pews had been damaged by fire.

The pews were ten feet in length, while our equipment was only six feet long. These were the flow over stripping systems available at the time and would suffice for removing finish from furniture.

After struggling with these oversized pieces, it was determined that we had to extend the existing trays to do this work. This worked well and opened our eyes to the pew refinishing niche which, at the time, was unheard of as a clear business practice.

After successfully refinishing these first eight or ten pews, we decided to pursue this market and did so with an initial handmade mailing to one hundred nearby churches.

From there, we landed our first job and quickly needed to make plans. A rented barn served as our large workshop, and a 20-foot tray was fabricated in a sort of antiquated fashion. But it all worked, and we refinished pews at night with my fellow firemen as newly recruited “refinishers”.

After a year, we built our first six thousand foot building, followed two years later with a six thousand foot addition. At the time, we felt this was a state-of-the-art facility.

Refinishing Project Expansion

As relationships grew over the next five or ten years, we got into large on site refinishing projects in Manhattan, the largest of which was refinishing six courtrooms at the Federal Courthouse in Foley Square. Soon to follow was our largest single project to date, the complete refinishing of all of the woodwork in the restored U.S. Trust Company building at 9 west 54th street. This was followed by restoration of the Indian Museum in Bowling Green, The University Club, and other work in major New York City Landmarks.

The Keck Group turned our total effort to the pew refinishing business in 1998. After many years, we became the prime pew refinishing company for the Archdiocese of New York, Long Island and Newark NJ, among others.

Establishing our Woodworking Facility

Keck group wooden craftsmen at work

We outgrew our facility once more and moved to a 15,000 sq. ft. building in Middletown NY. We completely modified it for the refinishing of church pews, and we remained at that facility until 1998.

Finally, in 1999, our last move to our latest facility took place and we found a home in our block building, which is sprinklered and alarmed for our future. The buildings were purchased in 2004, each with 11,500’ of floor space. The pew building has an additional 1500 sq. ft. of storage space, and a two thousand foot balcony for long term storage. The adjoining building was leased to Catholic Charities in 2012 and we expect them to be long term tenants.

Cathedral Projects and Current Happenings

Beginning in 2013, in addition to our forty to fifty churches having their pews refinished, we completed the first of eleven cathedrals beginning with the pews at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark NJ. Then came St. Patrick’s and The Cathedral Basilica of Old St. Patrick’s in Manhattan , followed by Cathedrals in Arlington VA, Rockville Centre NY, Bridgeport CN, and Holy Cross in Boston .

Now, after completing two major refinishing projects in Manhattan, Trinity Church at Wall Street and Broadway, and All Saints, 86th and Lexington, we are excited to enter the beginnings of many contracted projects throughout 2020.

What Sets us Apart

Our Modern Facility

Our facility is a one-of-a-kind church pew refinishing, refurbishing and construction center with incredibly versatile capabilities. 

Transportation Trailers

Our transport trailers eliminates the need to knock down pews, and thus avert all of the problems associated with that program.

Experienced Workforce

We employ sixteen highly skilled refinishers, many of whom have been with the company for over 25 years.

State of the Art Equipment

Our facility features a self-engineered 24-foot flow over finish removal trays and 1400 square-foot stain and prep area with controlled ventilation

Testimonials

Bob, I just wanted to drop you a quick note regarding your teams performance and the overall product you and you and your team delivered on the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church Project. The team was consistently professional and delivered an outstanding product on time. Even when we faced a couple of unexpected field conditions you and your team took the necessary steps to rectify the issue to ensure the final product delivered was of high quality. Thank you again for your efforts, I look forward to future projects with you and your team.

Brian Tobiasz
Our Lady of Perpetual Help

We are all pleased with the professional job you did. The pews are gorgeous, the kneelers solid. I would be very happy to recommend you at anytime. I must compliment you on your manager Jim - super guy and you workers are all hard working and respectful. Again appreciation to you and all your team for a superb job within the short time frame which you had promised.

Father Owen
St. Rose of Lima

Dear Bob, As the Church's owner representative on our major renovation project and on behalf of the church, I want to thank you for your outstanding performance on the pew renovation. The pews look amazing and have drawn rave reviews from the congregation. Your advice as we considered finish and other options put us on the right path. The refinishing and reuphostering was done efficiently and professionally. You really went above and beyond expectations when you responded to the scheudule pinch that we created by our late fabric selection. As you recall, having all three sections done by the end of August and having the center section done for a wedding in mid-August was critical to us. The innovative phasing that you suggested and then the implemented worked perfectly and made it possible for us to meet all of our deadlines. As one who's been involved in a lot of projects over the years, it was a pleasure to deal with people who take a problem not of their making and solve it instead of using it as an excuse. Thanks for working with us on this important project. Sincerely yours, William K. Wakefield Nassau Project Manager

William K. Wakefield
Nassau Presbyterian Church

Terry, Congratulations to you and your men. The pews are installed and look great! Thank you and them for the great work. We look forward to starting the lower church after the holidays.

Gregory Studerus
St. Joseph of the Palisades

Terry and Bob: We were back in the church last Sunday, and the response to the pews was, as you would expect, everything from spectacular to stunning. Most of the folks can’t believe they’re the same pews! Thanks to you, Bob and your crew for a seamless, pain free experience. I commented to some of the parishioners last night that working with The Keck Group was a great pleasure, as the quality of work is plainly evident, and everything unfolded precisely as scheduled; as you know, not every contractor works that way!

Fr. George Hafemann
St. John Church