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You may not believe me, but I WAS not looking for a roadside attraction when my family passed by this unique building in Bakersfield, California.
We were on our way through an intersection on our epic California road trip, when I spotted this 25 feet tall, 32 feet long, big shoe repair shop roadside attraction. I don’t think I’ve ever grabbed my camera as quickly as I did when I spotted the shoe. I fumbled with the lens cap, pointed, shot and managed to get one photo. I wanted to get a closer look, but my husband refused to drive around the block.
The grayish building, was built in 1947 by Chester Deschwanden, who worked as what else? A shoe repairman. When he died, his son, Donald who had worked at his father’s side since he was nine, took over the business which he ran for 40 years before his death in 1992.
The building was deserted for more than a decade before it was purchased by a Mexican businessman and restored as a shoe repair business. The building has been featured in several magazines and books that have featured unique buildings. Unique, it is but do you know what makes this building extra special? It’s the only shoe-shaped building in America with shoelaces.
You can see the Big Shoe Repair Shop Roadside Attraction at 931 Chester Ave in Bakersfield, California and don’t be too quick to put your camera away, you’ll find a giant pressure canner or stock pot a few houses down. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a photo of that one and as I already mentioned, my husband didn’t want to turn around.
Have you seen the Big Shoe?