Westway Western Wear closing up shop after 42 years of service in San Bernardino

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Saturday, December 30, 2017
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The owners of Westway Western Wear in San Bernardino are now closing up shop.

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (KABC) -- For decades, it was the place to go to get boots, cowboy hats and just about any other western gear, but the owners of Westway Western Wear in San Bernardino are now closing up shop.

For Candi Cohen, shaping hats is a lost art, so to speak, but it's something she's done with pride for decades.

After more than 42 years of service, she said it's time for her store with all the hats, western clothing and, of course, boots to close its doors.

"I'd like to keep it open forever, but I know it's time," Cohen said.

It'll be a bittersweet ride into the sunset, not just for her but all of the customers of the beloved store.

"We've been coming here for special occasions. My wedding dress we bought here," said customer Rolinda Morrow.

Perhaps it's a sign of the times. Cohen tried to find a buyer but couldn't.

And not only is it hard these days for a mom-and-pop store to shoot it out with the big corporations, but times are changing.

Employee Ashley Jackson said not as many little ones are into western wear anymore.

"Humans have become less interested in cowboy boots overall. They've decided they're not going to share that legacy with their children, or they weren't exposed to it, so they don't have reason to find out about it," she said.

As for Cohen, she's surprised at how much folks say they'll really miss this place.

"I'm very surprised and honored, actually," Cohen said.

There's no precise closing day. They said they'll shut their doors when most of their stuff is gone.