Steamboat Springs Rick Petet, of Steamboat Shoe Market, confirmed this week that he and his wife, Linda, are the people behind Petco Steamboat LLC, the buyer last week of 908 Lincoln Ave.
The Petets plan to open a second shoe store, Goodie 2 Shoes, in their newly purchased real estate, which is across from their current store, which they lease at 907 Lincoln Ave.
“I’ve been looking out the window at that building for a long time,” Rick Petet said about the purchase.
The Petets paid $370,000 for the 1,700-square-foot building previously owned by Totman-Lee LLC.
Why two shoe stores on opposite sides of Steamboat’s main street?
Although the Petets have plans to open Goodie 2 Shoes by Nov. 15 with a line of footwear that is different from what they offer at Steamboat Shoe Market, Rick Petet acknowledged that he and his wife are hedging their bets by acquiring real estate. He explained that they recently signed a new five-year lease at the location next door to Steamboat Art Co. at 907 Lincoln, with an escape clause that becomes an option after 2 1/2 years.
“That’s exactly what we’re doing,” Rick Petet said. “We’re covering ourselves.”
The Petets, who were in the retail shoe business in Nebraska before coming to Steamboat, opened their first store here in the 800 block of Lincoln in 2000 before moving to their current location in 2004.
They plan to evaluate how both stores are performing relative to monthly real estate costs in a couple of years and decide whether to continue running both or consolidate into one building.
The storefront at 908 Lincoln, which most recently housed Gallery 11, appears small from the outside, Petet agreed but said it is 100 feet deep and has more wall display space than his current location. Plus, the upstairs apartment will be converted to a storage area.
Among the merchandise categories the Petets intend to rely on to differentiate their new store are the five-toed running shoes recently introduced by Vibram. They are more akin to a slipper than a traditional running shoe and are intended to tap into the momentum of the barefoot running movement.
Vibram is working with other athletic shoe manufacturers to incorporate its five-toed soles into footwear that has a more traditional upper.
The little red brick storefront at 908 Lincoln previously housed Carlson Wagonlit Travel agency but for many years was Estes Sporting Goods, which sold Red Wing boots and other merchandise.
During that era, Hazie Werner’s Storm Hut ski shop was next door at Ninth Street and Lincoln Avenue, where the Center for Visual Arts is today.
The Storm Hut had a smaller building footprint than the modern building does and was surrounded by a parking lot.
The east wall of Estes Sporting Goods was exposed to passers-by and was covered with a painted mural of a leaping rainbow trout.
Petet said he looks forward to a historic remodel of the building’s front façade and exposing the brick and native stone interior walls of the store, where a second old commercial mural has been discovered.