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Takken’s Shoes History

Takken’s Shoes History - Our Story

Takken’s Shoe Repair opened its doors in October, 1937 in downtown San Luis Obispo, California.  In 1937, the workforce was still reeling from the effects of the Great Depression, and Harry Takken, a recent graduate of the University of California at Berkeley, after struggling to find steady employment in Northrrn California, returned home and went into business for himself.  Harry built a thriving local business that was an integral part of the downtown shopping scene.  In 1971 Harry passed on the business to his son Robert.  Robert expanded the shoe repair business into retail with the core focus being assortments of western and work boots. The business continued to grow and Robert, always looking for the next big opportunity, spotted the potential in the emerging comfort shoe business.  In 1987 Robert opened the second free standing Takken’s location in Paso Robles, California. Based on the immediate success of this location Robert saw the potential for creating a streamlined version of the business that could be easily replicated and opened in regional malls.  Cris Takken joined in 1993 with visions of growing this new business model.  Marc Takken followed in 1995 and over the next decade the business grew to 25 locations throughout California.

In 2010, Cris and Marc Takken began to contemplate their long- term plans for the business.  They wanted to remain in the business they knew and loved, and decided the ultimate plan would be to operate the stores that were closer to home.  To this end, Cris and Marc formed AHA Shoes, Inc. and subsequently began to purchase many Takken’s locations store-by-store from Robert.    

Business Concept/Philosophy

Takken’s Shoes guiding principle is simple, we provide customers with the best service and offer quality products.  Additionally,  we believe that with the right work ethic, attitude, and an openness to learn-- anything can be achieved.  We have built thriving businesses in many communities throughout California and feel that this is the key to our long-term success.  Our business is built upon repeat business and positive word of mouth advertising.  We also place tremendous value on our people.  We believe that our people are more than employees—they are extended family.

Takken’s has a long history of serving people and their footwear needs.  We are one of the few retail stores that still provide the full-service shopping experience.  Each customer is greeted, their needs assessed, feet measured, and shown a variety of product tailored to their individual needs.  

Thank you, our customers for your loyalty and patronage over the last 81 years!

-Cris and Marc Takken