Would you go to Minnesota to buy shoes? Probably not if you didn’t live there, but you might be tempted if you visit the Web site of Burkhartzmeyer Shoes of Faribault, Minn.
Burkhartzmeyer Shoes is featured in the “Innovative Downtown Business” series published by the University of Wisconsin’s Center for Community and Economic Development (CCED). All I can say is, “What a store.”
In business since 1949, the store specializes in foot health, even employing two certified pedorthists — people trained in foot care. As explained on Burkhartzmeyer’s wonderfully simple Web site, “Whether you know what you want or not, we sit you down and take a proper measurement of your feet; examining and discussing your foot health. With this information we can suggest the proper shoe for your situation, making sure you receive a proper fit . . . Come in and receive a free foot measurement.”
Burkhartzmeyer’s Web site features a refreshing virtual tour of the store — not one of those annoying videos that walks you through rooms you really can’t see, but a virtual tour presented in narrative form, telling you what to expect when you shop there. The first thing to expect is a greeting: “When you walk into Burkhartzmeyer Shoes, you will be greeted by one of our friendly staff members. Soon after, we will ask how we can help. Whatever your need may be, whether it is buying a new pair of shoes, a repair, or orthopedic work, we are always willing and capable to assist you. If you need to see one of our two certified pedorthists with your foot problems, we ask that you schedule an appointment.”
See what I mean? It’s so refreshing.
The CCED says that Burkhartzmeyer Shoes boosts the local economy of Faribault since it draws customers from other communities: “Often, customers at Burkhartzmeyer Shoes ask where a nice lunch or ladies dress shop can be found nearby.”
The city of Faribault, population 20,818, is located 50 miles south of the Twin Cities at the confluence of the Cannon and Straight rivers.