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Palace Shoe Repair in downtown Rockford to close after 95 years

Published: Mar. 12, 2021 at 8:12 PM CST
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - A local shoe repair shop with longer ties to Rockford than just about any other business announces it will be closing its doors for good.

Stateliners have been storming the Palace Shoe Repair shop on North Main Street since 1926. But the business will fall short of a century of service by five years. The family owned iconic store will close its doors for good on April 16. Current co-owner Tom Giamalva has been working at the store founded by his father and uncle since he was 11 years old.

Now more than 50 years later, Tom says the decision to sell its remaining inventory of shoes, belts and leather purses and shut its doors permanently was not an easy one. Tom says, “Our business has been very good for us and very good for our community. It’s not necessarily anything related to COVID-19. It’s just our business had its time and we’re ready to retire and we want to retire together as a family.”

Palace Shoe Repair, named after the iconic former Palace Theater in Rockford, still uses old antique machinery. The store is open Monday through Friday from 7:45 a.m. to 8 p.m., until its permanent closure sometime in April.

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