Oak Park: Competitive Foot set to close in July

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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

It's been "an amazing run" but after 40 years of selling athletic shoes and running supplies to Oak Parkers, Competitive Foot, 102 N. Marion St., is closing its doors, according to the store's website.

The long-time shoe store owners Tim and Tyna Eggert have announced that they are planning to close the store at the end of July and spend more time with their children and grandchildren.

"Tim and Tyna Eggert started the Competitive Foot in 1974 as the first athletic shoe store in Illinois," the website states. "Throughout the years, they have served loyal customers, athletes, and the community through numerous races, fun runs, and events. They are proud of their dedicated staff and thankful for the families, friends, and runners who have supported their local business in Oak Park all these years."

Contact:
Email: tim@oakpark.com

Reader Comments

43 Comments - Add Your Comment

Comment Policy

Craig from oak park  

Posted: June 24th, 2014 5:10 AM

I was out of town for a couple of days and saw the sign in the window today. I am sad to see them go. I thought it was so nice to see them sponsor weekly running events. I am sad to see another empty store front also.

living wage  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 5:25 PM

free market to keep more profits in your pocket than pay your staff a tad bit more fir giving a tad bit more of service. ahhh what a country.......to pay the least amount you can.

OP Transplant  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 4:59 PM

Unfortunately - I agree completely with your comments about DTOP. I can buy a shirt for my dog, but I can't buy a shirt to wear to work. E-cigarettes and top hats like Slash wears can be found on the same block, but you can't buy a pair of dress shoes within the village limits. Just weird. It's like their daring you to try to shop locally!

Unfortunately  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 4:19 PM

FWIW, spouse/ I were happy shoppers of CF. We liked their service and that trumped a slightly higher price point than shopping online. We also found that stores like Galyan/Dick's were comparably priced. Sometimes we go to Gap/Old Navy (kids), but, for us, little remains on Lake St/OP for us to purchase. Factor in the inconvenience/cost of parking (which will worsen once the Gap/Old Navy "lot" is gone) and we go elsewhere. Perhaps lower OP prop taxes would help business, but that won't occur.

Paddy Boy  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 1:44 PM

"Living wage" is a socialistic concept - basically it means we should all live at the same level of success, or lack of, regardless of effort, skill, knowledge, etc. If you don't like your paycheck negotiate a higher one, work harder, go to night school, start your own business, or perhaps move to North Korea. However, I doubt you can buy a pair of New Balance there. God bless the free market!

pee u  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 1:04 PM

did/ do they pay a living wage? doubtful. sad that as a consumer u get higher prices WITH educated staff that dint make an educated wage. Ha ha

OP Transplant  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 11:08 AM

I don't know why the store is closing, but I've enjoyed shopping there. The sales staff is actually knowledgeable, which is pretty rare when buying athletic shoes. It may cost a little more, but, to me, it's worth it for the quality of the service. I'll miss them.

@Long timerunner  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 10:29 AM

The jones' are also the wide world of large scale stores. Why else would the store be CLOSING and not being bought by another running shoe store??? Cleary the profits in the current configuartion dont cut it.

Rich  

Posted: June 23rd, 2014 8:25 AM

Good luck to Tim and his family. They were always supportive of the Village and helped sponsor many events there. Good people, may you have much luck in life.

Charlie Meyerson from Oak Park  

Posted: June 21st, 2014 8:53 AM

Sad news. Where will I get my (9th? 15th?) pair of New Balance 99x shoes?

Deb Quantock McCarey from Oak Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 8:46 PM

As a long-time runner, I will miss this store. Saucony Shadow is my shoe of choice. And over the last 25 years or so, they have tracked it down for me. It was refreshing to purchase shoes from sales people who are runners.

Chris Carrier from Oak Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 5:09 PM

I agree with some of the comments here - what's with the mean spirited snide remarks? I tend to think it's the cowardice of the anonymous comment board. I feel like I'm on Yahoo or YouTube sometimes.

Chris Carrier from Oak Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 5:08 PM

I was very sad to read about this and on top of Bramble's closing, feel like OP is losing two great examples of local retail. I just got into running three years ago and bought shoes and gear from the VERY nice folks at Competitive Foot. I hope others will join me in supporting other area stores for similar purchases, such as Run Chicago in Forest Park and Element Multisport in OP (which doesn't have shoes, but has other items like GPS watches, gels, other gear).

In Glen Ellyn formerly from OP  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 4:52 PM

to Sleepy, Christos, Foomer, etc- The nice thing about this country is you're free to distort the facts, ignorantly and rudely criticize other people's efforts, insult good neighbors, and best of all: you're welcome to NOT spend your money where you don't want to. Specialty athletic shoe and apparel stores ARE still the primary business model for buying running shoes, etc. in the real world, AND yes they do turn over some of their revenue to sponsor and support athletic and non-athletic causes.

Paddy Boy  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 2:16 PM

I've been buying my athletic shoes at CF since I came home from the Navy in 1976. The folks there were always helpful and patient in helping me make a good selection. 1 -2 pairs a year for almost 40 years! They will be missed. As for all you folks trying to save a couple of shillings on the internet - When was the last time your computer said, "Go ahead and walk around, if you don't like them I'll find something that will work for you" ? Good stores and shops help make a good town.

Longtime runner  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 1:55 PM

@Sleepy You may be surprised to find out that only 18% of running shoes are bought online. As far as price goes, @Christos, the avg price for a pair of running shoes in 2013 from a store specializing in athletic footwear was $88.26 according to the industry report. (Though I expect to pay over $125 per pair for mine. )

Christos  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 1:38 PM

But when there is a shop that gouges and only the rich can afford...well, don't let the door hit you ....

Christos  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 1:37 PM

Not mean at all. I go through two pairs every year just walking to and from the train, everyday wear after work, weekends. I WOULD LOVE TO SUPPORT Oak Park stores. I DO support Oak Park stores. Movies, restaurants, ice cream shops, Fuego Loco, Margaritas, OP Bakery, Hole in the Wall, etc. But damn people, these are just shoes. I need New Balance, and even the New Balance website did not have such high prices. Most shops in OP have competitive pricing with the exception of Jewel.

Sleepy  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 1:34 PM

Clearly the model has changed as to how athletic shoes are sold. If you cant keep up with the jones'(internet) then Buh Bye. btw there is a small running shoe store in FP for the die hards. As for CF supporting the community events, isnt that like the people who bought shoes there supporting the community by their dollars.(profits) Its like when bars take monies for something and put up a sticker, who gets the credit? The bar, not the person who bought it.

Bridgett from Oak Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 12:34 PM

Congratulations to 40 years! Good luck to The Eggerts in their future endeavors.

Neighbor from Oak. Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 12:08 PM

Will miss many things about this great store. Always got excellent help in getting the best fit possible-even if it meant I didn't make a purchase. Great customer service and excellent products. Hope it's possible for someone to buy this leading Oak Park business and carry on the tradition.Thank you and happy retirement to the owners.

Karen Herman from Oak Park  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 9:24 AM

Competitive Foot has always been a business that supported the community and it's been appreciated by all the nonprofits always asking for sponsorships and raffle prizes. Best wishes Tim!

In Glen Ellyn formerly from OP  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 9:11 AM

cont'd- bought there last July, wear out their soles and get discarded, like flippant short-sighted negative comments. ha! Good bye to Competitive Foot. (:

In Glen Ellyn formerly from OP  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 9:06 AM

I wish Tim and Tyna a joy filled retirement from the dutiful and dedicated athletic shoe and apparel selling business. My fond memories they contributed to from decades ago with their product offerings and service and as an iconic, almost ever-present, corner store will fade over time even as I still hold onto my own first pair of size 8 flourescent green Nike track & cross country Vainqueur "spikes" from early high school. I may still hang onto them long after the size 10.5 Nike Pegasus+ 30 I

In Glen Ellyn formerly from OP  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 7:55 AM

to Mike from Oak Park- you've got issues and I'm sorry we share the same name. This store has seen and survived so much in 40 years, including the 70s running boom, OPRF track team excellence, North Riverside Mall, the Brickyard Mall, experiments with the Oak Park mall (streets, no streets, streets again, one-ways), and on-line shopping, to name a few. This place was the go-to running shoe store and no matter its inherent limitations, it was local with local employees, not pro athletes. Mike

OPRunner  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 7:34 AM

I don't understand the mean spirited comments here. What purpose do they serve? A long-time store that served the community is closing. Clearly they did something right to have been in business for 40 years.

Longtime runner  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 6:46 AM

It wasn't my running store, but they served the larger community well. They're retiring after 40 years and I wish them the best. I echo the comment about it being too bad the store couldn't have continued under someone else's guidance. The seeds of something even better are there and local runners will miss their support.

okay  

Posted: June 20th, 2014 12:59 AM

Maybe the prices were NOT competitive. Just sayin. over priced products and underpaid staff.

Mike from Oak Park  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 10:46 PM

Good riddance, poor service, terrible selection, and awful pricing. Many other local running stores are miles better.

kathryn from oak park  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 6:36 PM

We shopped at this local store for 30 years and liked the quality of shoes, clothing, and service. It was always a treat to drop in when in DTOP. The Competitive Foot will be missed and we hope it will be replaced by another high quality small business.

swanpeg from Oak Park  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 6:18 PM

I appreciated their great customer service and merchandise. Surprised at the negative comments. I will miss this store - best wishes to the Eggerts.

doug kittredge from oak park  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 6:10 PM

It is a great store, i hate to see it go but after a great run they deserve to be able to enjoy their time as they want.

Gail Moran from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 5:15 PM

I'm very sorry to hear this. Not only were they my go to store for athletic shoes and socks, for the seven years I was involved in the Wright Ride, they were a reliable and generous sponsor. Best wishes on the next phase! Oak Park loves you!

Another Runner from Oak Park, Illinois  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 4:27 PM

Finding the right pair of running shoes is a prescriptive process honed over time that depends (for most) upon an ongoing relationship with a great running store. The value of that relationship to a serious runner is significantly more than the premium paid over an online option. If you're after a pair of gym shoes, buy away at Amazon. Competitive Foot wasn't my preferred running store, but sorry to see a store that helped fellow runners for an amazing four decades go.

Foomer  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 3:01 PM

Hate to be that guy but the prices at this place were insanely high. went in there during thursday night out last week, peeked at a couple tags and walked right out.

Christos  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 2:28 PM

I tried shopping there. The prices were outrageous. I tried several times. 30-40% higher than even the worst department stores, never mind online. Maybe your average OP lawyer could afford it, but not me. Good riddance.

Maria Cooper from Berwyn  

Posted: June 19th, 2014 2:21 PM

I always received great customer service at this store. Really sorry to see them go!

Dan Haley from Wednesday Journal Wednesday Journal Employee

Posted: June 19th, 2014 1:15 PM

Tim brought Competitive Foot to Oak Park just about the time we started Wednesday Journal in 1980. And I thought, "Oh, right, a store that just sells gym shoes." Clearly another of my great visionary moments.

John  

Posted: June 18th, 2014 9:04 PM

Oak Park deserves a topless barbar

Runner from Oak Park  

Posted: June 18th, 2014 6:29 PM

I wonder if they've tried to find a buyer for this great business. I hope they can! Best of luck to the Eggerts in their next adventure!

Happy Runner  

Posted: June 18th, 2014 5:51 PM

I personally think 40 years of hard work and dedication devoted to making a small business successful deserves our congratulations and well wishes. Thanks for being an anchor in downtown Oak Park for these many years!

OP Transplant  

Posted: June 18th, 2014 5:36 PM

Great store, great people. This is a shame.

The dude  

Posted: June 18th, 2014 5:22 PM

Another store closing, and another empty store front to add to the increasing number. Maybe we can get another e-cig store, or possibly a pawn store to take it's place.

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