June 7, 2023


Moving Forward

The Recorder – Young entrepreneur brings streetwear culture to Greenfield with high-end sneaker shop

GREENFIELD — When rural Franklin County may not be the first place a person may possibly visualize a superior-conclusion sneaker store, that did not halt Eli Vaillancourt, whose enterprise started out off on the ideal foot final thirty day period.

Filthy Kicks, primarily based out of The Items Pop-Up Shop at 357 Key St., celebrated its early results with a March 28 grand opening. The ribbon-cutting ceremony followed a comfortable opening the preceding Monday that ushered in roughly $3,000 in 1st-7 days income, according to Vaillancourt. The 20-year-outdated entrepreneur is hopeful that this foreshadows not only a thriving small business, but a cultural change in the area.

Vaillancourt, who grew up in Gardner, moved to Orange at the age of 18. There, he started off promoting shoes out of his home. He put in decades offering orders by vehicle before enrolling in an entrepreneurship software at Greenfield Neighborhood College. Prior to extensive, his travel and preparedness separated him from his 10 classmates, in accordance to Max Fripp, director of innovation and entrepreneurship at GCC.

“We imagine he has what we refer to as the ‘readiness’ to choose this organization he’s been working on for a pair yrs and mature it appropriate in this article in Greenfield,” claimed Fripp, who manages the point out grant that money The Products. The pop-up shop has highlighted a collection of entrepreneurs due to the fact September. “In a desire globe, this would come to be the total-time property of Filthy Kicks.”

Fripp and Vaillancourt see assure in Filthy Kicks thanks to its uniqueness in the region. There is a want for the retail store, Vaillancourt argued, thanks to the closest related enterprises currently being in Holyoke, Springfield and Lancaster. He stated locals, specifically young people today, have previously expressed excellent enjoyment and aid that streetwear culture has made its way to Greenfield.

“I come to feel like the culture is just lifeless out in this article and they just are so content that points are setting up to appear all-around,” he noticed. “It’s just bringing lifetime around listed here.”

“Filthy Kicks represents the new, new, younger vitality we need to have much more of in Greenfield,” Mayor Roxann Wedegartner, who attended previous week’s ribbon-cutting ceremony, explained in a assertion. “Businesses like this will enhance our new skate park and will turn out to be a beacon for bringing more youth and youthful shoppers to our downtown. I’m definitely thrilled to see in which this new business goes and am thrilled to welcome Eli and his crew to Greenfield.”

Vaillancourt feels Franklin County is very well on its way in phrases of a culture change, noting that the youthful technology domestically is “very in-tune” with contemporary manner.

“It’s commencing to turn out to be a little metropolis out in this article, I can notify,” he extra. “Main Avenue is really really energetic. [Urban culture] is commencing to get out.”

Presently, Vaillancourt has more than 100 pairs of retro Air Jordans, Nike Dunks and other coveted collector favorites shelved at Filthy Kicks, with hundreds of other folks completely ready to be stocked. The retail store also carries streetwear staples, such as VLONE tees, Concern of God Necessities crewnecks and Supreme equipment.

Additionally, Filthy Kicks will buy the two new and evenly worn sneakers, so long as they are well-liked within just modern trend. The shop will also buy apparel, equipment and even action figures.

Vaillancourt is receiving support from a new entrepreneur membership program operated by GCC, Greenspace CoWork and LaunchSpace, in accordance to the city’s statement. The 6-thirty day period “business accelerator program” currently engages 10 entrepreneurs from throughout Franklin County with funding from the Massachusetts Business of Housing and Economic Development’s Local community A single Prevent for Development program.

Rent and utility fees for the house will be supported by point out grant funding via June, at which position Vaillancourt would be predicted to pay back landlord Isaac Mass, ought to he desire to retain the storefront. Until then, the younger enterprise proprietor hopes to make his mark on the community’s like-minded youth.

“I hope we can inspire kids to do the appropriate factor, to adhere to their goals,” he reported. “To run with their passion. [Tell them], ‘Don’t drop off,’ and that they can be a person.”

Filthy Kicks is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday by means of Saturday.

Access Julian Mendoza at 413-930-4231 or [email protected].