The best events are not always located in major cities, sometimes they are right in your very own backyard.

The “sneakerhead” community was given the opportunity to gather for Collective Soles’ first ever Stockton Vintage Clothing Expo and Shoe Swap in the parking lot of Dillard's last weekend. Owner Mark Delacruz and his business partner William Shaw had the opportunity to bring this event to Seattle, Washington, but instead, they came to a consensus to bring this Expo back home to the business’s birth place.

“After talking to my partner, I was like, nobody knows who we are, let’s do it local,” Delacruz said. “To me, it was just important that people knew that we want to go to underserved markets, but it was super important for people to know that this was born here,” he said.

Bringing an event like this back home for the community could either be a major hit or a downfall, but Delacruz knew he wouldn’t regret coming to Stockton.

“When people ask why Stockton and not Tracy where you live? I just know Stockton shows up,” Delacruz said. “The other thing is, I wanted people in the Central Valley to know that you don’t have to go to a big city like San Francisco, L.A. or Sacramento to bring the community together.”

Jordan 1’s, Koran 4’s, and Koran 5’s put on display by PJ Lanza owner and operator of Above The Rest Kicks LLC. (Robyn Jones)

Although it was a hot day, a large crowd from other cities such as Pacifica, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Oakland caused a constant flow of traffic for the 80 vendors Collective Soles had brought out.

“I’m not really into the shoes, but I saw the event being advertised a lot over social media, so I came to try the lemonade and the fruit cups from Frutas Danny,” said Jaedan Alfiche, a Stockton resident.

An event such as this one was also a great opportunity to bring out small businesses and help the various owners network and connect with each other.

“Everyone has been very kind so far and it’s just nice to see everyone uplifting each other, supporting each other, and buying each other food or clothes,” said Jessamae Jordan, owner of Jessasubiz.

Jaedan Alfiche enjoying her small cup of fruit with tajin and chamoy from Frutas Danny. (Robyn Jones)

Delacruz and Shaw said it was a successful day and they plan to bring this expo back home to Stockton more often.

“Stockton is home. We decided to come here and try a new market that hasn’t been touched and we believe that it was a great idea,” said Shaw.

Collective Soles will be holding their next event August 19th, in Fremont at 10 a.m., and they can be followed at on Instagram @collective.soles.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *