The Barn Family Shoe Store, owned by the Carrigan family of Winthrop, is now open in Newtonville.
Cindy Carrigan, co-owner and lifelong resident of Winthrop, and Joe Carrigan, co-owner and president, and their son, Brendan Carrigan, co-manager and co-owner, celebrated the grand opening with Newton Mayor Ruthann Fuller at a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Oct. 19 at the new state-of-the-art Trio complex at the corner of Washington and Walnut Streets.
Also present at the opening was Danny Swenson, a co-proprietor and business partner of Brendan Carrigan.
“The plan to open a new store had been in the works for four years,” said Cindy Carrigan. “It just happens to be opening during COVID-19.”
The business had been in operation at another location in Newton for 72 years. Joe had worked at the store for 30 years as a buyer and general manager. The Carrigans acquired ownership of the store five years ago.
“When they sold the property, we had two choices: either continue it or close,” said Cindy. “But the last thing we wanted to do was close an institution in the city. So we worked with the developer. The new facility was ready and so we’ve taken the plunge. We’re looking into the future and we think things aren’t going to come back around. Even though it’s a tough time to open a retail store during COVID-19, we’re doing it.”
The store has been an institution in Newton. Generations of customers have made The Barn a premier destination for stylish footwear.
Cindy Carrigan compared her store to the former Publix store in Winthrop Center, though the Barn is a larger at 8,500 square feet.
“It’s that type of store where families and generations shop for men’s, women’s, and children’s shoes,” said Cindy. “We also sell accessories and tens of thousands of pairs of socks. We’re a great source for winter boots, hiking boots, and work boots. We have all the well-known brand names for shoes.”
Cindy Swartz Carrigan was born and raised in Winthrop. She graduated from Winthrop High school in 1976.
“I met my husband during freshman orientation at Bentley College,” said Cindy. “We’ve been married for 39 years. We bought my mother’s house on Crystal Cove and I live in the house in which I grew up.”
They have identical twin sons, Brendan, the aforementioned Barn’s co-manager who attended Bentley and has a law degree from Suffolk University, and Ryan, who works for Fidelity. The Carrigans also have two grandchildren.
The family is now poised to continue the store’s rich tradition at a brand-new, highly visible location.
“We’re a very service-oriented store like how Publix was, where you get the personal attention and you know the salespeople and they have years of experience in the shoe business,” said Cindy. “We’re excited to start this new chapter in our lives.”