West Allis shoe store gearing up to close after 84 years

WEST ALLIS (WITI) -- It has been around for more than 80 years and now Gawlitta's River Bend Shoe Center is closing its doors.

Owners say the closing is bittersweet.

"We realize everybody's wearing tennis shoes, picking it up online and that's kind of hurting the bottom line," store president Robert Gawlitta said.

The store is having a massive closing sale.  Ten thousand pairs of shoes are in stock and lines of customers are waiting to buy them.

"I've got two boxes now and I'm probably going to leave with four," customer Kerry Mackay said.

And while many are sad to see the store go, the owners say it's time.

"It's time to say goodbye.  Are we ready for it?  Yeah, just about ready for it, it's getting to be too much," owner Eric Gawlitta said.

The store will stay open with sales through late July.