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Shine On: STL Photo of the Week

Posted on March 20, 2020 in Photos

Lavert Johnson shines a customer’s shoes in Terminal 1 at St. Louis Lambert International Airport.

In the busiest of times and those not so, there has always been a dedicated crew of men at the wait for travelers in need. In need of a shine. A polish. A wax. A clean. A spiffing up of tired, worn, or shoes just barely hanging on. Step up in the elevated seats and you get a few minutes of rest while you watch a shine in action. And with it you may step up into a conversation with a new friend. The men at the shine booths at St. Louis Lambert International Airport have been talking and shining for decades. They’ve seen the concourses packed and their booths full of worn shoe leather. They’ve survived the downturns and the death of dress shoes for sneakers and flip flops. And yet, they shine on, because they have a core group of customers who have been stepping up for shines for decades themselves. And through word of mouth, their reputation pulls in the younger travelers, too.  STL shoe shiners have been known as some of the best in the country. So, the next time you fly, treat yourself - and your shoes-- to a shine. And then repeat.