Local Barbershop Uses Tradition to Influence Next Generation Local Barbershop Uses Tradition to Influence Next Generation

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) –  Sitting on South Crouse Avenue, Collins Barbershop seems like your average place to get a haircut. What you wouldn’t be able to tell is that this business has been in this neighborhood for over 30 years and they’ve been in business for twice that long. Owned and operated by the Collins family, they take pride in being a fabric of the Syracuse community.

Owner Charleston Collins  says he’s seen a lot.

“We been here [on South Crouse] almost 40 years…been in business almost 60. I’ve seen most of it but not everything,” Collins  said.

Collins Barbershop was founded by Carlton Collins Jr. in the late ’60s,  the family business has moved twice and is now settled on South Crouse Avenue. Having seen thousands of customers and generations of family come through these chairs, they’re sticking to what works.

That includes keeping family involved.  Charleston’s son Tyson grew up in the shop and has been cutting for the last 11 years.

“I was forced into it,” Tyson Collins said while laughing. “My father did what his father did to him.”

Tyson doesn’t know if he’ll take over the shop but he is grateful for all memories he has on Crouse.  “We used to play in this area [pointing at his chair] we would play barber and run down the street to the park.”

This is as much a family affair, as it is, a community effort and the community more than reciprocates with loyalty and love to their favorite barbers.

One customer said they come every week while another pointed out how Charleston used to cut “his father…and now he cuts me, my son and my grandson.”

With their 65th anniversary on the horizon, the father-son duo isn’t worrying about chasing trends. For now, they’re sticking to what works.

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