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“For Fred Smith, every head is a new challenge. He owns King Hair on Main Street in Logan.
‘Its a hairy business, but we’re stilling hanging in there,’ Smith said.
He has been a barber for a long time. After his father put him through barber school so he would have something to fall back on, Smith majored in business at USU while working part time at the family business, called Modern Barber Shop. One day, one of his father’s main barbers quit and he said he would fill in full time for a while.
‘I’ve been here ever since,’ Smith said. But he doesn’t regret it.
He said he wonders what would have happened if he had done something else, but the hair business has been good to him. Visiting with people and cutting hair are the things Smith says he likes to do best.
King Hair started in 1971 when Smith bought Modern Barber Shop from his father and changed the name. Smith and his wife, Linda, decided to move the barbershop to the building they are in now, at 118 N. Main in Logan. Linda bought the building because she was working at the Smith’s grocery store at the time and making more money than Fred.
‘Its in my name,’ Linda said. ‘Fred is worried.’ Before they bought the building, which was previously a bakery, they had to clean it out and remodel, but almost lost the space because they didn’t have the money to get the facility up to city code requirements. Thankfully for the Smiths, they were able to keep their shop after replacing the roof and removing the huge ovens inside the building.
At first, King Hair was a traditional barbershop and Smith had three barbers working for him. Now the store has over 30 stylists. Smith said he was one of the first to combine men and women.
‘Now they can bring the whole family,’ Smith said. The biggest risk Smith says has made in his life was starting King Hair.
‘People probably thought I was crazy,’ he said. ‘I know my dad did.’ Even though it was risky at first, Smith said it has worked out great for him.
Fred and his son Dave work together, noting they have a good relationship for a father and a son who work together.
In fact, Dave’s story is a lot like Fred’s. After he lost the student body president election at USU by three votes, he needed to get away. So he went to Utah Technical College (now Snow College) for hair school. He started working at King Hair part time when he came back to USU. Dave graduated in business and political science, but he said he liked cutting hair and decided to stay in the business, too.
‘I manage Fred now,’ Dave said. He said it has been good to work with his dad because they get along well.
‘Its rare that a father and son can do that,’ Dave said.
Dave said the reasons his dad keeps working is because he likes the association with the people and he likes to get out of the house.
‘He’s happy-go-easy and non-confrontational,’ Dave said. ‘He’s an icon of downtown.’
King Hair is located at 118 N. Main Street in downtown Logan, for anyone who needs a haircut, and no appointment is needed.”
Excerpt from article by Holly Mitchell from the USU Statesman, August 28, 2006