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    Mike Holland of the Castro’s Iconic ‘Worn Out West’ Store

    mikehollandEstablished in 1980, Worn Out West has been a Castro destination for 34 years. Although the original 582 Castro Street location was sold, the new store at 2352 Market Street retains all of the original’s unique selections and great service. At the helm is owner Mike Holland, who was chosen by founders Joe and Rob to carry on the WOW tradition. Holland added 2nd Generation to the name to mark the move and other additions.

    A recent Bay Times visit had us perusing the store’s new clothing, leather, rubber, uniforms and more. WOW also still carries a fantastic selection of vintage clothing and other items on consignment. Holland tells us that the long, successful history that comes with Worn Out West allows customers to obtain the merchandise that they covet at reasonable prices.

    Holland took time to chat with us a bit about WOW.

    BT: How did you personally get involved with Worn Out West and why did it interest you?

    MH: I worked at the previous location just because I loved the store for many years prior, dating back all the way to 2004.

    BT: Are there any differences between the “old” Worn Out West and the “2nd Generation” of the store that we should know about?

    MH: Yes, we carry new and used merchandise now. We are also trying to re-establish relationships with our community.

    BT: Is there anything about Worn Out West that is particularly tied to the LGBT community, in terms of groups you support or…?

    MH: We support the Rubber community, the Bay Area Rodeo, Sundance Saloon, the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, and more.

    BT: What is it about Western wear and our community? It seems like there’s always been an attraction.

    MH: Western wear is just a fraction of what we offer, but we have a huge Country Western Community that attends Sundance Saloon dancing each and every week. So we offer boots, clothing, and more to support them.

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    Well, let’s face it. Western wear is pretty sexy. If you Google phrases such as “gay men into cowboy boots,” you’ll see what we mean. It’s hard not to take on a powerful, seductive swagger while wearing cowboy boots. In terms of women, pining over Patsy Cline or kd lang back in the day probably sealed that fate. But, as Holland indicates, if Western garb doesn’t float your particular clothing boat, something else at the store surely will. WOW is the right acronym.

    Special thanks to Bay Times photographer RINK.