This is the latest stop in the series 101 Things To Do. Each week through December 2020, we will select one place or activity around the region to highlight.
It’s more than just a boot. It’s the world’s biggest boot.
It stands in Red Wing Shoes’ flagship store on Main Street in Red Wing. It is 20 feet long and 16 feet high. It is size 638 ½ D.
It was built in 2005 to celebrate the company’s 100th anniversary. Several retirees came back to produce the monster boot, according to store manager Dori Mann.
“People are in awe of the big boot and how big it actually is,” Mann said. “We have a selfie machine by the boot, so you can take a selfie and send it to your email or send it to your phone. That is pretty cool.”
Near the big boot, a flight of stairs leads visitors to the Wall of Fame, a collection of boots sent in by customers who wore them for years or decades.
“This is dedicated to our consumers that wear our boots forever and a day and all the different stories and the kind of work that they do in those boots,” Mann said.
Last March, the store honored five new members of the Wall of Fame. The company flew them and their families in to attend a celebration and add their boots to the wall. Each pair of boots is the story of a life, a career, and the boots that were part of it.
The rest of the second floor is a museum of Red Wing Shoes, showing the many models of shoes and boots that the company has produced from 1905 to the present.
“Visitors love the museum,” Mann said. “It's something that they can go up and check out.”
One display in the museum illustrates the steps of constructing a boot from cutting and stitching to placing the eyelets and sole.
“Those are the steps of how they make the 877, the original which is like the big boot,” Mann said.
“People come from all over the place and bring their friends and family to see the museum and the boot and the store,” Mann said.. “We have tourists that have been here multiple times. They love to come in here and check out these things.”
If you go...
Name: The World’s Biggest Boot
Address: 315 Main St., Red Wing, Minn.
Hours: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday; 11 a.m. to p.m. Sunday