Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017
Mission San Juan, December 30, 2017

Monday, March 9, 2015

SAS Shoe Factory Tour - Tuesday, March 3, 2015

The ladies in our RV park love to get together for outings. On our last outing to the Menger Hotel for lunch, many ladies expressed an interest in the San Antonio Shoes (SAS) Shoe Factory Tour.

After our sign-up sheet was posted, the men expressed an interest in going, so they signed up too. In all, 21 people wanted to go.

On Tuesday, March 3, we carpooled four miles to SAS Shoe Factory and discovered a delightful surprise. The front of the building looks like a Wild West movie set.

Inside the General Store are gifts, penny candy, free fresh cookies brought to you while you shop, five-cent bags of popcorn, SAS shoes on sale, and clothing items. I see shopping in our immediate future!

We signed in at the desk, had a few minutes to use the restroom, and looked around a little. 12-person tour buses pulled up and we were loaded onto them ten at a time. They drove us to the manufacturing building. No photos are allowed inside where the shoes are made.

The first thing we learned is that only moccasin-type shoes are made at this facility. Other shoes are made at a factory in Del Rio, Texas. We watched as workers cut pattern pieces out of leather with die-cuts, folded the leather into shoe-like shapes, stitched by machine, hand-laced, pounded, and glued the shoes together by hand. Tubs full of different types and sizes of shoe molds made out of polypropylene (called "lasts") are used to shape the shoes. It's quite a fascinating process. Shoe seams are pounded with a mallet to make the seams are soft and supple (so the seams won't hurt your feet).

Once the shoes are made, they go to two quality control departments where the shoes are inspected. In other words, the shoes are inspected once, then sent to a second inspector to make sure the first one didn't miss any defects. If there is even a slight flaw in material or workmanship, the shoes are rejected to beings "seconds" and are sold in their factory stores, such as here and in Del Rio. (You can barely tell there's a defect!)

When we finished the tour, we had a half hour to shop for shoes, and other fun things, from their store. Then we carpooled to lunch. I'm not going to say much about lunch because it wasn't my favorite place.

Lynda and Norena (on the bench)
trying on shoes.
A wall behind the cash register.
 I have no idea how I got the following photo. All I can say is...

"Beam me up, Scotty!"
Buckets of penny candy
Farm scene inside the SAS store.
I love their company philosophy!
BettyAnn checking out SAS purses
Colorful shoe display in the SAS store
Love the displays in the SAS store
Also a car museum, of sorts

The group heading out with purchases.
After our lunch at my un-favorite place, we made it back to the RV park, some of us much later than others due to a service SNAFU at the restaurant.

All in all, though, we had a very good time. We will definitely take out-of-town guests to SAS Shoe Factory.

Bowie the box troll
Travel Bug out.


  1. Wow...I never would have thought of going there. Thank you for sharing...

  2. I think i would love to go see that next time we are in the area!~ Seeing things made IN AMERICA is a real treat, and I would love to buy a pair after seeing them made. Neato!
    KarenInTheWoods and Steveio
    (Blog) RVing: The USA Is Our Big Backyard

    1. I plan to go back to shop for shoes when I have more time. So many pairs, so little time!


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