Bob’s Barber Shop continues to serve

When the YMCA wanted a barber shop two ambitious friends saw their opportunity. Bob Krebsbach and a friend founded the company, naming it Bob and Frank’s Barber Shop. Frank passed away, and another friend filled in, changing the company name to Bob and Earl’s Barber Shop.

The company, as its own entity, has stuck around through the YMCA building’s transition into Straz Tower for Marquette University. Earl was injured in a hunting accident and could no longer work, and the shop’s name was shortened to Bob’s. In addition to haircuts, other barber services, back massages and even shoe-shining service were once offered.

Since Krebsbach’s death Jan. 22 last year, his daughter Christal SanFelippo has taken ownership of the 55-year-old company. Keeping the tradition strong, her niece Taylor Krebsbach works as a barber there as well.

Jenny Zastrow, a barber at Bob’s who met Christal at her first hair styling job, said that the barber shop is kind of hidden, and many students aren’t aware of its existence.

“We have actually had (students) come in, like seniors, (and they said) ‘I never knew there was a barber shop here,’” Zastrow said.

She also noted that, conversely, some customers will get all the members of their residence hall floor to come to the barber shop because word has spread about the business.

Zastrow said that she thinks Bob’s Barber Shop will see more business after the physical therapy center is built next door, on the south side.

The company has never done much advertising; Zastrow said that Bob’s Barber Shop used to post flyers in the residence halls and would put brochures in freshman orientation packets but now relies on word of mouth. The business is not looking to franchise or expand in any way.

“We like doing just what we’re doing,” Zastrow said.

Professors, The Rev. Wild and other Jesuits come in to the barbershop.

“Having those guys come in all the time is a lot of fun,” Zastrow said “(We) always have new customers coming in, from all over the world.”

Bob’s Barbershop has some female customers, but for the most part, it’s men looking for a trim.

“We don’t do any of the shampooing or blow-drying, it’s just a haircut,” Zastrow said. “I’ll get girls that have just the ends cut off of their hair, (and) it’s very simple.”

“It’s quick, it’s not far away, (and) it’s not expensive,” said Liam Fruzyna, a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences, Straz resident and customer of Bob’s Barbershop. “The back massage is really nice.”

Dante Gonzalez, also a freshman in the College of Arts & Sciences and Straz resident, said that Bob’s Barbershop has a very friendly environment, is comfortable and the barbers provide good haircuts.

“I feel fresh afterwards,” Gonzalez said. “I’ll probably go there for my next haircut.”