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From spurs and tack to creative hat racks, shoppers can find more than what they’d expect at longtime Artesia business Bennie’s Western Wear, voted Best Local Shop in this year’s Best of Artesia contest. (Nancy Dunn - For the Daily Press)

From spurs and tack to creative hat racks, shoppers can find more than what they’d expect at longtime Artesia business Bennie’s Western Wear, voted Best Local Shop in this year’s Best of Artesia contest. (Nancy Dunn – For the Daily Press)

Have you visited Bennie’s Western Wear lately?

If your answer is “no,” then you may find yourself constantly saying, “I didn’t know they had that here!” — as I did during a recent visit!

Bennie’s Western Wear opened in 1947, and they built their current location in 1961. The store has always been a family affair — Bennie and Mildred Mason raised their two children in the store (literally), and their son Jimmy and his son Clay run it today.

Bennie’s Western Wear is that perfect blend of traditional and modern; their traditional customer service values mean that each customer is greeted like a long-lost friend whether the staff knows you or not (but they probably do), and they still carry customer charge accounts.

At the same time, the store has changed with the times, and they have a website now: www.bennieswesternwear.com.

This is the place that has it all, not unlike the general stores of the past. They sell clothes for men, women and children, all kinds of work clothes, including flame-retardant gear, GREAT boots, firearms and ammunition, tack… it’s fun to walk through and see what else is there: suspenders in several colors, spurs and bits, some great jewelry (I did not leave empty-handed), purses, perfume, watches, and toys.

What I didn’t expect to see: vintage movie posters! Blingy sandals and flipflops for women, cool sunglasses, men’s dress jackets and dusters, biker jackets/vests/chaps/glove/saddlebags, and home décor items.

Bennie’s Western Wear celebrates the National Day of the Cowboy every year in late July — it coincides with their store’s anniversary. 2017 will be Bennie’s 70th anniversary, so it’s safe to predict that there will be a nice celebration happening then.

But don’t wait until then to go see what you can find in Bennie’s — you may be surprised, too!