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Sneaker Dreams come true in downtown Pocomoke City

(Nov. 24, 2016) Daniel LaMontagne left teaching high school math behind, for now, to do what a lot of serious hobbyists wish they could do — open a store dedicated to their passion in order to devote themselves to it full time.
LaMontagne’s passion is sneakers, and has been with him for a long time.
“I was born in 1985 when sneaker culture really took off, with Run DMC’s “My Adidas” and Michael Jordan took Nike to the next level,” he said. “I love reminiscing about those days.”
His personal collection includes about 100 pairs, give or take the several shoes now in stock at his downtown Pocomoke City store, Sneaker Dreams.
Open for about a month now, the store features a tiny fraction of what LaMontagne envisions as the eventual end product of his passion.
“I want to get to 400 pairs of sneakers at least, and have ten times the amount of clothes I do right now,” he said. “It’s hard to keep the clothes in stock, because I’m selling them so cheap right now.”
More clothes are due in soon he said, with some local vendors providing the goods.
LaMontagne set up Sneaker Dreams as a buy-sell-trade shop, where customers can trade in their own kicks for store credit, and then use that credit towards another purchase.
“I like the shoes to be about an 8/10 as far as condition, but will make exceptions,” he said.
LaMontagne, a native of New York City, was looking to move closer to relatives in the Virginia Beach area and away from the high cost of living the city requires. He eventually landed a job on the lower shore of Virginia, but decided it wasn’t a good fit. One evening, hanging around downtown Pocomoke City with his fiancée and enjoying a sandwich, he said he had an epiphany.
“We were sitting on the bench outside of X-O Beanery, and I just thought how beautiful it was down here,” he said. “So I asked about one of the empty stores here. Rent is cheap, so I decided to go for it.”
He said his goal is to get the shop to where he wants it to be, and then he might consider a return to teaching, but he’s in no rush.
“It’s nice not having people tell me what to do. I find myself very easy to work for,” he said. “Do I miss the kids, do I miss teaching? Yes. But it’s a cool, unique perspective here too. People feel they can be authentic here.”
Right now Sneaker Dreams is heavy on the brand names: Nike, Asics, Puma, Saucony, and exclusively stocks sneakers — no loafers or Dr. Marten’s here. However, the selection favors higher-end sneakers and their lower-cost counterparts — there’s not a lot of middle of the road styles yet.
“I do special orders though too. I’m also back and forth to New York all the time, and I know sellers in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, the whole way,” he said.
The store is set to take on a sports theme, with televisions in the back just waiting to be installed.
“We’re going to have all the games on. I’m also going to hook up my PlayStation 4 and have that going before long too,” he said.