Like he did when the reporter/photographer came to his shop for a haircut with his dad in the 1970s, Country Squire Barbers and Stylists owner Ted Enns torments Roger Knox with the end-of-haircut vacuum. Enns is still cutting hair (and tormenting Knox) at his 29th Street shop at age 86. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

Vernon barber still cutting along at 86

Ted Enns is on-call at Country Squire Barbers and Stylists, the shop he founded in 1967

He still owns half the business but at age 86, Ted Enns has, er, clipped his hours somewhat.

The longtime Vernon barber, half-owner of Country Squire Barbers and Stylists on 29th Street a block south of the Village Green Centre, sits at his Alexis Park home he shares with wife Muriel, and when the phone rings asking him to come to the shop he founded in 1967, he goes.

“I’m on the spare board now,” laughed Enns, who has never retired and who remembers a reporter coming to his shop as a kid with his dad, and laughs as he fondly remembers tormenting the child with his shop’s vacuum cleaner, used to get all the loose hairs off the head at the end of a cut.

“I’m cutting fourth generations now. I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of amazing people come to my shop. They still want me (to cut their hair). If I’m there, they ask for me and they’ll wait for me to finish. It doesn’t happen as often now. People will only wait for a barber for so long.”

Originally from Chilliwack, Enns was working making jam for Canada Packers in his hometown when he hurt his back lifting the 100-pound boxes of jam. Married with two young sons, Enns was cutting his boys’ hair “out of necessity,” to save a dollar when Muriel encouraged him to become a barber full time.

He enrolled in the Moler Barber School in Vancouver and, six months later, he moved the family to Kamloops, where a spot in a local shop opened up.

In February of 1967, Enns was curling in a bonspiel in Kamloops and playing against his uncle, a Vernon real estate company manager, who had the late Pete Guidi, owner of Butcher Boys, on his team. After the game, the teams went back to their hotel for refreshments which is when Enns’ uncle convinced Guidi to let Enns open his own shop in the old BX Motors garage located on the Butcher Boys property.

He named the shop Country Squire after the 1965 station wagon he drove his family to their new North Okanagan home in. He’s worked in Vernon for the past 52 years.

“I remember my first customer. I don’t remember his name but I can see his face. He was a retired guy living in the BX,” said Enns. “The second customer owned a gravel pit down below (Pleasant Valley Road). I can’t remember his name, either.”

READ MORE: North Okanagan Light A Bulb campaign nears goal

Enns opened from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and was open six days a week. His lone day off was Thursday in order that he could attend auctions at Valley Auction in Spallumcheen, as he owned acreage in Lavington.

He stayed at the old BX Motors site until 1985 when he moved from the Butcher Boys location due to the grocery store renovating, and opened in its present location. Enns worked by himself for another year before finally hiring some help as business as booming.

“I hired a young lady from Merrit named Laurie, who had just graduated from barber school,” said Enns, who later added his son, Cal, to the roster. Cal still works at the shop and is responsible for cutting Enns’ hair.

“He owes me,” laughs Enns.

Business is still going strong at Country Squire. There are seven barbers on the list, counting Enns, and there’s no sign of the business slowing down.

“It’s still going very well,” said Enns. “If you have good barbers, that’s the key.”

Enns has no plans to retire as long as his health is good.

“If I can make it up the ramp (into the shop), I’m still going to be cutting hair,” said Enns. “And my back is fine.”

Country Squire is open Monday to Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. for full shaves, hair and razor cuts.


@VernonNews
roger@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Vernon’s Ted Enns, founder of the Country Squires Barbers and Stylists shop on 29th Street, is still cutting heads at age 86. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

At age 86, and with the customer playing with his phone, Country Squire Barbers and Stylists founder Ted Enns (right) continues to work merrily along. Enns has been cutting hair in Vernon since he opened his shop at the back of Butchers Boys’ parking lot, the old BX Motors garage building, in 1967. (Roger Knox - Morning Star)

Just Posted

UPDATE: Suspicion ruled out in Vernon golf course fire

Blaze causes significant damage to driving range hut

WATCH: Lavington man chains himself to tree as crews clear space for child care centre

Crews began work clearing space for a new facility Thursday, Aug. 6

Tacos added to Vernon food truck lineup

Mi Taqueria Mexican Cantina opened Aug. 5 at the Village Green Hotel parking lot

Vernon police search for owner of lost iPhone

Concerned citizen turns phone into RCMP

British Columbians worried as end of COVID-19 rental supplement looms

Single mom struggles as supplement was her saving grace

B.C. would not send students back to school if there was ‘overwhelming risk’: Horgan

Plan has left many parents across the province worried about their children’s safety

Mitchell’s Musings: Hockey’s comeback begins in earnest in August

Sports is back. Well, at least sports in a bubble is back.… Continue reading

Canucks blank Wild 3-0, take series lead in penalty-filled NHL qualifying clash

Jacob Markstrom stops 27 shots to lead Vancouver past Minnesota

Ryga Arts Festival to include live events

Arts festival in Summerland will feature live and online performances

VIDEO: A B.C business used robots to bring down concrete walls

Walco Industries is the only firm on Vancouver Island to use specialized robots for hydro-demolition

As CERB winds down, labour group asks Liberals to rethink EI

The government estimates four million people will be moved onto EI after CERB ends

Highway 3 closed south of Princeton after vehicle incident

There is currently no detour, Drive BC stated, but crews are on scene

South Okanagan sees increase in real estate activity

More single family homes sold at higher prices when compared with a year ago

Most Read