LAS CRUCES, N.M. — Downtown Las Cruces continues growing and is welcoming a new specialty running store this week on Main Street.
Run Culture,  the first of its kind specialty running store in Las Cruces, opened on Sunday and will now serve area runners with a convenient location next to the Rio Grande Theatre.
"It's long overdue for Las Cruces," said longtime runner Randy Castellano. "I'll probably start buying my shoes here now."
The store fills a void for customers who seek customized advice and specific products.
Catellano said he would normally buy shoes in Albuquerque when he made the trip to visit family because Las Cruces didn't have a specialty store.
"I like people who are runners that run in the shoes and know the shoes," Castellano said. "They understand what I'm saying because we talk the same language."
Run Culture  is staffed with experienced running coaches and owner Carlos Rivas has worked for the top running shoe companies.
That experience translates into good customer service with extensive knowledge on the products in the store.
"We're trying to find out what's best right now," Rivas said of the approach in selling running shoes.
He added with the nearest store in El Paso, it made sense to open in Las Cruces.
After looking at several potential locations throughout the city, he said he decided downtown would be the best fit.
"This is the only location that had soul and heart to it," Rivas said. "It's thriving."
Carrie La Tour, executive director of the Downtown Las Cruces Partnership , said after more than 40 years closed to traffic it really took the street reopening for the area to take off.
Now Main Street boasts a weekly Farmers and Crafts Market Wednesdays and Saturdays and year-round events like the Las Cruces Country Music Festival.
"I can market this street to an entire region and there's very few places that can do that," she said.
La Tour said downtown is only five minutes away from about 1600 business employing 12,000 workers and about about ten minutes away from the rest of the population.
That's why stores like Run Culture are drawn to the area with the increase in foot traffic.
"We want to be here not only for the running community but for the downtown community," Rivas said.
221. N. MAIN STREET