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As sneakerheads step out in Air Jordans, some Scottsdale clubs are putting their foot down

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 - 12:14pm
Updated: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 - 1:23pm

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Many Worlds Nike Air Jordan sneakers Phoenix
Susan Wong/Cronkite News
Many Worlds, a streetwear and shoe store in Phoenix, caters to sneakerheads.

A lot of people go crazy over fashion, but nothing has quite the kind of cult following that sneakers do.

Things like Air Jordans, Nike Air Force 1s — “sneakerheads” will spend hundreds of dollars on the latest “drops” of these kinds of shoes, and they’ll sometimes go to extreme lengths to keep their shoes looking fresh.

But a recent story reported by Arizona State University journalism students at Cronkite News says those retro basketball sneakers can keep you out of many of Scottsdale’s most popular nightclubs. And many think the reasoning is racially motivated.

Air Jordan 1 Retro High University Blue
Susan Wong/Cronkite News
A typical pair of Air Jordan 1 high tops, like the Retro High University Blue, goes for about $150 on Nike’s website.

Kevin Redfern reported the story for Cronkite News, and in it, he interviewed Luis Torres, a self-proclaimed sneakerhead and sneaker journalist in the Valley. 

The Show spoke with both of them about the story and the intersection of fashion and race that sneaker culture often represents.

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