Barber at work

Owner Seth Walker pauses while providing a haircut to Cory Hart last Thursday morning at Hometown Barber Shop in downtown Houston.

An experienced barber recently began cutting customers’ hair in downtown Houston.

Seth Walker opened his Hometown Barber Shop on Grand Avenue (across from the county administrative building) on March 22. A Houston native and graduate of Houston High School, Walker spent the last five years working at Modern Barber Shop, the oldest business in Rolla (that has been open for 92 years).

“I was one of three barbers there,” he said, “and it was always extremely busy. It’s one after another all the time. There was usually a line of people waiting in the morning and we had to lock the door to get out of there.”

Walker has an associate’s degree in criminal justice and worked in the law enforcement field for about 15 years. He then obtained a state barber’s license after completing a 1,000-hour course at the Academy of Hair Design in Springfield.

Barber pole

A classic barber pole greets customers at the entrance to Hometown Barber Shop.

While working in Rolla, Walker cut hair for people from numerous states and dozens of countries around the globe, in large part due to the major international connections of the city’s college, Missouri University of Science and Technology (a.k.a. Missouri S&T).

“I feel comfortable doing about any haircut,” Walker said, “whether it be traditional, older styles or more modern stuff. In Rolla, I kind of got thrown to the wolves, so to speak, so I can do about any of it.”

Walker is the son of Houston residents Rick and Sheila Walker. He said he should have a second barber working in his shop in the near future.

“There’s plenty of business here,” Walker said. “and my intention is to stay here. I thought it might be slower to start with, but I’ve stayed busy since the first day.”

Hometown Barber Shop is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. The business can be found on Facebook at hometownbarbershop417.

Homwtown Barber Shop ribbon cutting

The Houston Area Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Tuesday of last week at Hometown Barber Shop in downtown Houston. Holding the big scissors is the shop's proprietor, Seth Walker. Joining Walker were chamber executive director Angie Quinlan (on Walkers' left) and several chamber board members, along with relatives and friends.

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Doug Davison is a writer, photographer and newsroom assistant for the Houston Herald. Email him at

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