Eastbay was founded in 1980 when high-school runners, coaches, and lifelong friends Art Juedes and Rick Gering found themselves unsatisfied with the selection of running shoes available for athletes around their Wausau, Wisconsin, hometown. The pair knew that for small town athletes, getting the right running shoes usually meant traveling long distances. Their idea? Bring the shoes directly to the athletes. With little more than $7,000 worth of running shoes and a dream, the pair took to the road in sweats and t-shirts to set up shoe clinics around Central Wisconsin. At each stop, they educated athletes and coaches on the benefits of the shoes and provided descriptive price lists. The two of them knew when athletes look good, they play even better, so, for almost two decades, they gave coaches the opportunity to supply their teams with the latest styles. Like any local business, there were risks and hard times, but their hard work and dedication laid the foundation for Eastbay.