Ken Bennett is selling the historic building on Michigan Avenue and closing the Hair Shed at the end of the month.   He’s been cutting hair in almost the same spot in downtown Battle Creek for more than 50 years.  He’s been cutting mine for close to 20 of those.

Ken started cutting hair at Mr. Lynn’s Hair Shop downtown and got his state barber license.  It was one of eight downtown barbershops.   He opened his own shop in 1970 at 8 South Monroe Street and five years later, bought the building at 70 East Michigan. On June first, there won’t be any traditional “barber shops” left in downtown Battle Creek.

Inside the Hair Shed-TSM photo

A farm boy from Litchfield, Ken started cutting hair in the Navy in 1963, and decided to go to barber school and make a career of it.

There are a lot of reasons why so many people in Battle Creek have stuck with Ken for decades.   First, he’s an artist and takes his craft very seriously.  He considers the science of hair, from different types and thicknesses of it, to chemicals and coloration, proper equipment, state regulations, and hair styles.   He certainly has a passion for it.

Another reason is that he’s always been involved in the community and a big cheerleader of our downtown district. He says that’s something they stressed in barber school way back in the 60’s.   He cut the hair of troubled kids at Starr Commonwealth for decades, and continues to cut hair at the Calhoun County Jail.   That can be a tough crowd to please, but not for Ken.  He’s taken the time to learn what people want, and the best way to deliver it.  He says he’ll continue to cut hair at the jail

And, obviously, he’s a great conversationalist. And he never abandoned his farm roots, working as a 4H leader, serving on the Calhoun County Fair Board, and keeping and training horses until just recently.

The Hair Shed has also been a leader in serving cancer patients who have lost their hair due to treatments.  The shop has quite a reputation when it comes the wigs.

Stop in Saturday May 11th at Riverside Golf Club for the open house and wish Ken Bennett well!   He says he’ll take most of the summer off, but could well end up cutting a few heads here and there, come next fall.

  • What: Retirement Open House for Ken Bennett, owner of “The Hair Shed
  • Where: Riverside Golf Club, 245 East Columbia, Battle Creek.
  • When: Saturday May 11th, 1pm-3:30pm
  • Who: The whole community and anybody lucky enough to have a barber like Ken Bennett
Hair Shed, 70 East Michigan, TSM