Tucked away on the corner of 6600 Gratz St. is Zafir’s Barber Shop. This shop opened in April 2011, making it a new place right off Ogontz Avenue.
Head barber Zafir Khalilulahh, 56, has been cutting hair for 36 years. Khalilulahh’s first name not only plays a role in the shop’s identity but also simultaneously explains its impact on the surrounding area.
There are a lot of barber shops around West Oak Lane, but Khalilulahh spoke confidently about his shop and the barbers inside who hold their own. The other three barbers at the shop do their best to help Khalilulahh send out a positive message within the community.
“We are different because we talk positively to the youth. We like to talk to kids about growing up the right way,” Khalilulahh said. “We always encourage them to go to school, stay in school, and some kids even come back at the end of the day to show us their grades. We also like to ask the kids that come in to tell us something that they learned from class and if they do we discount their haircut.”
The shop is open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day of the week. When asked to explain the progress of his shop after one year of business, Khalilulahh used the word excellent.
“We see ourselves excelling in the things that we do. We want to continue to positively influence the youth and help and make a difference within the area,” Khalilulahh said with a smile.