The end of an era in Westborough

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Longtime barber to retire after nearly half a century in downtown area

By Bonnie Adams, Managing Editor

Dave Kwiatkowski Photo/Bonnie Adams
Dave Kwiatkowski
Photo/Bonnie Adams

Westborough – For nearly 50 years, Dave Kwiatkowski has been cutting hair, in his small salon, Dave’s Colonial Barber Shop, at 16 South St., right off the rotary in Westborough’s downtown. But now, as he approaches his 75th birthday, Kwiatkowski has decided to hang up his barber shears, and ease on into retirement.

“It’s time,” he said of the decision. “I want to be able to enjoy some time with [his wife of 49 years, Roseann], travel a bit, maybe play some more golf.”

Kwiatkowski, who now lives in Milford, grew up in Webster and decided to pursue a career as a barber, on the advice of his father. After he trained in Boston he searched for a space to set up his shop, eventually landing in Westborough. And in that spot, he stayed, taking care of the hair needs of his many customers, many who have been coming to him nearly as long as he has been there.

It is those customers, he said, that made his decision to retire a difficult one.

“Because really, I have no ‘customers’, they are more than that, they are dear friends,” he said. “I have had a great, great career. It’s all because of them. “

Kwiatkowski will be turning the business over to a young man who currently works for him part time, Donnie Cook. He plans on working himself, right up until Saturday, Dec. 29. (He currently works Tuesdays and Thursdays, 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturdays, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

“A lot of customers have stopped in once they heard the news and I would love to see others,” Kwiatkowski said. “Because like I said, these are my friends.”