NJ Skate Shop releases pair of special-edition Vans sneakers to pay homage to town's brick-making roots

Some sneaker fans lined up at 1 a.m. – 10 hours early – outside the NJ Skate Shop in New Brunswick last weekend for the release of a new sneaker with some Garden State history – a pair of brick-red Vans.
The sneakers are an homage to the great town of Sayreville. Its clay deposits made it home to one of the largest brickworks in the United States – the Sayre and Fisher Company. The company sat in New Jersey from 1850 until 1970. The shoes even have a brick pattern in the fabric.
The special edition Vans were the brainchild of NJ Skate Shop owners Chris Nieratko, a Sayreville native, and Steve Lenardo, who moved there from Hudson County when he was in eighth grade and found a passion for skateboarding.
“That’s really, for me, why it’s so special to pay homage for me to a town that got me into what I truly love,” Lenardo says.
While Sayre and Fisher bricks were used to build the Empire State Building and the base of the Statue of Liberty, the story on the box that the sneakers come in remind skateboarders that many of their favorite skate spots were made of bricks from the Sayreville clay pits.
The first batch of around 700 pairs of the Sayreville Vans is just about gone. They were sold in NJ Skate Shops in New Brunswick and Jersey City. About five dozen skateboard and sneaker shops nationwide will get them this weekend.