If you’re into sneaker culture, Philly is apparently the right place to be.
Complex magazine named Philadelphia one of the 15 best sneaker cities in the world, and on Thursday a shop in Old City was one of only two in-store locations where sneakerheads could pick up a highly-anticipated launch from rapper Pusha T.
The special “Ozweego” shoe, a collaboration with Adidas, was on sale for just $7.57 — an homage to the rapper’s Virginia Beach hometown, with its 757 area code.
Pusha, born Terrence Thornton, currently owns two shoe stores under the Creme 321 brand: one at 2nd and Race, which opened in June, and another in Norfolk, Va. They were the exclusive locations to get the Ozweego, part of the Adidas “friends and family” collection — which sold out within hours.
Lines stretched down the block outside the Philly store all morning. According to employees, Creme 321 started selling the shoe at 9:30 a.m., and it was sold out by about noon.
Anticipation for the sneaker started in April when Pusha shared a peek at his upcoming sneaker collab on Instagram. He teased the white-on-white mesh and leather ode to the rapper’s favorite subject, cocaine, and even nicknamed it “Nose Candy Mandy.”
Things went silent until Tuesday, when the rapper posted a short Instagram video saying merely “stay tuned.”
Staff at the store said customers lined up less than a minute after the rapper’s Thursday Instagram post, and had been camping out near the store since Tuesday.
Other sneaker launches in Philadelphia have brought on similar frenzies. Ubiq caused a stir when it released a cheesesteak-inspired collab in 2017. This year, just 10 celebrity fans got a pair of Ubiq’s 76ers-themed Air Jordans. And the Philly-based sneaker boutique Villa, now owned by DTLR, has had its fair share of exclusive sneaker drops, including a series of sneaks in collaboration with rapper Fabolous.
Staff at Creme 321 said they didn’t think the shop would get any more Ozweegos in stock — ever.
Pusha T shared on Twitter Thursday afternoon that a few pairs were available online for $150, and though store staff was unable to give an exact count, Philly’s Creme location sold less than 200 pairs.