Mainstay in Mac: Supplying auto parts since 1966

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Business Feature: Mac Auto Supply

By Ty Walker, Contributing Writer
Photos by Stephanie Baker

The owners Of Mac Auto Supply

There’s an old proverb of unknown origin that says, “Only three things in life are certain: birth, death and change.”

Add Carquest Auto Parts Mac Auto Supply to the list. For over a half century, since 1966 — that’s 57 years to be exact — the Barnes family name has been the heartbeat of the second generation McMinnville business.

When he was a teenager, Kurt Barnes started working for his father, Trent Barnes, stocking the shelves and working the counter at Mac Auto. Kurt learned the business fast and by age 22 bought the auto parts store from his dad in 1984.

Next year will mark the 40th anniversary since Kurt has taken over the business. With a grown son and stepson in line to follow their father’s footsteps, a third generation of Barnes ownership is almost certain.

Over the years, Kurt has seen change and watched Mac Auto Parts grow along with the booming auto industry. He expanded into a second building to make room to carry parts from a growing list of manufacturers. He also counts on the help of 12 employees, which include his sons, to keep up with the demand.

“The amount of cars and parts for those cars that you need to have stocked,” Kurt said. “It used to just be Ford, Chevy, Chrysler. That was about it. Then Datsun and Toyota came in a little bit. Now there are so many parts, so many manufacturers out there.”

So what’s Mac Auto Part’s secret to longevity and success? Kurt said it’s all about customer service. That’s what brings customers back and become regulars.

“Taking care of customers,” Kurt said. “We’ve got regular customers I’ve known since I was a kid. Just make sure you keep focused on customer service and they’ll be loyal to you.”

When he’s not busy keeping the family business thriving, you might find him playing golf with his son, Gabe, at Michelbook Golf Course in McMinnville, where he’s been a regular customer for 30 years.

Carquest Auto Parts – Mac Auto Supply is located at 945 N.E. Baker St., McMinnville. Hours are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday.