While there’s never a bad time to go, it seems as though summer sends people flocking to Frankenmuth for fried chicken and family fun, making this a great time to recommend a retailer there that spotlights goods made in our state. In the center of town on Main Street, just south of the Cass River, lies the River Place Shops. That outdoor shopping area is home to this month’s shop worth a stop, aptly named The Michigan Shoppe.
The charming exterior is in keeping with the architectural theme of Michigan’s Little Bavaria, but inside, it’s all about the Great Lakes State. Owners Jon and Tracey Burroughs have curated an expansive collection of items, and, as in most shops like theirs, the selection is always changing. Theirs is a far more spacious environment than most shops featuring local products, so the displays are large and attractive.
Upon entering, you’ll find a fair amount of food options. Whether you’re looking for a quick snack, a cold pop, gourmet foods, or a sweet fix, like Mackinac fudge, you’ll find options here.
There is also an abundance of home and cottage décor. Amazing photographs can be purchased to showcase favorite sights around the state. The shop is chalk full of cool signage, wall hangings, pillows, and candles to add lovely accents to a cabin or house.
If you’re into entertaining, there is also one of the larger collections of local serving dishes, cutting boards, and glassware anywhere in the state. Many of these items would make great gifts for the holidays, a new home, or even a wedding.
Michigan authors and illustrators are well represented too, especially with regard to children’s books. Legend of Sleeping Bear, Millie and the Moon, and Benson’s Adventures in Michigan, are just a few of the popular titles that will delight young readers.
Of course, no Michigan-themed shop would be complete without an ample collection of wearable pride. Not only are there hats, tees, and hoodies in a variety of sizes and styles for kiddies as well as adults, there is also a nice jewelry collection. Of particular note, are the Petoskey Stones. They are available in already formed jewelry, but also in a plethora of shapes and sizes that enable the buyer to make something on their own.
Once you’re done perusing The Michigan Shoppe, be sure to explore a couple of other uniquely Michigan businesses also located among the River Place Shops.
Cherry Republic is an amazing store dedicated almost entirely to the delicious fruit with which it shares a name. There are over 170 cherry-licious products including dried fruits, jams, chocolate-covered, trail mixes, condiments, cookies, and even cherry sausage. The store has a rustic northern vibe, and the colors, displays, and candy will make kids happy to be shopping.
If you prefer to discover a more adult line of products, then venture into the Grand Traverse Distillery tasting room. The company makes excellent whiskeys, vodkas, gins, and even a rum. Most of the products are made from locally-grown ingredients in their Traverse City distillery.
When you’re done shopping, you can take a cruise along the Cass River on the Bavarian Belle Riverboat, which docks at the waterfall adjacent to the outdoor mall.
If you’re hungry, take a quick jaunt across the bridge, and you’ll find yourself at either of two iconic restaurants famous for their fried chicken: Zehnder’s or Bavarian Inn. For a particularly local experience, try Michigan on Main. This more recent addition to the Bavarian Inn serves up scrumptious farm to table fare and has an excellent selection of local brews. If you’re a huge beer connoisseur, you can also head a few blocks north to Frankenmuth Brewery, where they’ll serve you a pint, and can even tell you just how they made it.
The Michigan Shoppe is open daily from 10am-9pm. It is located at the northeast entrance of the River Place Shops at 925 S Main St, Frankenmuth, MI 48734.
The store is currently seeking artistic consigners to add to their inventory. If interested, send an email to Jon via firstname.lastname@example.org with the words “consignment inquiry” in the subject line. Be sure to include pictures and prices you need for the item.
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