Since 1950, Gale’s Garden Center has spruced up local gardens with a variety of greenery, garden tools, and lawn décor. Every spring, their nursery overflows with locally grown yellow forsythia shrubs and pale pink weeping cherry trees. After entering, you can find helpful staff members scattered among the hydrangeas and fruit trees; they're ready to answer any questions about spring gardening for cool-weather plants. The store strives to stay up to date with the latest gardening wares. Organic lawn-care products keep lawns lush without using harsh toxins, and native plants become low-maintenance housing for birds, butterflies, and migratory lawn gnomes.
Since 1988, Pet Supplies Plus has welcomed millions of furry critters of every stripe—from llamas and monkeys to potbellied pigs—into their animal-friendly stores. The shop is designed so that both pets and their owners can easily navigate the inventory of more than 10,000 items. Wide aisles give leashed pups enough room to roam, colorful signage keeps shoppers moving in the right direction, and low shelves allow dogs to sniff out their preferred brand of rawhide chew. A self-serve dog wash enables guests to scrub their canine companions' coats to a youthful, puppy-like shine, whereas grooming services enlist professionals to tackle tougher jobs, such as brushing out matted fur or convincing dalmatians to stop mixing white and black after Labor Day.
In 1965, Popular Mechanics ran a small classified ad for Brookstone, a new catalog company that packed its pages with functional products and detail-oriented descriptions. Brookstone quickly expanded to meet the high demand for its collection of “hard-to-find tools,” and opened the door to its first retail location in 1973. Today, Brookstone’s more than 300 nationwide retail locations allow customers to test-drive its ever-growing lineup of interesting products, which range from Bluetooth-enabled massage chairs to power adapters designed for international travelers and their electronic passports. Staying true to its roots as a catalog company, Brookstone houses an even larger selection of products, each waiting patiently to be shipped, on its website.