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.
Crisp, juicy apples dangle from trees on Heavenly Hill Farm's rustic orchard, ripening until the moment they're plucked by visitors. The farm's owners also harvest the apples and bake them into pies or press them into cider. At certain times, they may sell other seasonal offerings such as pears or honey from the farm's beehives. Guests may also clamber onto hayrides or wander through a cornfield maze.
For more than 60 years, Bloom Bros. Supply has helped patrons tackle a slew of refurbishment projects with its expansive inventory of home-improvement supplies. For a better salsa-dance partner, fixer-uppers can utilize the inventory of power tools ($21+) and nails ($2+/lb.) to attach wooden limbs to a new broom or mop ($5–$15). Customers can treat thirsty friends to a half-full glass of water from a brand-new faucet ($12+) and thirsty enemies to a painting of a faucet brushed onto a wall with the store’s large collection of paints ($11+/gal.). The knowledgeable staff at Bloom Bros. Supply can also repair windows and screens, custom fit pipes, and re-key locks.
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.