The Aquarium Shop unleashes an assortment of aquatic denizens on land-living lifeforms, like a garage sale held by King Poseidon to raise money for repairs to his seahorse-powered cruiser. Items include saltwater, freshwater, and pond merchandise, complete with pond fish ($5–$25), pond plants ($5–$25), pond food ($10–$50), tropical fish ($2–$30), saltwater fish ($5–$100), and live rock ($8 per lb.). Find actors for your all-koi version of Hamlet, pick up an African cichlid for prom-night punch-bowl pranks, or buy coral with which to dress up in doll's clothing and play tea party. The Aquarium Shop also has a large variety of tanks in stock for fish owners looking to update the digs of their deep-dwelling dorsalled doppelgangers.
Family patriarch Nordy Rockler opened the doors of his first store in 1954 to supply his fellow craftsmen with knowledge, friendly advice, and a large selection of tools for at-home woodworking projects. Now, the chain of retail outlets brims with more than 20,000 tools and specialized woodworking equipment. Next to a steely rainbow of hinges, casters, and screws, a supply of lumber and exotic hardwoods provides planks for building tree houses or just leaving around as a warning to uncooperative trees. The tenor buzz of power tools operated by newly knowledgeable guests drifts from educational sessions on operating equipment and woodworking.
After years focused on human health and nutrition while working in the grocery business, Ray Hesano grew frustrated that he couldn’t find similarly wholesome food for his pets. Today, his partner and nephew Mike Palmer fills Premier Pet Supply’s shelves with the same natural and holistic pet food that once eluded him. The store’s ample selection—which has been lauded by Hour Detroit magazine, CityVoters, and Click On Detroit—includes more than 65 varieties of dog food and 75 brands of treats from brands such as Canine Caviar, Zuke’s, and Charlee Bear. Cat food from Natural Balance, Primal Frozen Raw, and dozens more brands imbues felines with the energy to paw, climb, and glare at the store’s array of toys and furniture. Food for other animals, from hamsters to fish and deer, keeps every menagerie sated.
Premier Pet Supply takes care of humans as well, hosting annual customer-appreciation days that treat them to discounts, magic acts, and photo booths. In addition, with help from rescue groups, the store has matched more than 4,000 adoptable dogs and cats with happy new homes.
With more than 3,000 products in stock and learned clerks, Organic America infuses would-be green thumbs with the supplies and skills to bolster indoor and outdoor gardens. The staff, which includes professional farmers and retired Swamp Things, educates clientele with seminars and in-store conversation. Weekly workshops detail the essential techniques necessary for successful organic or hydroponic harvests, including crop rotation and biological pest control. Behind the store's low-slung façade, verdant displays show the life cycle of healthy plants as they mature from seeds to flowers and eventually to parade floats.