Stocking shelves with new and recycled duds since 1971, Ragstock fortifies wardrobes with a storefront brimming with new and recycled men's and women's clothing and accessories. In addition to mainstream garments, stores sling eclectic outfit accouterments such as neon suspenders ($9.99) and thick-rimmed spectacles ($4.99+) that allow shoppers to evoke the air of literature professors without blithely quoting Joyce.
Gander Mountain Academy updates its lessons in gun safety, handling, and marksmanship with virtual shooting technology that was once only available to military and law-enforcement agencies. The ladies-only basic fundamentals class gives women a foundation in the mechanics of handguns and how to use them safely. Students start by winnowing down the right type of gun for their needs, be they self-defense, hunting, or reclaiming the garage from infestations of gremlins. Next, instructors with callused trigger fingers explain the safety rules of handguns, compare ammunition options, and demonstrate proper grip, stance, and trigger control.
The whimsical rhymes and quirky cartoons coloring most greeting cards are occasionally amusing, but their stock sentiments and broad jokes engender little intimacy. Pear Tree Greetings curates a deeper connection by stocking an online store with hundreds of customizable greeting-card designs, nearly all of which are constructed from 100% post-consumer materials. Uploaded photos personalize traditional cards or unconventional booklets shaped like strings of holiday lights, which landed Pear Tree in the pages of the Wall Street Journal. Cards come printed on a 100-pound matte card stock that can be coupled with magnets, napkins, and address labels celebrating birthdays, graduations, and weddings. Since there’s no charge for double-side printing, graduation announcements can easily detail party logistics and wedding invitations can list the funniest things to shout when the officiant asks if anyone has objections.
Action Packed Paintball’s arsenal of combat settings include two outdoor and two indoor locations. Each outdoor field features an urban combat course that conceals opponents behind plywood structures, and a speedball course dotted with inflatable obstacles. After differences are settled on the field, outdoor combatants can retreat to onsite grilling and picnic areas. For those who prefer indoor face-offs, Action Packed Paintball keeps its well-lit Maple Plain location, like the well-orchestrated battles of the Gallic Wars, at a steady 70 degrees year-round. The location’s course is set up for speedball, and it also boasts a private party room for friendly revelry. Alternatively, the indoor Minneapolis location invites paint slingers to spar on an urban combat field that dots green turf with stony structures. All locations offer free CO2 and compressed air fills.
Noted by KARE 11 as one of the more fruitful resale shopping experiences in the Midwest, Junk Bonanza offers savvy, thrifty shoppers antique treasures and a vast storehouse of vintage goods. Not limited to the cute clothes and poorly repackaged board games of standard thrift stores, junking conventions like Junk Bonanza deftly combine art, shopping, and a place for found-beauty enthusiasts to meet and swap tips on transforming one man’s junk into another man’s new best inanimate friend. More than 100 vendors bring items to Junk Bonanza’s three-day marketplace, offering everything from clothes to furniture to furniture made out of out-of-style clothes such as full-body beanies and camouflage tuxes.
The sommeliers at WineStyles stock cupboards with up to 150 vintages, each less than $25 a bottle, arranged according to boldness, richness, and difficulty of removing the cork. Patrons savor the crisp fragrances of a Randall-Monroe sauvignon blanc ($12.99) or draw in the golden apple and citrus hints of a Graton Cellars chardonnay ($12.99). A staff of experts is on hand to guide the palate to the Foxtail cabernet sauvignon ($12.99), which beckons the olfactory senses with aromas of berry and plum, and Los Primos malbec ($12.99), which drapes tongues in silken sheets of plum and vanilla. Wednesday evenings from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., customers can make their way to WineStyles for a complimentary sampling of four to six featured wines.