The Garage on 25: It’s a Celebration
By Susan Brady
The Garage on 25 is an eclectic store in the mountains of North Carolina, that offers handmade, repurposed and vintage items.
In November of 2019, its three partners, Susan Brady, Ellen Schwab and Kaye Youngblood will be celebrating its third birthday. “But that’s not the only thing we celebrate” said Garage manager, Joan Rickert. “Our philosophy is life is worth celebrating and so every time we get the chance, we do so”.
In addition to their 3rd birthday, November is a month to honor the beautiful fall season and Thanksgiving. If you had forgotten it was fall because of the hot temperatures this year, you will quickly be reminded when you walk in The Garage on 25.
You can find pumpkins all over the 12,000 square feet of merchandise, in all different shapes, sizes, materials and colors. And later that month they will hold their annual pumpkin contest between their own Garage vendors. Last year vendors created pumpkins made of jewelry, handsewn materials, paper and metal. Customers were asked to vote on their favorite pumpkin and both children and adults were awed by their creative designs.
In October, The Garage celebrated Retro Week, which co-owner, Ellen Schwab described as “a time to connect with the sentimental and fun times of the past”. The week included roving models wearing vintage clothing, an antique car show, a retro board game contest, glamour shots, an 80’s music trivia contest and old fashioned soda floats.
However, even if you couldn’t make it to retro week, you can always find lots of cool retro items at The Garage on 25. During the summer months, it hosts The Second Saturday Markets where people set up tents outside in addition to the merchandise inside the store.
Visitors can enjoy shopping in the cool breezes under the large oak trees or come in and enjoy a glass of ice tea while walking through the beautifully designed booths.
In honor of our veterans, the Garage built large outdoor playhouses in December and auctioned them off before Christmas to raise money for The Veterans Healing Farm. The Veterans Healing Farm is a local nonprofit group that provides help to local veterans by helping them to learn the techniques and benefits of healthy and sustainable food choices.
They grow the best quality food possible and then give to veterans as a thanks for their service. Boot camps are offered to veterans to learn about growing vegetables, bee keeping and a variety of other subjects. Co-owner of the Garage, Susan Brady, said what “an honor it was to work with this group. Their heart is in the right place as they work to welcome veterans after serving our country”.
At the conclusion of the auction, a celebration was held at The Garage and a check was awarded to John Mahshie, executive director of The Veterans Healing Farm, on behalf of the farm. The Garage also continued its annual Candlelight Stroll before Christmas.
Live music, candles and refreshments are part of the nighttime shopping experience. Shoppers delighted in strolling around the store and running into local friends who also wanted to avoid the hustle and bustle and enjoy a quiet and relaxed night of shopping.
Whether it’s is a leprechaun scavenger hunt around the store on St. Patrick’s Day, a mystery date contest on Valentines, a concert in The Coffee Garage with Blue’s legend Mac Arnold, or a ladies night out complete with henna tattoos and fairy hair, you can always find something exciting going on at The Garage on 25.
Complete with over 80 vendors who make, design, build, collect, repurpose and recycle, every day in indeed a celebration.