Wayne County is probably best known for its location on the edge of Amish Country, and for good reason. It’s common to see a horse and buggy along the back roads near the communities of Kidron, Dalton and Orrville. Those same small towns also offer unique shopping experiences, often as a result of the Mennonite or Amish communities. The founders of Smuckers, P. Graham Dunn and Lehman’s Hardware Store all come from a Mennonite background.
Shopping in Wayne County Ohio
J.M. Smucker Company Store & Cafe
The J.M. Smucker Company Store & Cafe, the flagship store of the popular 115-year old company, boasts an impressive shopping facility that showcases Smucker’s signature items and those in the Smucker’s family line of products. One of my favorite attractions in the area, you’ll find the Pillsbury Doughboy ready to join you in a selfie, an interactive museum that shares the Smucker’s story and a tasting station. That’s right, you can taste everything in the store before you buy. How handy is that?
P. Graham Dunn
A few minutes down the road, visible from Route 30, you’ll find P. Graham Dunn, an 18,000 square foot retail store full of inspirational art, gifts, home décor, Ohio State merchandise and clothing. The beautiful second floor showroom provides windows so guests can view the round-the-clock production that takes place in the factory on the ground floor. The company, which is celebrating their 40th year in business, caters to the Christian community as many of their pieces are inscribed with popular bible verses. They also have laser engravers that can engrave a large selection of products and provide customization while you wait. If you’re looking for a unique gift idea, this store has it.
Dalton Dari-ette Drive-in
When you leave P. Graham Dunn, stop at the Dalton Dari-ette Drive-in on the corner of U.S. Route 30 and Ohio Route 94 for an ice cream treat- just make sure you have a bit of cash on hand. If you don’t, you’ll find an ATM at the bank across the street.
Lehman’s Hardware Store
A gem of Wayne County is Lehman’s Hardware Store in nearby Kidron. Lehman’s started in 1955 by Jay Lehman to serve the Amish community. The store continues to be owned and operated by the Lehman family today and has grown from its humble beginnings to a store that is nearly ¾ of a mile long. You’ll find environmentally friendly products, hard to find goods and a large selection of items that are made in the U.S.A. From kitchen products, to retro candy, to canned bacon and composting toilets, don’t let the name ‘hardware store’ fool you- this stop will appeal to men and women, young and old. And for those silver haired visitors, you’ll experience a bit of nostalgia when viewing the antiques that are interspersed with the new items throughout the store.
Make sure you stop for a free sample of fudge, the Maple Nut is heavenly, check out the glass-bottled soda selection which includes 220 varieties with unique flavors such as bacon and sassafras, and get your photo taken inside the phone booth.
Quince Bakery & Café
If you’re a serious shopper, you’ll probably work up an appetite so grab a bite to eat in the café or pop next door and just across the street to Quince Bakery & Café for healthy lunch options and decadent desserts that are made from scratch using locally sourced ingredients whenever possible. Once you’ve tasted the to die for apple fritters with caramel sauce, you’ll find yourself making excuses to visit Kidron as frequently as possible.
Next time you plan a trip to Ohio’s Amish Country, swing by Wayne County, check out these unique shops and then stop in Wooster for more one of a kind shopping and dining experiences. You can learn more about Wayne County at http://wccvb.com/.
Have you gone shopping in Wayne County? Which store would you enjoy most?
A special thanks to Green Door Media for inviting me to experience Wayne County.
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© 2016, Tonya Prater. All rights reserved.