Hometown Tourist: Brownwood Acres in Central Lake

This week’s Hometown Tourist takes us a to a fifth generation family run business that all began in 1945 as a roadside honey stand, and grew into Brownwood Acres in Central Lake.

Charlie Tinker and Erin Malone take us there for Hometown Tourist.

“Brownwood Acres was started in 1945 as a roadside honey stand it was founded by my great grandmother,” Jordan Detar, owner of Brownwood Acres said.

Jordan Detar is taking the reins of the family business, one that has lasted generations and served generations of memories for its customers at Brownwood Acres.

“Mary Louise would harvest the honey from her grandmother and sell it at the stand and soon a lot of local farmers and other people started asking if they could sell their products at the stand,” Jordan said.

Well that brought in more and more people, but the real business boom happened in 1957 with a little Torch Lake snafu.

“To feed the growing demands we started adding local attractions starting with the Grass Lakes School House and then we bought the East Port Inn, which was originally a stagecoach

“And so we bought that building and brought it across Torch Lake and it fell through the ice, which according to family history that landed us a spot on the cover of Life Magazine,” Jordan said.

They managed to pull the building out, which is now the general store that sells their homemade sauces and goods, candy and so much more.

When you visit you’ll hear murmurings of memories from generations bac

k, and watch kids picking out candy and witness nostalgia in the making.

“One of our corner stones is that we have not only return customers, but return friends. We know almost everyone by name after a few years and it’s fun to see how people change but the location has stayed the same,” she said.

Oh, and let’s not forget about the fresh donuts.

“Across the little driveway we have our jam kitchen which is where we actually make all of our donuts and jar our growing line of jarred goods,” Jordan said.

There’s not much they don’t have here, it is a general store after all, but a tea room and also on the weekends serves as a market.

But the thing you’ll get the most from the moment you come here is a true family spirit.

“When people come and visit I love for them to feel like they’re stepping back in time, we try to stick to our traditions here at Brownwood,” Jordan said.

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Categories: Hometown Tourist

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