When you drive through Elk Rapids you will notice one of the buildings does not look like the rest. It’s a little cabin made of stone that is the home of a toy store.
For Hometown Tourist, Whitney Amann and Erin Malone take a trip to to learn about the nostalgia this special cabin holds.
The stone structure that houses Stoney Cabin Toys has been around since at least 1935. Once upon a time housing a barber shop, a place to grab a hamburger and for the last 25 years a toy store, but owner Becky Lancaster didn’t start out in the toy business.
“I’ve owned this store three years,” said Becky. “I wanted the building because I thought it was adorable and I wanted to preserve it. So with the building at the time came the toy store, so I decided, alright I’ll try it for a few years, and now I’m a toy entrepreneur.”
Now she has grown into loving her new career and the memories that are created here for generations. And her running theme? Not battery powered, kid and imagination powered.
“I’ve always been involved in education, even in my past jobs. People walk in and say ‘I want something that will keep people off of their screens,’ so that’s in the back of my mind every time I shop and select toys is to get their heads up, to get off of technology because they need that balance in play,” explained Becky.
The fun part is that adults have a blast visiting too, but you can see the kids are wide-eyed and creating memories.
When you ask Becky what her favorite part is, it’s pretty simple.
“Children, of all ages. I have children that come in, you know, from newborns to 99 years of age and it’s actually quite fun. There are adults who enjoy playing and you can tell as soon as they walk in the door they almost turn into a kid, and that’s fun,” explained Becky.
So if you’re looking for a fun visit with whimsy, you might want to visit Stoney Cabin Toys. It’s a place with nostalgia from the fairy tale-like building to the toys so carefully selected inside.