GRIZZLY CANYON. The name doesn’t really fit Sleepy Eye, a small farming community on the southwestern Minnesota prairie. There are no grizzly bears, or canyons, here. But the business name seems to fit Montana Mielke, the young man who owns Grizzly Canyon Antiques and Collectibles on Sleepy Eye’s main drag.
With a head of thick curly hair, a full beard and a stout build, his appearance suggests a rugged outdoorsman. This is all conjecture on my part. I never asked about his interests or the stories behind his personal and business names.
Not that either matters. He’s a personable guy, son of Brent Mielke who owns Zooman’s Wacky World of Fun across the street next to Sleepy Eye Stained Glass. His dad does his thing, he does his, Montana noted as we chatted.
As antique shops go, Grizzly Canyon is neat, orderly and not at all stuffed. I appreciate that. I often feel overwhelmed with too many antiques and collectibles cramming most antique stores.
While browsing and photographing some of the merchandise, with Montana’s OK, I noticed one particularly unusual piece—a Cape Canaveral U.S. Air Force Missile Test Center toy replica.
But I also spotted what I would expect to find in Sleepy Eye—items featuring Chief Sleepy Eye, the Dakota leader after whom this town is named.
Names. There’s that word again. Somehow Grizzy Canyon fits this narrow store with the Beware of Rattlesnakes poster and the wide-mouthed striking rattlesnake flashing its fangs inside a glass case.
FYI: Grizzly Canyon is open from 10:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday-Friday and from 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Saturday.
© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
Love the name and the tour,Audrey.
Thank you, Ruth. I always love discovering places like Grizzly Canyon in small towns.
What a neat little store. I love the architecture of the buildings
It is a great little shop. And, yes, some beautiful old buildings in Sleepy Eye.
I heard about the closing of the corn packing plant in Sleepy Eye on the news. I hope the small town can survive this and the little antique shop can stay open. I love small town antique shops.
I hope so, too. Del Monte has been in Sleepy Eye for a long time. It affects farmers in the area also given they grow corn and peas for the canning company.
Nice shop! I think I would enjoy their company if they didn’t mind mine. Cape Canaveral! Sadly, it is now Cape Kennedy. Just can’t leave names alone!
Oh, I expect you could strike up an interesting conversation with Montana.
Sleepy Eye looks like a lovely small town. Thanks for your picturesque tour, Audrey! 🙂
You are welcome, Penny.
Another great store to explore. It looks amazing and I totally understand the appeal of a not too stuffed store.
Yup. Montana has done a great job with displaying his merchandise.