But in the village of Honor, theres a place called Cabin Fever, and it might offer some relief. Full of one-of-akind toys and games, a full cappuccino and espresso bar and featuring their own homemade fudge, it just might make you forget its the middle of winter.
Rachel Black relocated her unique store from California to Benzie County three years ago. She started the concept shop nine years ago with cool games for cold nights. These are not games you will find at Wal-Mart or Target, theres no Hasbro toys here, Rachel said. I like to think we offer different things from mindless to mensa.
From the board game How to Host A Murder to Toxic Teddies to Elvis, Simpsons or Mickey Mouse Monopoly to Lord of the Rings Backgammon, theres a variety of party games, playing cards, brain teasers and puzzles. They carry the popular line of Cheap Ass Games, with most under $10, including Give Me The Brain, Devil Bunny Needs a Ham, and Unexploded Cow, to name a few. She also carries a selection of bumper stickers, buttons and posters that she refers to as politically progressive ephemera.
When she moved east, she kept her Internet accounts and found a spot in downtown Beulah. Two years later she moved on US 31 in the village of Honor and business has grown steadily since. When she began offering her some 25 flavors of homemade fudge, she won over the locals and tourists alike. All made in house, in small batches, the flavors include cappuccino, with four shots of espresso in each batch; Michigan cherry with amaretto, and dried local cherries; heath bar crunch; maple walnut, using real local maple syrup; and her popular summer favorite, shagadelic sherbert, a three-layer fruity mix.
I didnt realize before I moved here that fudge was the state food and that euchre was the local pastime, Black chuckled. Her summer business has grown since she moved on the main highway, and visitors now seek her unique shop out as a destination stop. My local customers moved with me, and many more have stopped since we opened here. Mornings are busy now and summer is crazy. I work 14 hour days. I dont make what I would in the city, but I get to live here and raise my daughter, so its worth it.
A professional musician for 15 years (she plays piano), Black would like to expand into more locations and be able to have managers at the stores so she could play music on the side. I havent had time to play since Im always here. Ive learned that the notion of doing everything yourself is overrated.
Does she see more Cabin Fever stores popping up? Oh yes, Id like to open at least two more in the next few years and am looking at a spot near Petoskey. Winter hours are M-F, 7:30 am-2:30 pm; Sat., 9:30 am - 4 pm. They are open seven days a week in the summer. Located at 10715 Main St., Honor, 231-325-4041 or check them out at www.damnedgames.com.