Letters

Letters 08-29-2016

Religious Bigotry President Obama has been roundly criticized for his apparent unwillingness to use the term “radical Islamic terrorism.” His critics seem to suggest that through the mere use of that terminology, the defeat of ISIS would be assured...

TC DDA: Focus On Your Mission What on earth is the Traverse City DDA thinking? Purchasing land around (not within) its TIF boundaries and then offering it at a discount to developers? That is not its mission. Sadly enough, it is already falling down on the job regarding what is its mission. Crosswalks are deteriorating all around downtown, trees aren’t trimmed, sidewalks are uneven. Why can’t the DDA do a better job of maintaining what it already has? And still no public restrooms downtown, despite all the tax dollars captured since 1997. What a joke...

European-Americans Are Boring “20 Fascinating People” in northern Michigan -- and every single one is European-American? Sorry, but this is journalistically incorrect. It’s easy for editors to assign and reporters to write stories about people who are already within their personal and professional networks. It’s harder to dig up stuff about people you don’t know and have never met. Harder is better...

Be Aware Of Lawsuit While most non-Indians were sleep walking, local Odawa leaders filed a lawsuit seeking to potentially have most of Emmet County and part of Charlevoix County declared within their reservation and thus under their jurisdiction. This assertion of jurisdiction is embedded in their recently constructed constitution as documentation of their intent...

More Parking Headaches I have another comment to make about downtown TC parking following Pat Sullivan’s recent article. My hubby and I parked in a handicap spot (with a meter) behind Mackinaw Brew Pub for lunch. The handicap spot happens to be 8-10 spaces away from the payment center. Now isn’t that interesting...

Demand Change At Women’s Resource Center Change is needed for the Women’s Resource Center for the Grand Traverse Area (WRCGT). As Patrick Sullivan pointed out in his article, former employees and supporters don’t like the direction WRCGT has taken. As former employees, we are downright terrified at the direction Juliette Schultz and Ralph Soffredine have led the organization...

Home · Articles · News · Features · Tampico offers a touch of...
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Tampico offers a touch of Mexico & the southwest

Erin Crowell - June 14th, 2010
Tampico offers a touch of Mexico & the Southwest
By Erin Crowell
Cris and Kathy Telgard have made a living out of travel shopping. It’s a job most people dream of and it has proven to be quite successful. The Telgards own Tampico, an eclectic boutique of jewelry, folk art and furniture, located on Main Street in downtown Leland.
The Telgards never intended to make a business out of their regular travels to Mexico. But soon after the couple started bringing back treasures, friends were sending them on their way with shopping lists.
“On one trip to Oaxaca, it was a revelation,” says Cris. “We had all our goodies spread out at our hotel room and we thought, ‘Wow, we could really make a living out of this.’”
So, the couple purchased a small building in Fishtown to sell their purchases.
“We started out in a building the size of most people’s bedrooms,” Kathy laughs.
At first, the Telgards sold only Mexican goods such as weavings, pottery and jewelry. After eight years, they decided it was time to expand.
“There were many people waiting to buy the building that we are in now,” Kathy says. “The people selling it gave us 24 hours to decide.”
“It only took us a half hour to say yes,” Cris says.

SOUTHERN CONNECTIONS
Some 24 years, a new store location and an added warehouse later, the Telgards have put Tampico on the tourist destination map, expanding their retail with goods from all over the world.
“Our primary source is Navajo,” Cris says. “We use a silversmith in New Mexico.”
The Telgards also use New Mexico as a home base during the winter months.
“We spend a month filling up a semi truck with all our purchases and then drive it back to Michigan,” he says.
Regular trips to these small towns have allowed the Telgards to develop a relationship with the local artisans and their families.
“We’re buying from artists who were just ankle biters when we met them and their parents,” Kathy says.

THE GOODS
It’s hard to pin the specialty good that is sold at Tampico – the store is known to sell all sorts of items, including jewelry from Michigan and around the world, colorful folk art from Oaxaca and the Navajo, rustic furniture, rugs, copper and hand-painted sink basins, metal-framed mirrors, hats and—most recently—a larger selection of authentic, vintage cowboy boots.
“We have over 300 cowboy boots—cleaned, waxed and refurbished—from New Mexico,” says Cris.
The Telgards scoured estate sales and flea markets, finding a variety of boots – some dating back to the 1950s.
“The first year we brought back around 100 boots – and sold all of those. Last year we had 180 – and sold all of those, too,” says Cris.
The Telgards say this year’s stock is already going fast. It’s proven to be one of their hottest items.
Of course, there’s always something fun and unique to find at Tampico.
“If you want to be a successful business you have to keep the entertainment high,” says Cris. “And that’s what we’ve done. People are always asking us, ‘what did you come back with this time?’”

Tampico is located at 112 N. Main Street in downtown Leland. Current hours are weekdays, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; weekends, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. July 4-Labor Day, store hours are 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Call them at 231-256-7747.






 
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