Shopping Local in the Appleton Area this Season - Venture Wisconsin

Shopping Local in the Appleton Area this Season

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It feels like we’ve heard it this year more than ever – shop local. At Venture Wisconsin, we couldn’t agree with this more. Shopping local is the perfect way to put money back into our communities and help our beloved businesses keep their doors open. That being said, we know that sometimes it isn’t necessarily easy to know where to go for certain things and we know that a lot of people don’t know of all the gems we have in our community! We’ve put together a list of some great local businesses in the Fox Valley to grab a quick local gift for. We know there are soo many more. What are your go to local places to shop?

Downtown Appleton

ACOCA Coffee

Coffee delivered? Yes, please. ACOCA Coffee in Appleton roasts their own beans and delivers it locally. That in itself is enough to get us excited, but to top it all off they are almost done on their downtown remodel! An ACOCA gift card or a bag of coffee is the perfect stocking stuffer for a true coffee fanatic. Take a look at your list – do you have a teacher on there? Teachers will never turn down good coffee and holy cow do they deserve it! And honestly… you played teacher this year, too. Treat yourself! Stop in at their location down in the flats inside Tandem Wine & Beer for all of your ACOCA coffee needs as they continue to remodel their Downtown location. Two ACOCA’s in Appleton is going to be fan.tas.tic! 

Credit: ACOCA Coffee

Tandem Wine & Beer

Coffee in the morning, an adult treat in the evening – Tandem Wine & Beer has you covered! Tandem is such a unique place with so much to offer. You will never go there and not find something that either you were already looking for, or even better, something you didn’t know you were looking for! They have a huge selection of wine and beer that you really can’t go wrong shopping here. 

Lillians of Appleton

Lillian’s Downtown Appleton, it truly has something for everyone. Especially now as they recently started carrying men’s clothing! This is huge as going to Lillian’s for your holiday shopping can really ensure that you get a lot of people crossed off of your list! They carry some of the cutest styles that you truly will not find anywhere else. Lillian’s carries true quality clothing – these are pieces that will last you for a very long time and will likely end up being some of your favorites! You’ll want to follow Lillian’s on Facebook, too.

Credit: Lillians of Appleton

The owner, Kara, often hosts Facebook live events where you can shop virtually, most every Tuesday they post a video of their “fashion updates” to show you all the new goodies for the week, and you can often find some insanely good deals posted on their page! Lillian’s does also offer private in store shopping for individuals or small groups, as well as online shopping here.

Eco Candle Company

Walk into this little shop and you will never want to leave. At Eco Candle they hand pour every single candle that exists in there. Does it really get any better than that? They are environmentally conscious and pride themselves with their high quality products. Their website is an online shopping dream – their scent descriptions don’t leave you wondering what everything is, they are well described and you’ll want to add them all to your cart! 

Mud & Prints

The housing industry during a pandemic was crazy good. Seems weird, but that’s a topic for another day. This being said, we can assume there is at least one person or family on your list that bought a new home this year. So exciting! Mud & Prints downtown Appleton is bound to have a unique piece that the new home owner on your list will be ecstatic to display. Don’t miss out on their unique mugs, as well. At Mud & Prints they always have creative mugs that you won’t find anywhere else. Have an essential person on your list? We found the perfect gift. 

Credit: Mud & Prints


Considering all the time we spent at home this year, I know I’m not just speaking for myself when I say that we’ve played all of our board games a few times. We’re all ready for a game haul. This is where Boardlandia comes in – a board game store. You’ll literally never get bored here. (Cue nerdy laughter…) If you’re still reading after that, thank you. Do yourself a favor and check this place out as you are bound to find your new favorite board game. This is your chance to find an activity to unite you with your loved ones, or open up a can of relentless competition. Let us know what you find! 

Float Light

If you haven’t heard, Float Light is a sensory deprivation spa that provides the ultimate relaxation experience. I can tell you first hand that the experience is very unique and very relaxing. Giving the gift of a float and relaxation is a gift we can all use this year!

Blue Moon Emporium

If you love Wisconsin themed gifts, Blue Moon is the best around! Awesome candles, cards, clothes, cribbage boards and other unique gifts! Blue Moon is right on College Ave and you won’t leave without some unique Wisconsin finds.


Red Door Mercantile 

An experience boutique. That’s how Red Door Mercantile describes themselves and really, do they need to say more? It’s such an intriguing way of describing themselves! Red Door Mercantile could honestly be a one stop shop for many people on your gift list, they have so many things! One thing that we find super unique about Red Door is their “Red’s Barbershop” area. It is a nook of the store where you can find alllll the goodies for the men in your life. Unique men finds aren’t often all that easy to get your hands on especially in small local shops, so this is super nice to have right in our community! I’ll leave you with one last thing…. Candles. 

West Appleton & Fox River Mall

The Salt Room Appleton

Unique is the way to go this year. Have you heard of a salt room?  It is seriously exactly as it sounds – but therapeutic. It might actually be the most relaxing way to take care of your sinuses, which is so important this time of year. Here’s what they have to say about salt therapy on their Facebook:

“During a salt therapy session, the micro particles of salt reach into the lungs and sinuses and destroy bacteria and pathogen agents. The salt reduces swelling and inflammation and clears away mucus, which relieves stuffiness. Regular sessions help to support the immune system and promote clearer breathing. Salt therapy is completely natural and drug-free!”

Credit: Salt Room Appleton

They have gift cards available, so don’t be afraid to treat yourself this year as well!


Appleton Crate Company

Have you checked out Antique Up in Kimberly? At Antique Up you’ll find many great local craft vendors including Appleton Crate Company, an incredibly unique little vendor where you’ll find alllll the best home decor goodies. Many of their items are repurposed and handcrafted, does it get any better than that? These kinds of gifts are often the most meaningful to give and so fun to receive. Plus, no one ever has too many decor pieces!

Poppy Avenue Boutique & Poppy Avenue Clean Beauty Bar

Are you or someone on your list looking to switch your beauty routine to items with clean ingredients? Look no further than the beautiful River Heath area in Appleton. The River Heath has got some amazing businesses in it, among them is Poppy Avenue Boutique and their Clean Beauty Bar. At both stores you are bound to find something you love – whether it’s a statement piece for your holiday virtual happy hour or you are trying to love your body through more natural products, the girls at Poppy Avenue will be happy to guide you in the right direction!

Obviously there are so many local businesses to support. We just wanted to highlight a few different varieties of local businesses in the Appleton area that are very active in the community.

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