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What Happens When A Small-Town Family Visits The "World's Largest"... Whatever!

Country Junction: World’s Largest General Store, Lehighton, PA

We’re back! Thanks for holding.

Where we went, and who was coerced into going:

Country Junction

Country Junction

You know I’m an easy grader when I rate the places we visit. Too many years spent working in PR, looking for the best in places for a proper spin. I tried my hardest at Country Junction, the world’s largest general store, but I may have met my match. It’s a chain, but we went to the largest flagship location. I couldn’t get out of this place fast enough.

WHY did you go there, exactly?

I love the retail, you know that. Matt was even patient enough to visit the world’s largest candle store, and the world’s largest shoe store. These places lulled him into a false sense of security. Having been scarred at Country Junction, I’ve lost his trust.

Okay, what was so cool about it?

Welllll…not much.

A “general store” makes me think of an old-timey emporium out in Walnut Grove where the Ingalls family would buy coffee, jerky, nails, and penny candy. This place began as a hardware store, then added lawn and garden products, then gift and home décor items. There’s furniture, seasonal décor, grocery, a candy counter, and a bakery.

Oh, and a fine selection of guns and ammo. And a display of taxidermied animals. The turkey would look nice over our fireplace.

Country Junction

The green lights add a lot to the display, I think.

The layout follows a yellow brick road (painted squares on the cement floor), and there are a few animatronics here and there to keep the kids from whining. And random dinosaur and Spartacus statues.

Spartacus

Hail! (Matt forgot to bring his gold chest plates on this trip.)

We didn’t purchase much, but we did try the fresh-baked apple dumplings in the bakery department, and they were quite good.

Here’s a few things we found among the merch:

Six pack of birch beer, $4.99

2013 sunglasses to wear on New Year’s Eve, $2.99

Jar of Gooseberry Jam, $3.00

Jar of pickled eggs (your choice of mustard, buffalo, or jalapeño flavors): $5.99

Taxidermied lion (layer of dust at no extra cost), $24,999

Our coolest find was the coin-operated Zoltar machine, which reminded me of the movie “Big,” and therefore seemed GBOGH-appropriate. $7,999

 

Zoltar

Zoltar Speaks!

Outside is a petting zoo and a playground with dirty equipment. There’s also the Barn Door restaurant with a large movie screen, an ice cream parlor, and a wine shop. Just. So. Random.

Petting Zoo

“Don’t even THINK about touching that animal.”

How it rated on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 = snoozefest, 10 = add to your bucket list):

“Eclectic” is the kindest word I can use for this strange, dated, poor-quality collection of stuff you probably don’t need. I see a lot of hoarders starting down a dark road here.

 Country Junction

6565 Interchange Road, Lehighton, PA, 610-377-5050

 

9 comments

  1. Karon said,
    January 10, 2013 @ 10:36 am

    I’m with you when it comes to general stores. I want to see nails and screws sorted in jelly jars, RC colas in a bottle next to a Moon Pie, and wooden barrels overflowing with (what used to be) penny candy. So I’ll probably skip this place. That being said, I LOVED the photo of Matt with the gladiator!

  2. January 10, 2013 @ 10:37 am

    I have been near this a few times; but I have always been in a time crunch to get somewhere else and I haven’t stopped yet.

    That picture of Matt is PRICELESS. You need a giant gallery print of that that fills your entire livingroom wall!

    Since there is so much tacky goodness here … I have the feeling that my “star rating” would bump up a little higher than yours 🙂 Plus, any place that has a Zoltar gets an automatic 5 star bonus.

  3. Pat said,
    January 10, 2013 @ 10:56 am

    Interesting that they’d have a spartan in a store that sells needless junk. Did you ask them for a refund of your gas expense?

    By the way, I got my Michelin guide and it looks great. Thanks again.

  4. Jessica said,
    January 10, 2013 @ 11:15 am

    Well it may have been a bust for a visit, but it certainly made for an entertaining review! I would have loved the Zoltar machine!

  5. Mike said,
    January 10, 2013 @ 11:44 am

    That was hilarious. I think that I laughed hardest at the Spartacus statement. Nice to know that this is one stop I don’t have to make….

  6. Kevin said,
    January 10, 2013 @ 2:55 pm

    Sigh. I’m torn… there are some “random junk” stores (see: ToyJoy in Austin) that I really have a soft spot for, but on the other hand there are others that I can’t wait for Amazon to put in the ground once and for all.
    Either way, I feel terrible for those poor animals.

  7. Dominique said,
    January 13, 2013 @ 7:57 pm

    Yup, that picture of Mr. Matt is definitely the treasure from this trip!
    This looks a little like a discount Wall Drug, although I’m glad to see you still found some treasures 🙂

  8. Brandon said,
    January 16, 2013 @ 1:23 pm

    Ha, that’s a funny picture of him with the Roman guard. Looks like a fun place to travel. I actually work for a RV dealership, and this would be a interesting place to travel to. One day maybe I’ll take a diesel motorhome and travel the world! 🙂 lol

  9. Jami said,
    January 22, 2013 @ 9:36 pm

    Looks like an exciting place to travel with kids. That general store looks interesting too, there must be something cool to buy, right? My little brother loves petting zoo, and I hope he will be happy when we go there feeding some animals. Thanks for the inspiring post.