Who doesn’t like to shop? Well, honestly, I really don’t, but when I find an unusual store like these weird and wacky Nevada shops (or
amazing thrift stores), I tend to want to check it out. If you are looking for the unique, eclectic, nerdy, or just downright strange, these 10 weird and wacky Nevada shops are the places to go. Take a look!
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. The Black Room, 1000 E. Sahara Ave. , Suite 108, Las Vegas
This German fetish shop (yes, you read that correctly) has a wide assortment of toys, outfits, and other items; many of which are imported from Europe. Let's just leave the description at that.
2. Natural Selection, 39 St. Lawrence Ave., Reno
This Midtown Reno curiosity shop and taxidermy store (I know, right?!) is chock-full of quality natural specimens like air plants, animal skulls, taxidermy, and natural-item gifts like squirrel and raccoon tails (for various occasions, I suppose), bird feathers, insect prints, and much more.
3. Writer's Block Book Shop, 1020 Fremont Street, Las Vegas
This is definitely NOT your typical independent bookstore. In addition to a variety of interesting, rare, and unusual books, Writer's Block is also an artificial bird sanctuary and adoption agency. Oh yeah, other items include Venus flytraps, masks, croquet sets, children's items, a page-eating rabbit, and a machine that binds a paperback book in five minutes. The store also has a studio that holds various writing workshops and seminars.
4. Happy Happy Joy Joy, 955 S. Virginia St., Suite 102, Reno
This novelty store sells a wide variety of unique, eclectic, whimsical, and unusual items. The walls and ceiling are decorated by a huge wall of Vans shoes (dubbed Shoezilla), fluffy white clouds, and unicorns. A tactile shopping experience, HHJJ (as it is known to its customers) contains everything from Star Wars action figures to gag gifts to books to board games and beyond.
5. Art-o-Mat, 3708 Las Vegas Blvd. South, Las Vegas (inside the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas)
While not necessarily an actual store per se, Art-o-mats are refurbished old cigarette machines on the second and third floors of the Cosmopolitan Hotel. For $5, you can purchase a piece of art: a handcrafted leather wristband, a tiny painting on a piece of wood, a photograph, a drawing, and more. It's a surprise. All of the art "sold" in these machines are by local artists.
6. Rocking and Rolling, 402 N. Curry St., Carson City
Located on the Carson City Wine Walk, this quirky little shop is described as a rock shop for rock hounds by rock hounds. In addition to the large variety of rocks and crystals, the store also sells books, local art and jewelry, and more. Owner/proprietor Jeanette Champagne is probably one of the sweetest people you will ever meet!
7. Rainbow Feather Dyeing Company, 1036 S. Main St., Las Vegas
Started in 1964 in Burbank, California, Rainbow Feather Company moved to Las Vegas in 1993. Whether you are looking for costume feathers, lei materials, boas, or to have feathers dyed, this is the place to go! In fact, Rainbow Feather Company provides Cirque du Soleil with all of their feathers. Seriously, this place is dripping with feathers.
8. Retro Vegas, 1131 S. Main St., Las Vegas
If you are in the market for Vegas-themed vintage clothing, furniture, and other "things," Retro Vegas is the place to shop. From old-fashioned rotary phones to acrylic flamingos to more polyester than is in your grandmother's closet, no two visits to this wacky and eclectic store are the same as the inventory is always changing.
9. The Loneliest Thrift Store in America, 421 Aultman St., Ely
This discount, consignment, thrift, and furniture store is run by Cynthia Davis who opened her shop when she ran out of storage space. Perhaps the most interesting merchandise is located in the shop's retro area where you can find working items from 1940s and 1950s such as irons or a fat-burning machine. There are also memorabilia from Ely shops no longer in business. Add to these items antique furniture and you have a truly eclectic shopping experience.
10. Alternate Reality Comics, 4110 S. Maryland Parkway, Suite 8, Las Vegas
If you are looking for a comic book, graphic novel, or collectibles, owner Ralph Mathieu is the one to ask as he has operated Alternate Reality Comics in Las Vegas for over 17 years. From superheroes to manga to shojo and beyond, comic aficionados flock to this quaint shop.
Have you visited any of these weird and wacky Nevada shops? Did I leave your favorite off this list? Please comment below.