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Historic Valley Junction

137 Fifth St.
West Des Moines  Iowa  50265
United States
(515) 222-3642
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Midwest Living Review

Kathy Bowermaster
This historical retail district welcomes shoppers with stores that range from funky to fancy.

When the goal is shopping and the destination is Valley Junction, it’s easy to wonder where the time goes. A row of antiques shops was once the major draw, but now, this award-winning historical district beckons visitors with funky vintage venues, clothing and accessories boutiques, a kitchen specialty store and the Iowa Market, where out-of-towners can snag the perfect Iowa souvenirs to take home.

Creative types will gravitate toward shops catering to quilters and beaders, and a handful of reputable art galleries invite browsing. After you’ve worked up an appetite, options for lunch include bar food, Mexican fare, a neighborhood pizza-pasta joint, soup, sandwiches and a coffee shop. For dessert anytime, Carefree Patisserie bakes fresh cupcakes in nearly a dozen rotating weekly flavors.

Stores stay open late for gallery nights several times a year, and the streets bustle during the Thursday farmers market and frequent art fairs during warm months. The one-way main street offers free storefront parking (overflow space is available behind the stores). Most of the businesses keep regular retail hours, with some closed on Sundays.

Visited: 
March 9, 2013

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