Thursday, March 22, 2012

Famous Stuff

Living in Iowa, we aren’t exactly surrounded by famous people.  When someone/something becomes famous, we hop all over that business. Since Flavor Flav’s restaurant closed, we are left with only a few chances for a celebrity sighting.  (Please note: I never made it to Flavor Flav’s restaurant.  It is on my list of life regrets.)

When my parents were in town a couple of week-ends ago, we headed to the area’s closest thing to a “famous place”.

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What is this little garage you may ask?  It’s the home store of History Channel’s American Pickers. It’s located in Le Claire, Iowa…about 15 minutes from our house.

I’m not a giant fan of the show. It’s okay. I watch it on occasion. I like seeing the items that they find hidden away in barns and storage sheds.  I feel a little sad, however, when they rip old people off.  I get it.  It’s a business.  But I like old people.

The “pickers” weren’t here on this day but we did stop in to check out the shop.  What’s it like?It’s small.  There generally aren’t many items that I can’t live without.  Except for some of their oversized letters.

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Most of the items are expensive….or maybe just out of my Salvation Army price range.  And a little creepy for my taste…

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Overall it’s a fun place to take visitors.  Would I make a special trip to Le Claire just for the shop?  No.  But the rest of Le Claire is charming.  The main street is full of shopping, antiques, and yummy restaurants.

The location does allow for a cheesy photo with your husband next to a ratty old car with the mighty Mississippi in the background.  Who could pass that up?

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Not this girl.

Any American Pickers fans out there?  Where’s your nearest famous place/chance for a celebrity sighting?  Met anyone famous lately?


  1. I'm disappointed that you never went to Flavor Flav's restaurant. Hmmm, I wonder why it closed... That's cool that you're within driving distance of the Picker shop. I agree with you-- I hate it when they rip off old people.

    I live in Indiana, there's not many famous people here. I did see Jimmy Fallon in February, but that was a fluke because he was here for the Super Bowl.

  2. i want to school with Kyle Vanden Bosch (nfl football player). ang

  3. I'm not a fan of the show but I would love one of those old cash registers in my house! Or a few of those vintage suitcases on the top shelf. I need to go antiquing asap!
    I have recently met a pretty famous NHL hockey player - at least he's famous in our neck of the woods - I'm Canadian. Hockey players are like royalty around here.

  4. I only watched American Pickers once, and I agree... it's sad when they rip off the older people. I don't think I could go around hunting for "treasures" like that.

    In terms of celebrities, I once passed Meg Ryan on the street! Also, my uncle rented his house out to Rachel Hunter the Summer I was staying with him (we had to rent a hotel until we went back to Seattle). That's pretty much it!

  5. Am I the only one who LOVES American Pickers? I think they are hilarious. And now every time I drive by weird places I want to stop and go picking.

    I have never been around anyone famous...unless you count talking with Al Roker on TV at the Today Show out on the plaza!

  6. I have seen American Pickers, but it's not my favorite show either. I once met David Morse on the set of Hack when he was filming in Philly. My friends promptly told him how much taller he is than Denzel Washington. I remember David looked at him like that was the last thing he expected to hear. Oh, and my Dad once bumped into Bobcat Goldthwait at the Scranton Airport!

    I may have asked you this already.. have you ever been to the Maid-Rite in Cedar Falls? Best hashbrowns I've ever had. ever.

  7. Interesting... I have watched the show and wondered about their actual shop. Thanks for sharing.

  8. I have never watched the show. We have a few places like this in our area. One is called Cowgirl's Attic. The lady goes in and strips out barns and houses that are being torn down because old people die. She has stuff piled to the ceiling and it is hard to see what she is selling. Strange to think of how it meant something to someone and now it is just part of the pile:(


  9. I don't really like American Pickers because I think the guys are annoying. I do enjoy the stuff they find, but it seems like it would be way expensive to buy from them.

    I met Twofer from 30 Rock at a party once. He was a pretty cool guy.

    Also, I live in West Chester, PA, which is where Bam Margera and his crew are from/live. He has a skate shop and a bar in town. I've seen him out once and I saw Rake Yohn twice (and he looks just as gross in person). I've been to a lot of the places on Viva La Bam, I frequently drive past the bar where they gave out Johnny Knoxville's phone number, shop where they used to race around in shopping carts, and live just down the road from where Ryan Dunn got into his accident.

  10. The closest famous person to me is Michelle from Decor and the Dog. Sometimes, I see her and it's a total celebrity spotting.

  11. I actually like the show. They are just so nerdy and get so darn excited about the weirdest things! It's not very often I think "hey, I'd buy that", but I do like to see what all they can find.

    I hear tell that the youngest kid from Home Improvement lives in Lawrence, which is about 30 minutes from us.. but I've never spotted him. Kansas also has the biggest groundhog. So yeah, we're kind of a big deal.

  12. You didn't go to Flavor Flav's?! Even I went there! I was STAAAAARVING when we went so I thought it was the absolute best chicken I had ever tasted in my entire existence, but Jeff and his sister who was visiting at the time both didn't like it much.So who knows how it really tasted . . . but I still remember it fondly.

    Also, I love Kim's comment up there . . . heeheehee!

  13. I love the show, but I still have never made it to the shop when it was open. Once, I did drive out there and find it using only my general idea of where it was from watching the show. I think it's neat that it's so close.

  14. There's a Canadian Pickers show that I've watched a few times. It's not my favourite, and I find that a lot of people should be classified as hoarders as opposed to collectors.....

    Anyway, just curious how much that store charges for the huge letters?

    1. I think they were around $ they weren't too bad. If they had the letter of our last name I may have purchased one!

  15. I also have a hard time finding anything I couldn't live without at antique stores. The stuff just doesn't usually appeal to me, AND you're right--the prices can be too high for my taste. And teacher my mom used to work for is aunt of Mark Valley, who had stints on Boston Legal, Human Target, and now Harry's Law. Does that count? :P

  16. I agree that the show's pickers always take advantage of cute old people who are overwhelmed by the camera. Fun to be able to do a day trip though:)

  17. How could you not make it to flava flaves restaurant!!! Lol wow. We watch American pickets sometimes. But I'd rather watch the show with the picker sisters, they wear really cute outfits while digging in people's sheds. Idk, I can relate better I guess.

    My biggest celeb encounter was washing my hands with the mom from family matters in an airport bathroom. Yes it's true.

  18. Oh how cool!! My hubby and I watch this show!!
    Well, our biggest celebrity lives about 45 minutes away from where I work..who would that be?? The one and only: John Travolta & Kelly and & fam...he even flys his on plane on his property. This would be in Ocala, Fl. Pretty cool, huh?!!!

  19. i don't have a lot of celebrities near where I live, but I meet a lot in my job :). Ray Bourque, Hilary Clinton, J-LO, Robert Irvine (food network), Adam Sandler, Milo Ventimiglia, the US Women's Olympic Champion Volleyball Team, Tyra Banks, Katie name a couple :).

  20. I love American Pickers. I'm a sucker for any of those types of shows as is my husband. Living in Atlanta there are plenty of celebrities around although I never really see them. I saw Ludacris before but that's about it. Cee Lo used to frequent the health food store that was right down the work from me but I haven't heard of him going there lately. The only famous person I have really ever met and had a picture taken with though is Ron Paul :)

  21. D loves the show. I'm so-so about it. But still pretty cool that you went to the shop. I hear a Kardashian moved to Big D...I could care less. Randy Travis lives about 30 min north of me. That's about it as far as I know, unless you count the joker down the street who thinks he's a rockstar. He even built a music room in his garage and likes to keep it open on the weekends for the neighborhood to see. Yea, classy.

  22. OMG! I can't say I'm a huge fan of the show or anything, but I'd LOVE to go and just look around that shop! I'd bet there would be some amazing, unique finds!!!

  23. i personally think that is way cooler than any celebrity sighting!

  24. I once stalked my favorite band backstage after a concert until I saw a glimpse of them down this long hallway, sprinted down the hallway and caught them as they were getting in an elevator, then rode the elevator with them and tried not to appear to be a stalker. Failed.

  25. I bet Katie is mad at you for not liking American Pickers. :)
    One time I had dinner at a table right next to Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise. Their security guard followed me to the bathroom. It was weird. I also met Roger Cross from 24. I was like a giddy little child. And then Justin Bobby from the Hills said hi to me. That was really strange. This all happened while working for a crazy lady. I am not a big celebrity fan so that job did not last long. :)

  26. I've never seen that show, but I have heard a lot about it! I met Clay Aiken at Best Buy once. I asked him to sign my Hello Kitty notebook... and he did! Nice young man. :)

  27. That is so cool that it's so close to you guys! I'm a fan of the show and I totally would have freaked out actually being in there.
    I live in Los Angeles, so I've got an unfair advantage when it comes to running into famous people. Last week I went into one of the stores that Barry Weiss from Storage Wars uses to value the weird stuff he buys. Sadly, the store was not as full of weird stuff as I had hoped.

  28. That's really awesome, I love American Pickers :)

  29. I love the show, I have a feel relatives that I think need to go on it since they have a few barns full of stuff. However, I do live just north of (about 15 minutes) Bay City, Michigan...never heard of it I bet but its the town the Madonna grew up in; I've never seen Madonna though. I also got to meet a professional baseball player...he was dating my sister.


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