The city of Topeka offers a variety of local and unique shopping to visitors or residents.
“When I first moved here for school, I thought the only shopping was West Ridge Mall,” said Katy Malek, student at Washburn University. “With a little advice from my friends, I found great shopping in some local strip malls.”
Two of Malek’s favorite stores are Boutique ten47 and The Hub.
Boutique ten47, located at 1047 SW Gage Blvd. in Fleming Place, is a clothing and accessory boutique that carries edgy fashion such as Rock Revival Denim, Kiss the Girl and French Connection.
The Hub, co-owned by Sue Dickerson and Lisa Ritchey, is Topeka’s first and only collective boutique.
“A collective boutique is a great way to bring a variety of unique and stylish merchandise under one roof,” said Ritchey. “It is also a great way for small business owners and vendors to be able to showcase their items in a large marketplace.”
The Hub carries boutique clothing for adults–as well as infants and children–jewelry and home décor. Some vendors include 424 Penn, which carries skin care and cosmetics and alleyKats vintage and chic furniture.
“We chose vendors who carried merchandise that is unique to Topeka and within a reasonable price range,” said Ritchey.
The Hub is located inside Fairlawn Plaza Mall at 21st and Fairlawn.
Fairlawn Plaza has some other stores, as well. Sweet! Baking and Candy Making Supply has a variety of bake wear, pastry decoration and candy-making needs. The shop also offers a variety of classes. The website, www.sweetbakingsupply.com, features recipes, how-to guides, printable gift lables and cupcake wrappers, all free of charge.
Classic Bean, in business for nearly 16 years, is a coffee shop that serves fresh, in-house roasted coffee, gourmet sandwiches and specialty drinks. Classic Bean has two locations, one in Fairlawn Plaza and one at 722 S. Kansas Ave.
The unique atmosphere, featuring local artwork and an outside patio, is nice for studying college students. There is a small conference room that can be used for business meetings or parties. On Friday and Saturday nights they feature local bands and artists.
“We have always been a big part of the community by helping out with coffee services, catering lunches to the board meetings and supporting charity and fund raisers with gift cards and pounds of coffee for their auctions,” said Juli Earl, owner of Classic Bean.
Another popular and unique place for food and drink, located in Thunderbird Square at 29th and Croco Rd., is Ice & Olives. Ice & Olives is a specialty market that carries a variety of cheeses and Boar’s Head meats, as well as specialty items like gourmet condiments and spices.
Brookwood Shopping Center at 29th and Oakley also offers unique shopping. Cosomo’s Indian Store features spices, teas, coffees and frozen ready-to-eat meals. In addition to food items, they sell traditional Indian beauty products, shoes and purses, Henna tattoos and belly dancing accessories.
Also located in Brookwood Shopping Center is Boss Hawg’s BBQ. Boss Hawg’s is a family owned barbeque joint based in Topeka. The restaurant features fresh, slow-smoked meats and homemade side dishes.
Maximum Golf Magazine put it in the Top 10 Best BBQ in the country, and in 2001, Boss Hawg’s was named World Brisket Champion at the Jack Daniels World Barbeque Championship.