FREMONT — Winter may not be the best time for weddings, but that isn’t stopping the Mill District from helping people make memories during the holidays.
The Mill District, 6770 E. 750N, is a local wedding venue that boasts picturesque northeast Indiana scenery and seven historic mill buildings collected from the surrounding area.
The buildings serve different purposes for wedding events, and one of them now houses The Store, a holiday gift shop open through November and December.
“It’s nice to meet people, and it’s really special for the people in the community to come here and see what we have if they weren’t invited to a wedding here,” said Jourdan Thomson, co-owner of The Mill District.
The Store, which had a soft opening on Nov. 5 before officially opening to the public, features fall and Thanksgiving decor as well as a snowy theme for the winter holidays.
Visitors can grab a coffee in the store and shop for various gifts, such as clothes, homemade goods, trinkets and more. Jourdan also plans to have samples of food available in the store available on a daily rotating schedule.
“I wanted something to do in the winter,” Jourdan said. “So this gives people an opportunity to come shop, maybe pick up a few Christmas gifts or a candle for your home, and then that also allows them to walk around the other buildings and tour around to see what we have to offer.”
Many of the items available in The Store are locally sourced from gift shows and saleswomen. Jourdan has been curating the shop’s collection since July and continues to search for new additions every day.
“There’s something for all budgets, all people, all ages,” she said. “New stuff is arriving every week, so now until Christmas Eve, we’ll be moving around The Store.”
Jourdan named her holiday shop The Store in honor of her family tradition. Her mother, Libby Hysong, owns Libby’s in Angola, a store that has stayed in the family for multiple generations.
“I’ve grown up in small business. I knew I was going to have a business,” Jourdan said. “We always called the store, ‘The Store.’ So I said I was just naming this, ‘The Store’ at the Mill District.”
Jourdan’s store is located in the Water Mill, one of the seven buildings on The Mill District property. Aside from The Store, visitors are also able to tour the other buildings, such as the Reception Barn and the Mill Lodge.
Jourdan has decorated both for the holidays so people can have an idea of what the buildings could look like during their own events.
Many opt to have their weddings outdoors at the Reception Barn, but an indoor chapel featuring vintage European stained glass windows and specially-modified pews from local churches is available in the Mill Lodge for rainy days.
Lodging for parties is also available in the Cottage and Post Office buildings for those who wish to stay on-site for their event.
“We really have a lot to offer here,” Jourdan said. “I like building the experience with people.”
The Mill District had been previously used as a wedding venue under the name Old Mill Village until Jourdan and her husband James bought the property in January and continued the business under its new name.
Jourdan hopes to keep The Store open year-round but would like to get through its first holiday season before making any permanent decisions.
“We’ve had a lot of great feedback, even since we just opened,” Jourdan said. “We’re going to see how it does.”
For more information about The Mill District, visit themill-district.com.