From Europe to Sunburst, Montana

Many people have not heard of the small community of Sunburst but I had a fun visit there recently.

So, where is Sunburst? It is north of Shelby, between Sweetgrass and the port of entry, and a very easy exit off I-15.

I noticed a sign for European Antiques which definitely intrigued me. The new-looking log building was beautiful with nice landscaping.

I went up to the door only to realize that they weren’t open on the particular day I happened to be there – bummer! But, there was a sign directing interested people to the large house behind the antique store. I debated about whether I should go. After all, I was just a curious “looker” not an antique shopper but I really wanted to see the inside. I decided to peek around the corner and was met by the owner who had seen me drive up to the antique store.

She was more than pleased to open the store and show me around. I learned that they had begun as a small antique store, relocating from southern Montana. They also had a deli in the antique store but that was phased out and there was more room for antiques. Before they ended up in Montana they were from Europe, hence the name and the connection to European antiques.

The first thing I noticed was a group of cowbells – huge, huge bells with beautifully decorated straps. I also have some decorative cowbells but they are about 3 inches long, nothing like these bells!

I spent a lot of time looking at unique china and glassware (a weakness of mine).

As I roamed around I must have had a puzzled look on my face and the owner began to explain that I was looking at very old firemen’s helmets. There were also grenades from World War II, furniture (a beautiful and very old cradle) and other things I couldn’t identify!

My stop in Sunburst was a blast. I did not expect to find such a unique store in this tiny town. My advice – take time to visit some of our small towns with locally owned businesses.

And really, couldn’t you use an antique fire helmet?

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