This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Shopping at Jasper Junction

Six miles north of downtown Rensselaer, at the intersection of U.S. Highway 231 and State Road 14, there is a flea market/second-hand store called Jasper Junction. It is run by CDC Resources, a non-profit organization that provides services for the developmentally disabled in Benton, Carroll, Jasper, Newton, and White counties.
Jasper Junction was opened in 2005. The building had been empty for a number of years after Weinberg's had gone out of business. There was also a Weinberg's store at Toto that I think specialized in wall paper. I think it was run by a relative of the Rensselaer Weinberg. I have not been to Toto for many years, but according to the Internet, there are still discount stores there. On the north end of the store are about 80 booths that vendors rent. They have a wide range of things, from antiques to collectibles to flea-market junk. On this visit, I ignored them and focused on the rest of Jasper Junction. The section of clothing is Rensselaer's answer to Goodwill.
More of the floor space is devoted to non-clothing items than in most Goodwills. There is a section of dishes and other kitchen items and housewares, plus they have a lot of knick-knack items.Renting half the building to vendors provides a steady stream of revenue for CDC, but it does cut down on the space for the second hand store. As a result, things are tightly packed. The turnover of items is pretty good, so I like to stop in whenever I am in the area (which is actually fairly infrequent.)The store also has a little area that serves meals. The people who run this also cater the annual CDC dinner.
My favorite part of Jasper Junction is the "Man Building" in the back. It has no clothing--just stuff.
It is poorly lit, but that only adds to the adventure of trying to find a treasure. On one visit I found a defuser for an ancient lamp that I have. On another I got a deal on a USB computer mouse. I do not think the ladies who do such a neat job of displaying the stuff in the main store ever go to the Man Building. It looks like the stuff has been arranged by a man.
Do you need old computer monitors or crutches? How about old computer printers or skis? If people donate it, it is there.
Because I have no room to put any more furniture, the furniture building, also in the back, is not as interesting for me. But I am sure if you have some rooms to fill, a trip now and then to Jasper Junction would yield some treasures. Old furniture is often better built than new furniture. One reason is survival bias: if it has survived for a long time, it probably was well made.
If you have never visited Jasper Junction, you are missing one of Rensselaer's adventures.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Jasper Junction is the BEST! Whenever I need something and don't want to pay retail or may not even be able to find it retail, Jasper Junction has had it. It might involve a treasure hunt. I have found a Corning ware lid, a microwave plate, a high chair, an artificial Christmas tree - fully decorated! all for very little cost. The adventure is worth the trip. The best part is that the money goes to a good cause. Everyone wins.

Sarah said...

My favorite Jasper Junction find was the breast pump my sister-in-law found in the Man Store.

Anonymous said...

It wasn't just a breat pump. It was a double electric breast pump. a true treasure

Anonymous said...

I got a Johnny Jump up there in one of the vendor booths. And I wanted to get a lot more from the furniture and Man buildings, but I didn't have room to take it home with me, and no one else had space. There are some great treasures out there.

Anonymous said...

Nice informative, accurate article with good photographs! Thanks! Readers may also want to hear of the 50% off days, first and third Thursday of each month. (Only the store side and outside buildings, NOT he private vendors! I think they also have a pajama day discount and a senior day discount each month.

Anonymous said...

Mark your calendars, people!
Jasper Junction is celebrating their birthday once again on August 4th, 2011- Everything in the thrift store, their furniture building and "Man-Cave" will be 50% off!
The private vendors booths will be running great sales as well. Door prizes every ten minutes- birthday cake- the place is PACKED with shoppers who know where to find the best deals, for personal use, to re-sell online, to stock their antiques or collectibles store with...Join in the fun!

Anonymous said...

Jasper Junction is on my 'travel' list this month as I'm needing to purchase more books to read during South Shore commute. Then I trade them at local library for the 'free' paperbacks. It's a good system. JJ is full of treasures. I still have several rolls of wallpaper from the old Weinberg's in Toto. Back in the 60s Toto was the ultimate discount shopping experience with my parents. Mom furnished an entire home with Toto findings. I wish Mom & Dad were still alive so I could take them to Jasper Junction. It would be so much more fun. I'm not oohing and aahing when shopping alone.

Anonymous said...

I love this place! I purchased quite a few treasures to fill my house after we first bought it. I have gotten furniture, clothing, winter coats, and many other items there. It truly is a treasure in Jasper County!

patty said...

jasper junction is the best..the workers are very friendly and the treasures are endless

Anonymous said...

This place is one of the best kept secrets in our county. They have a clean, well organized thrift store with pleasant staff. Picked up a vintage Technics receiver in one of the booths. Good pricing across the board and benefits the local program for disabled.

Anonymous said...

When you go to Jasper Junction, BE SURE to check out Booth 72, it is a glass booth by the register area, they have "Power Balance Wrist Bands" in all different colors and sizes for I think it was about $9.00 each and also Carribean Style Jewelry,.925 Sterling Silver, with genuine stones that are beautiful, mostly rings. With the price of Silver hovering between $31.00 to $34.00 per ounce the Jewelry is not only beautiful to wear but it is an investment today as the Dollar goes down in value the Silver and Gold go up!!

Anonymous said...

I am here with Henry Weinberg the former owner. He is glad to see what became of his store.