Pack Rat Antiques

Kaitlyn Wilcox, Reporter

Pack Rat Antique is an antique shop just down the street from West High School, but despite its proximity it’s not exactly known as the popular hangout spot for teenagers. An underappreciated local treasure, Pack Rat is full of not only pieces of Alaska’s history, but all sorts of nostalgic goodies. You don’t to be a big history buff to enjoy the store either, with around 30 antique dealers in the shop and countless consignors; there is a little something for everyone.

    Individual dealer separates the store, with a few genre themed sections for the stray items. When asked what the oldest dealer in the shop was, worker BreAnn Kim said, “That would be Phil and Holly’s booth up front… they’ve been around for almost 30 years and they have the most variety.” She didn’t go into any details as to who the mysterious Phil and Holly were, but just looking around at their booth you can see an eclectic array of furniture, jewelry, and other miscellaneous things. You could easily get lost just looking around those first 15 feet of the store.

    For vintage clothing lovers the upstairs and back rooms of Pack Rat are heaven. Racks of dresses any modern pin-up or old soul would give their left leg for. Shoes and handbags line the floor and walls of small, open rooms. Everything from grandma approved leather gloves, to your Mom’s prom dress from the 80’s is displayed throughout the building. Pillbox hats fit for Jackie Kennedy lay on chairs and atop mannequins, broaches hide in jewelry box drawers and glitter on antique mirrors. The smell of decades old perfume still lingers on the surrounding fabric. Everything you touch has a life of its own that you may never know, every shirt or fur coat was worn by some person of the past, it’s like a time machine closet.

    There are a variety of other collectable items as well. Arfilo Rodriguez, a customer at the store, says he like to go there for, “Old toys and weapons.” He went on to talk about one of his more interesting purchases, a Fonzie doll that he thought was just to funny to not pick up. Another customer, Sophie Jones, says shopping at Pack Rat is like, “Exploring a really, really old house that full of gold.” That’s one sparkling review.

    Pack Rat is an adventure all in one building. No matter what a person’s interests they can be sure to have fun exploring history there. Every section has its own unique feel to it, every item its own life. If you want to find something no one else you know is likely to have, be it a dress or a dining room table, Pack Rat Antiques is the place to go.