Jennifer Shorter

Jennifer Shorter and her mother, Mari Shorter at Sidewalk Sales 2019 I’m not going to lie: not having to haul stuff to the street last July was pretty blissful for me. Sidewalk Sales are a big job. A huge job. Monumental in a good year. Even harder in the middle of a pandemic and an employee s...
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Categories:  Events

Did you have retail experience before running Shorter’s? Yes, I was the oldest of seven children and we were all expected to work. Mom made sure we did and said, “out of the house, not underfoot”. I was a clerk in a bakery, Stuckey’s Rexall drug store, and a dress shop (this was when I d...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

The Katydid, which opened in 2018 next door to Grandpa Shorter’s Gifts at 305 E. Lake Street, is the latest venture for our family. Focusing on “cultivated finds from near and far” the store finds reclaimed, recycled, and handcrafted goods crafted by artists, with a heavy focus on Michiga...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

What do you remember most about the store and your parents growing up? I began my tenure at Shorter’s Indian Craft Shop at the early age of five. Each spring at first snowmelt my father and I would travel along the Tunnel of Trees lakeshore north of Harbor Springs to purchase items crafted...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

1996 marked the 50th anniversary of Grandpa Shorter’s Gifts, as well as the renovation of the façade of the storefront to look like its original appearance. After a suggestion by my mom, Dad restored the historic look and put deed restrictions in place to ensure the historic preservation of ...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

This summer at Grandpa Shorter’s Gifts we are celebrating our 75th year in business! To mark this occasion, we are asking all artists ages 14 and under to participate in our Carlos Coloring Contest. Enter to win by adding your own flair to our new logo on a reusable tote bag. Feel free to ...
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Categories:  Kids Club

My grandpa, Carl, was a genius at marketing his business through all his years. He used billboards all over northern Michigan. He even had one painted on the top of a barn! He held in-store events with Native American artists and stamped their art with “Ottawa Indian Made”. He used moccasin ...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

The second branch of Shorter’s Gifts opened in Indian River in 1960 in a log cabin building. This was a seasonal shop that operated from May to December and was run by many of my family members, including my dad. The Indian River store closed after the 1983 season. The Shorter’s franchis...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

In 1950, the shop acquired more space in the building and more than doubled in size. Two years later the Petoskey Evening News reported that “Shorter’s Indian Craft Shop, here seven years, is one of the few summer businesses that operate solely in this city. Carl Shorter, who spends his win...
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Categories:  Legacy & History

Carl started as a Pharmacist’s Apprentice and then was a very successful manager of Teysen’s Gift Shops in Mackinaw City in the summer seasons of 1940, ‘41, and ‘42. Even though the country was still in the Great Depression, Carl was able to double the sales of Teysen’s Gift Shop! There w...
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Categories:  Legacy & History