The small town of Bowmanville has been good to my books, but I visit as often as I can because I love this town.
I don’t live there, but some of my favourite places and people do.
*The people at what I have called “The friendliest centre I know in Canada: BOAA”. (An association for adults over 50, where friendly volunteers, members or staff greet you the moment you enter.)
*The heritage district of gorgeous old homes with huge trees and lawns covered with blue Scilla in Spring
*The small stores and restaurants — some family-owned, even by the third-generation of local families — that line the streets.
And my favourite store in all of Ontario: The Willow Branch.
Owned by two sisters, Tammy and Rebecca, sometimes helped out by younger relatives.
You go into The Willow Branch expecting one thing, and you find a treasure-trove.
It’s a gift store, a candle store, a what-wonderful-things-will-I-find-today kind of store.
The store’s contents reflect the seasons (and a sense of humour), though the florist shop at the back is always blooming.
Almost any gift you could need to buy for someone is here, whether it’s Summer outdoorsy or Autumny or Hallowe’eny stuff.
Or thick wool socks for the Canadian Winter, or something for the fireplace.
Fun gifts for adults or children, male or female — it’s all there. (You’ll even find my Myrtle the Purple Turtle books there.)
And what else you’ll find, in great abundance?
Polite, friendly, helpful service.
Brava to Tammy and Rebecca!
The Willow Branch is located in the Heritage district on Bowmanville’s main street, at 77 King Street.