An interview with Judy Torppa, owner of Just Treasures Antique Mall and Ice Cream Parlor, 102 First Ave. South, Ilwaco, Wash.
Judy Torppa's home grown antique business has been a fixture in the Pacific Northwest for over 30 years and Ilwaco for two years. The new location at the four-way light in downtown Ilwaco expands the business to include an old-fashioned ice cream parlor and deli. Now patrons can please their palate while perusing the past. They are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, later if busy. For more information, call (360) 642-2004.
Tell us about your new addition.
"We moved here two weeks ago from our old house at 410 Spruce St. We have a five year lease here next to Chuck McNeill's hardware store and English pub. This is my sixth shop. I had two shops in Puyallup, one in Spanaway and one in Naselle for eight years. This is my first time with an ice cream parlor and deli. We have a daily lunch special. Diana Siner is our full time cook, and Jan May is my interior decorator and right-hand-girl. She is working on a High Tea room in a French style where we will offer fancy French pastries, scones and serve tea and coffee."
What do you offer here?
"We have homemade soups, sandwiches, ice cream sundaes, banana splits, smoothies and pastries."
Why did you move to an ice cream parlor?
"I thought it would be cool to try something new. This is also a good way to get people to come in and see what we have in antiques."
What brought your business to Ilwaco?
"I grew up in this area. When I retired from working up north, I moved back. I have been living in Naselle for 10 years but people just drive through town and don't stop. I moved the business here two years ago and plan to build a house here."
Tell us about the antiques.
"We have several rooms with different themes. We have crystal, pottery and jewelry in the first room. Then we have older kitchen ware and pewter from the '50s and '60s era. In another area you will find my dealers, lots of '60s guy stuff, like fishing reels, knives and nautical things. The Lewis and Clark room is shared with Blackfoot Indian handmade baskets, jewelry and bracelets. Roselinda Perez, a Montana Blackfoot, makes this exclusively for me. Then there is the hand painted glassware by Teresa Wood of Naselle, my daughter-in-law. I have a vintage clothing room including hats, purses and furniture."
Where do you find the rustic picture frames?
"In my spare time I make hand-made rustic picture frames. I make them any size and will custom make them for anyone."
What is your volume like here?
"At present, because of fuel, people don't spend much on antiques. It has been real slow this winter. It has already picked up a lot because of the new location and the deli brings people in.