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Donna’s Country & Victorian GiftsWhere it feels like Christmas all year long

Posted: Tuesday, December 12, 2006

 

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  Gale Sutton makes an art of gift wrapping at Donna's Country & Victorian Gifts in the Blazy Mall, Soldotna.

Gale Sutton makes an art of gift wrapping at Donna's Country & Victorian Gifts in the Blazy Mall, Soldotna.

For more than two decades Donna’s Country & Victorian Gifts at the Blazy Mall in Soldotna has been a holiday shopping tradition, a place where the aromas and friendly spirit of the season is truly felt all year long. It all started when Donna Schwanke opened her first gift shop in Sterling next to the Chevron station. A couple of years later in 1984 Donna moved her small shop into the Blazy Mall in Soldotna where she set up at the front counter of the Mall. Since then her unique displays and rooms filled with specialty gift items seem to permeate and beautify the entire lower level of the Mall. “I don’t just come here to shop, I come for the shopping experience,” commented a customer, “My mother use to bring me here when I was a little girl and she would say that it made her feel like she did when she went shopping with her grandmother. You can’t just rush through Donna’s, one pretty item leads to another and then to a whole room filled with beautiful things you want to spend time looking at. I don’t care how long you spend shopping here or how many times you return, you always see something different.”

 

The friendly smiles of Pam Moglein, Donna Schwanke, and Joan Mason bring Christmas cheer all year long at Donna's Country & Victorian Gift Shop at the Blazy Mall in Soldotna.

“Everyone here works hard to keep the displays looking nice and I do go to gift show markets quite often, and I have people that make things like designer wreaths for me, but the shop is my life, I work on it and dream about it. I see things and think of how they will look in the shop, like the Northern Lights of Alaska Candles, they are just wonderful,” Donna told the Dispatch. Indeed the Northern Lights of Alaska Candles have become one of Donna’s most popular items and they fill the Mall with their fragrance.

 

The friendly smiles of Pam Moglein, Donna Schwanke, and Joan Mason bring Christmas cheer all year long at Donna's Coutnry & Victorian Gift Shop at the Blazy Mall in Soldotna.

“The best part of the business is the people, we just get wonderful people who come here and that makes it fun, women with little girls tell me they remember coming here when they were a little girl,” said Donna. But Donna’s gift shop is not just for the ladies, Alaskan men with son’s in hand also get carried away with the festive fragrances, lights and décor while finding special romantic gifts that their wives, moms and grandmom’s will truly appreciate, as well as unique items that dads and granddads will really enjoy. Gifts that have the quality to become heirlooms for generations, “We will not let a guy leave the shop with out a lovely gift wrapped package,” added Donna. Donna’s now has up to 40% savings on Christmas items. Enjoy the unique shopping experience at Donna’s Country & Victorian Gifts Monday through Saturday 10:00am 6:00pm and Sunday 12:00 noon to 4:00pm.



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