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Billings antique mall sees record number of sales during the pandemic

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Posted at 5:24 PM, Jan 08, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-09 10:49:40-05

BILLINGS — The pandemic wasn’t good for a lot of businesses but one thing it did do was spark considerable interest in antiquing. Stores like YesterYears Antique Mall in downtown Billings saw record sales during and after the pandemic.

Danny Kramer’s ownership of YesterYears Antique Mall stemmed from his childhood love of antiquing.

“I’ve always had the heart and passion for antiques, stuff that lasts,” Danny Kramer said on Saturday.

He bought the 25,000-square-foot antique mall a few years ago and operates the business with his family. His son Austin is the manager.

“Before we owned the shop, I didn’t care much for antiques, but his excitement over it definitely rubbed off on our family,” said Austin Kramer.

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Now, the family-owned business is flourishing, even at the height of the pandemic.

“We’ve thrived through the pandemic. I mean we had the five weeks we were down, and other than that we’ve had record sales for the past three years,” said Danny.

A lot of box chain stores either closed or had limited inventory due to shipping delays during the pandemic, whereas at an antique store, all the merchandise is right there at your fingertips.

“I think people are getting smart, they want to buy stuff that lasts. At an antique mall, you can buy a piece of furniture that’s going to last your whole life,” Danny said.

The mall gets customers from all over the country. Allison Morrison and her family were visiting Billings from Powell, Wyoming.

“It’s filled with super unique and awesome items that I can see just about any person coming in here and finding their item,” said Morrison.

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With over 100 vendors in the three-story building, there’s a little something for everyone. Megan Greenwood said she’s all about finding reusable and sustainable items.

“I try to come at least once a month ‘cuz I like to see the new stuff and try to find my pickle jars which I’ve finally found after a couple of years,” Greenwood said.

Danny said that YesterYears’ popularity has helped bring foot traffic to other businesses downtown as well.

“I think downtown Billings is booming. The businesses are coming back. We got the House of Books which moved on our block because of YesterYears Antique Mall,” said Danny.

And the Kramers are grateful for the community’s support.

“It very nice to see people come down and support the local businesses, support our family and the 85 small business that we cater to,” Austin said.

You can find more information about YesterYears Antique Mall here.