This little store is set up in the old Aurora train station. While they sometimes have a number of things that are train related, the fact is like any of the antique stores in Aurora they have a wide assortment that depends highly on what they happen across to acquire.
However, they tend to have items that are from the 1920s through 1950s - the era in which railroads featured highly in the American consciousness, and certainly there are railroad related items here.
If for some strange reason they don't happen to have any railroad related items, there is always the ex-Oregon & California, ex-Southern Pacific, now Union Pacific owned main line railroad that runs 10 feet from the store. It is, after all, the old railroad station.
Located here on the south side of Aurora for as long as I can remember, the Candy Factory manufactures products for an assortment of stores and distributors. However, they have a true factory outlet store in front of their processing plant, which provides a direct point of sale to anyone who happens to be wandering by.
Don't let the gravel parking lot out front fool you: the store itself has been remodeled several times in my memory to offer expanded space. However, the gravel parking lot is the same now as it was decades ago.
The current hours (last visit December 19, 2011) are 10 to 5 Monday through Saturday, with limited hours on Sunday in preparation for the Christmas rush.
Tip on Getting Here: There are no sidewalks along 99E between downtown Aurora and Ottaway, though there are sidewalks on Ottaway, oddly enough. If you want to walk here from downtown Aurora, go south on Main Street through the residential part of down to Ottaway, and then over to highway 99E. You still have to be very careful crossing this very busy highway but the walking route on Main and Ottaway goes next to very low traffic residential streets that are not dangerous to walk next to at all. The walking time from downtown Aurora is approximately 10 minutes.
What to buy: You will find a wide variety of items for sale here. Generally you should try some of the free samples first to determine what type you prefer (but please don't pig out as some of the people who visit are known to do - the samples are for your experimentation not exploitation!!). "Sampler Packages" are offered that include an assortment of different types of candy in a single container, and this is a good bet and reasonably good value. These are offered in several different sizes.
Truffles, lemon bars, bags of hazel nuts without any candy coating at all, share the shelves with blueberries or marionberries (a type of blackberry developed right here in Marion County!) coated with chocolate.
From time to time you can also find memorabilia of various types, including the Oregon Christmas Ornament and sculptures made from crushed hazelnut shells. However, they make an irregular appearance.
What to pay: Small bags may be had for as little as $6, while the large packages of multiple different types of chocolate coated fruit and nuts go for $38. Yes, it is a little more expensive than the mass produced candy you can find in a grocery store, but at the same time you won't find this type of thing in the grocery store.
Unfortunately, in many cases when historic buildings are demolished the various pieces of the remains are usually just dumped in a landfill somewhere. In the Portland, Oregon area there are in fact several very large landfills that take nothing but demolition debris.
As Aurora is a historic community, you would hope that such bits and pieces would find their way to better homes. Thus the creation of Aurora Mills Architectural Salvage.
Here, the various historical bits and pieces that have come off historical buildings over the years are able to find their way to new homes. While some of the structure remains are from the Portland area, some of the items are not necessarily from around here.
The store is open Tuesday through Sundays 10 to 5, and closed on Mondays.
What to buy: Building parts and pieces mostly. Unique door knobs, antique windows, even old fountains from demolished estate homes and park lands. Carved wood decorations from glorious old homes. Unique drawer handles.
It all changes from one month to the next, depending on what has been demolished and what has and hasn't sold.
What to pay: The operators of Aurora Mills Architectural Salvage are pretty good at determining what the market will bear for their salvaged gems. You may not think the item is worth the price, but someone somewhere will pay the price they are asking for it.