Ever Been to Bog Bean?
● By Brandi Barnett
Treasure TroueMarch 2007
By D. James O'Brien
Nestled in the old downtown of Redding, there is a store unlike any other. Bog Bean bears a plethora of items from different eras and lifestyle persuasions.
Upon the inspection of one wall, you might find the words of Faulkner and Hemingway, but could easily bump into the collected works of a local poet that has not been read, but by a few select eyes. And with a music selection as diverse as the employees and personalities that careen through the place, it would be easy to find the soulful crooning of Miles Davis alongside the head-banging sounds of your favorite heavy metal band.
Walking through the store, you are struck by an eerie sense of modernism coupled with a stroll down nostalgic lane, this time only with a pulse. Established in 1991 by owner Ben Bambauer, it has made itself very much a part of the Redding culture, buying and selling a veritable cornucopia of used products and vintage collectibles from a variety of eras.
As I perused through the store on a wintry January morning, I was struck by the soft melodies of Alice Straut singing “Big Boss Man.”When I inquired of the women at the front,Holly and Shannon, they informed me that it had been a recent acquisition. Bog Bean purchases gems from local residents, enhancing their amazing selection.
A Jackson 5 turntable sits high above the shelves as I look through the library of VHS and DVDs that range from Fargo to For The Boys starring BetteMidler. Records hung from the ceilings on strings like blackened chandeliers. The place truly pays homage to all things past and present, a wonderful collection of treasures that defined a century.
If ever you are looking for a dusty copy of LesMiserables, or perhaps a record from a long-forgotten period of history, why not give the Bog Bean a gander? You may not find what you were looking for that day, but you will no doubt recall something from your past that will brighten your day.�
Bog Bean is located at 1740 California St, Redding. (530) 246-8657