Support local dreams and real Las Vegas community at Fergusons Downtown

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View of Ferguson's Downtown Sign at Night. Photo by Author.

If you want your money to support your community, Fergusons Downtown is your go-to shopping place. Skip Galleria or the outlet malls, and come where everything is locally made, sourced, and crafted by people who care about their craft, their creations and their community. 

Fergusons Downtown is a hub and a haven for Las Vegas creativity and goods. The return of their monthly Market in the Alley, an outdoor market featuring 30-40 local vendors of all kinds, is just the beginning of Fergusons’s trove of treasurable experiences. The main shopping space hosts around 10 shops around the main walkway, a Mothership Coffee Roasters below the lawn, and a few restaurants near the entrance. 

Right next door, there is also the Vegas Test Kitchen and Gather House. Gather House is another little hub for small businesses, featuring a few shops on each side of the hallway.

Fergusons is built from a renovated old motel, where the old rooms have become stores and the old center space has become a well-constructed lawn featuring stone steps and grassy edges that are perfect for picnics and poetry slams. On the second floor is where all the shops are as well as a patio littered with outdoor seating, a fire pit and a small bar. The ambiance alone is worth the journey, as you can just bring a picnic and sit on the lawn for a while, taking pictures amidst the beautiful greenery, architecture and iconic blue and silver semi-truck sculpture in front.  

However, you definitely should not miss out on the shops, because they contain so many gems and favorites-to-be. Every shop is locally-owned, usually by a handful of passionate people who started out doing something they loved, but the community helped become their full-time gig. Shops are also often staffed by artists, poets or other small business owners who are also trying to fuel their dreams. 

Also, almost all of every shop’s selection comes from local creators or small businesses. Hardly anything is mass-produced or from a big company, creating a space that is truly supporting Las Vegas and small creatives on every level. All of this adds to the inspiring nature of the place, as it actually feels communal and comforting knowing that your money is supporting someone’s passion, instead of who knows what. And do not come in a rush, asking the owners and keepers about their projects and stories is part of the joy of coming here. 

For plant and flower shops, there are Tiny Bloom and LV Plant Collective. Tiny Bloom is a dainty and adorable florist, with handmade colorful bouquets, custom plant arrangements, seasonal dried bouquets, and a small array of cards, candles, and other giftables to go along with your flowers. LV Plant Collective is where you can find new plant babies while asking the shopkeeper how not to kill them this time. They also have several goods for plant lovers, like little plant cowboy hats, pots, stands, hangers, and pot decorations. Even if you are not much of a plant keeper, but love plant aesthetics, their cards, totes, temporary tattoos, and accessories are always lush and lovely. Both shops are fairly affordable for a local florist and plant shop. Of course, it will not be as cheap as a big-name place, but nothing feels outrageous for the quality of care and goods you are getting.

For the thrifters, Neon Cactus is a vintage store owned by the sweetest BIPOC couple. Their style is eclectic and adventurous, as they have curated so many racks of vests, shirts, dresses, and pants from several eras and fashion moments. Their silk shirts are my personal favorite, as well as their handmade stained glass Nevada earrings or necklaces. They also sell various old-fashioned accessories, from vintage pins, postcards and magazines, to scarves, hairpins, and earrings. Expect to pay a curated vintage price rather than a bargain thrift one, but anything you purchase there is certain to become a staple of your style. Also, the owners foster kittens on the side and following their journey @queerfostercats brings me endless joy.

Then, for all sorts of goods, there are the Market Shop, Hey Maker and All For Our Country. All three have their own vibes and styles, but I highly recommend exploring all of them to see what strikes you most. Market Shop is the retail version of Market in the Alley, featuring several of the creators from the established pop-up marketplace. Their selection is constantly changing and has all kinds of goods, from candles to embroidery to poetry to body care to clothing, for all kinds of people. 

Hey Maker is one of the newer shops at Fergusons and is a bit smaller, but still features a handful of accessories, candles, and home goods other stores do not. For a touch of whimsy and artful color, Hey Maker is a great space to stop in. 

Finally, All For Our Country is one of the original shops at Fergusons and has a vast array of goods, from shirts, bandanas, to wall hooks and to dining ware. Both Hey Maker and Market Shop are fairly affordable, but I find All For Our Country to have a bit more luxury pricing. 

I usually always get a few things from the first two places, but really have to be in love with something to pull out my wallet at All For Our Country. However, all three are always worth a walkthrough because you really never know what you might fall in love with. 

Another cannot-miss shop is Minimal Market, which is the only refill store in Nevada currently. If you are looking for affordable, handmade, and environmentally-friendly goods, this is a must-stop. I drive down to Fergusons for Minimal Market alone, it is that vital to my existence, and it should be to yours too. They have everything from shampoo, deodorant, tooth powder, toothbrushes, sugar scrub, body wash, body oil and face wash for body care, while also having scouring scrubs, dish soap, laundry detergent and so, so much more for the home.

The environmentalist in me adores Minimal Market, but the thrifty part of me loves it even more- with eight ounces of handmade, luscious sugar scrub costing only $5 and a 12-ounce bottle of body oil costing about $10. You can stock up on a jar of tooth powder for $5 that will genuinely last you a year, or buy a block of dish soap that will last for months longer than your Dawn bottle. All your basic self-care, cleaning, and homeware essentials can be fulfilled here at extremely affordable rates, even cheaper than you might find at Target or Walgreens, with the added benefit of being far more eco-conscious, supporting local businesses and possibly lasting far longer too. 

A huge perk of Minimal Market is not just the vast array of products they have but also their products on-tap. You can bring mason jars, cups and bottles from home to get weighed and refilled with any of their liquid or powder products. I have brought a whole backpack full of containers and walked away with jars upon jars of much needed cleaners and body products. Many of the other stores here are fun and lovely, but Minimal Market has landed itself as one of my go-to stops for errands now, and I would not have it any other way. If I could make you go to Fergusons for one place only, it would be here.

A few shops I have never wandered into myself are Mike’s Recovery, Future Makers, and Le Pup Cafe. However, they still are all beloved by the Fergusons community. Mike’s Recovery has great body care products, bath salts, and lotions, while Future Makers is home to kid-centered workshops, crafts, and goods. Le Pup Cafe has a whole menu of dog treats and creations that I am sure the Las Vegas dog community is very grateful for. 

Fergusons is also home to a few service-based places I also have never tried, but have heard great things about. The Noise Project is a hair salon that operates by appointment-only and is known for its one-of-a-kind and custom hair cut and care services. If you really want a classic 70s shag or a cut that is truly a piece of art, look no further. Another place is Myron Hensel Photography, which uses traditional photography techniques to create tintype photos that will literally last a lifetime. 

Lastly, there is the whole of Gather House, where a few rooms serve as homes for several shops. The shops include Deeply Rooted, Love Em Couture, Tofu Tees, Sun in Pisces, and Crowded Mouth. They all have their own special products and spins, with Deeply Rooted featuring soulful workshops, custom tea blends, and soul-care products, Sun in Pisces holding crystals and meditation goods, Love Em Couture, Tofu Tees and Crowded Mouth selling apparel and accessories with a mission. It is definitely worth the stroll to see what resonates with you and find items that mirror your personal values and lifestyle. 

After all of that, there are still restaurants in the yard for you to enjoy. Vegas Test Kitchen is the main Fergusons staple, with an ever-changing menu of various restaurant concepts from celebrated local chefs. You can find ramen, pizza, noodles, hot dogs, pies, ceviche, rolls, seafood and so, so much more depending on when you come by. I always love stopping by post a Fergusons shopping session to see what they have on the menu, and another classic option is to take out a pizza and have a picnic on the lawn. However, the Test Kitchen’s alleyway has such great city vibes, often featuring live music performances to accompany your eccentric meal. Every chef is a local talent which continues the Fergusons goal of being rooted in the Las Vegas community.

And there is so much more behind and around Fergusons as a place that makes it my absolute favorite part of Las Vegas. It hosts countless events featuring local talent and art, from poetry festivals and slams to comedy nights to full moon ceremonies to community celebrations to wellness festivals. It is a place with a heartbeat that wants you to tap in, stay rooted, and become a part of something bigger and better than you could be alone. 

Fergusons has been the launchpad for so many dreams, passion projects, and visions turned careers and lifestyles, especially for us Las Vegas natives who may have never had a real place to call ours before. If you have any desire to be a part of the true Vegas community, to support local, BIPOC, LGBTQ+ or female-owned businesses that support your values or lifestyle, or to just find truly special and one-of-a-kind things at an affordable price, Fergusons is a must-stop for you. 

Now, I know it is a bit of a trek from UNLV, but it is well worth it. There is free parking around, but I highly recommend just parking at Llama Lot for $5 for all-day parking. It is the cheapest parking downtown, and it is even pretty close to Container Park if you wanted to wander a bit more. Fergusons itself is gated with greeters at the front and requires face masks for the main areas. Also, their restrooms are spotless and creatively decorated, with all of them open to all genders. 

Fergusons is open every day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with most shops being open on Wednesday through Sunday. My best recommendation is to come on a Friday when there are fewer people, but still enough energy in the shops as they prepare for the weekend. Enjoy the lawn, take forever, and plan to spend as much time as possible in this truly incredible space. 

If you want to come to something bigger, the next Market in the Alley is Sunday, Nov. 21 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. which will feature over 50 local vendors, plus all the shops already at Fergusons. Plus, they will be hosting another market for Small Business Saturday of Nov. 27 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Both would be great opportunities to do your holiday shopping, or to just Christmas shop for yourself.
If you want to be connected to their calendar and upcoming events, find out more at fergusonsdowntown.com, sign-up for their e-mail newsletter, and follow them on Instagram at @fergusonsdowntown.

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