It is summer and the tourist season is in full swing in “County Door” and O'Meara's Irish House is ready to greet you once again.
O’Meara’s Irish House is situated in Fish Creek, which is the center of this gorgeous visitor destination between the shores of Lake Michigan and Green Bay in Door County, Wisconsin.
The Irish store has been welcoming customers and friends for nearly 50 years. Megan O’Meara purchased the store in 1999 and is going into her 22nd season.
She reflects, “Coming off a year of uncertainty in small business, it’s wonderful to see people enjoying Door County again. It’s especially wonderful to see smiling faces in person.”
The nearly 2,000 square foot store holds a treasure trove of woolens, jewelry, giftware, pottery, and sportswear. Some of the newer offerings include Dubarry of Ireland, Rathborne Candles, and Nicholas Mosse Pottery.
“During the time our store was closed to the public last spring, it was a good time to plan and prepare for the next chapter,” O’Meara remembers. "I started to think about all of the vendors in Ireland and in the US that we’ve dealt with for so many years and how best we could support them since they’ve supported us in such incredible ways. I knew that we had to increase our orders and make sure that new and fresh merchandise would be arriving daily.”
This plan worked well with the increase in traffic to Door County over their off-season. “Typically, it is a little quieter after the holidays, however, the county never really slowed down this past winter. People wanted a winter escape where they could keep their distance while still enjoying outdoor recreations like snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Some also wanted to participate in our favorite indoor recreation - shopping!” O’Meara laughs.
In addition to bringing the best of Ireland to Door County, Megan also organizes tours to Ireland. Her spring 2020 tour and rescheduled 2021 were put on hold, so she has planned two tours to Ireland next April.
“My customers cannot wait to get back to traveling around Ireland again and neither can I. We’ve missed the people, the incredible scenery, and all the laughs.” One tour is already sold out and the other tour is just over half full. The group sizes are smaller and will be capped at twenty-six.
Since the itineraries are custom-made and planned by Megan, she includes visits to some of her favorite vendors in Ireland. “It’s so great to see where things are made and the whole process from start to finish.” Her tour stops have included visits to Fado Jewelry and Branigan Weavers.
Customers can also stay above O’Meara’s Irish House in their newly renovated guest house aptly named O’Meara’s Cottage Loft. The darling 500 square foot rental includes a super comfortable king-size bed, a full kitchen, and a brand new 3-piece bathroom.
To make reservations or to see the best that Ireland has to offer, visit their website or in person in Fish Creek year-round at 3970 Main Street. Information about their upcoming tours and future events can also be found on their website, Facebook or Instagram.