It’s the last chance for groceries before you hit Silver Falls and can save campers or locals an hour-long round trip to town for a gallon of milk.
About two years ago, Marty and Mar’cia Schrock and their four girls, aged 4-12, moved to a farm in the Silver Crest area, with a desire to raise llamas and alpacas.
They had no idea that before long they’d be running a little grocery store nearby.
“We fell in love with this whole community,” Mar’cia said. “We love the location and the school and the people are very kind, hard working and supportive. We see reopening the store as a way to help our community and thought it would be fun.”
The store, previously owned by Lynn Sacher, was closed last fall. After making improvements both inside and out, the Schrocks reopened it in June as Dial Station.
The store’s name comes from concepts put forth by teacher/philosopher Amos Bronson Alcott, (1799-1888), father of novelist Louisa May Alcott of Little Women fame. He, along with Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau, were part of “The Transcendental Club.” Their periodical, The Dial, was named after a heading Alcott had given a collection from his journals.
172 Silver Falls Dr. NE, Silverton
Open daily 7 a.m.-9 p.m.
The Schrocks put a lot of thought into stocking the little store, four miles north of Silver Falls State Park. They wanted to make it helpful for those traveling through and a help to the community – they even try to accommodate requests. In addition to keeping staples in stock, the store has movie rentals and ready-to-eat food. There is seating inside.
Dial Station’s take-and-bake “Plateau Pizzas,” with French bread crusts, are fast becoming the store’s best seller. Among them, “Winter Falls” is topped with house-made creamy garlic sauce, artichoke hearts, chicken and sun-dried tomatoes. The “June Drake” is a combination of meat and vegetables; and the “Dialectic” is all veggies.
Seven percent of all take-and-bake pizza sales goes to the music and art programs at Silver Crest School.
Mar’cia and Marty stock some of their personal favorites, including Dave’s Killer Bread and a refrigerator full of a variety of glass bottled sodas.
“We have Mexican sodas; different root beers, cream soda, grape…” she said. “It kind of brings back that feeling of childhood.”
Dial Station sells coffee by the cup or bag from Silver Falls Coffee Co., which goes nicely with the homemade pies every Sunday, made by Schrock and her mother-in-law Vevi Schrock. Of course there’s ice cream, too.
The Schrocks have been pleased with the response from their community.
“We already have several regulars who come in about every day; many for coffee,” Mar’cia said.
“The last few months have been adventure, and we haven’t stopped yet,” she said.
They’re currently at work on opening a used bookstore – The Dialectic – in a barn on the property. Donations are welcome.
“We all love to read and enjoy getting together with our friends to discuss what we’re reading,” Schrock said.
“Experiencing the world through books is important to our existence.”
It means a lot to the couple to find a way to better the community had been so welcoming to them. Besides, Mar’cia says, heading to town is “too far to go for an ice cream cone.”