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Sand Lake Party Store

May 6, 2019

  • 25595 M-86
  • Sturgis, MI 49075
  • (269) 467-7661
  • Website
  • Menu

Well….I was going to mow the lawn.  I was going to clean out the garage.  I was going to….but it was such a nice day.  J mom texted her and invited us out to their house in St. Joseph County.  The boat is in and they wanted to take the kids for a ride.  Yard work can wait.

J ordered lunch for herself and kids from Panera right before her mom texted her so we had to wait for that.  I’m not a big Panera fan and just figured I’d eat leftovers from the BC Pizza we had in the fridge.  I guess I still could of done that but the short time we had until the food was delivered, we needed to get stuff ready to go to the Lake House for the day.

I was thinking I would just drop everyone off at the house then drive into Sturgis to find something to eat.  Sturgis isn’t far but, honestly, I was kinda wanting to just get in the boat and cruise around the lake too so I decided to stop on our way and pick something up real quick.

Sand Lake Party Store is a heckuva find in rural St. Joseph County.  It’s on M-86 in the small unincorporated community of Nottawa near the M-86 and Nottawa Road intersection.  It looks like the typical small town gas station but they have so much more inside.

The Sand Lake Party Store is a combination gas station, grocery store, butcher store, ice cream shop, party store, and pizza shop.  If you walk all the way to the back there is a fresh meat case with a lot of meat.  Steaks, burgers, chicken…whatever you want for your cook-out on the lake, they have it.  They also have a huge selection of home made German brats.  It’s pretty crazy really.  I’ve heard about this place just because of their meat selection for years so it was crazy when we realized my in-laws moved pretty close to it.

There are several aisles of grocery foods as well as freezers with frozen meat but the fresh food is up front.  It’s set up like a lot of gas stations with a glass case displaying what they  have at the moment.  It’s kept warm under warming lamps and through a steam table.  What’s available changes often but if you really wanted something on the menu that’s not there, I’m sure they would make it for you.

There is a pizza display case right next to the hot food.  They do pizza by the slice and to be honest, I probably should have grabbed one.  It looked pretty good for gas station pizzas.  They also do call in orders to get whole pizzas.

The chicken was the thing that jumped out at me right as I walked in the store.  I didn’t realize it at the time but they have a call ahead special with 30 wings for $15.  I totally would have done that had I seen it.  Instead, I just grabbed a four piece fried chicken and a whole order of mojo’s.  I grabbed two Pepsi’s from the cooler as well which brought my total to a little over $11.

J’s parents is just about a five minute drive away so everything was still hot when I got there.  I popped open the box of Mojo’s first.  They’re essentially potato wedges.  They had a nice crispy, seasoned exterior but the inside was very soft and potato-y.  Some of them even tasted a little under done.  The smaller ones were much better than some of the bigger slices.  I would have greedily eaten a whole box of the smaller cut wedges but the bigger ones just don’t do it for me.

The chicken was pretty dang good.  I started in with the wing which just fell of the bone when I went to open it up.  The breading was super crispy while the meat underneath was tender and juicy.  All four pieces were just oozing juiciness but the crispy breading held it all inside.  This is the kind of chicken I really enjoy.  The breading is loose enough that I get the idea that it’s hand breaded before going in the fryer but it sticks just enough to hold all that flavor inside.


The Sand Lake Party Store is a place I’m going to be seeing a lot this summer.  I mean, I haven’t even talked about the ice cream yet!  They have a small ice cream parlor in back that serves up huge scoops of Hudsonville Ice Cream.  The kids haven’t figured that out yet but I’m sure it will become obvious very soon.


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