There is one house in Collettsville, NC, that is simply beyond different from your usual tourist attraction. It is a cabin covered in coffee mugs, and you are free to leave one of your own and enlarge a collection that started at a flea market.
The legend about an unusual cabin lures thousands of tourists into Caldwell County. The cabin’s owner, a retired artist Avery Sisk recalls adventurers from Iceland and Hawaii who traveled to North Carolina just to admire Ronald Reagan’s cup hanging inside the front door.
The funny thing is that Avery does not even drink coffee. “Just a hobby that got out of hand,” he told The News & Observer with a laugh.
15 years ago, a cozy house at the end of a country road was an unremarkable cabin. The House of Mugs was born when the retired man decided to buy an antique oil lamp.
He went to a Hickory flea market, stumbled upon a garage sale and saw a box of 750 mugs for just $15. A real deal!
Avery and his wife Doris thought their cabin could look a bit more cheerful and decided to hang up the mugs. Over the years Avery and Doris added more, and their simple cabin in the woods turned into the legendary House of Mugs.
Sisk visited nearly every flea market to buy mugs sight-unseen, sometimes more than 1,000 at a time.
“I got used to it,” says Doris. Avery’s wife does enjoy coffee. Black.
The Sisks are happy to show off their home.
Some admirers donate their own cups. The couple, however, warns their visitors in advance — if you want to replenish the collection, you have to bring a nail to hang your mug. There are no free nails left around the cabin.
When asked why he’s doing that, Avery simply says that every man needs a hobby. The one he chose turned out to be a healthy one — after he hanged 25,000 mugs, the man lost 56 pounds of extra weight.
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