Yesterday I finally managed to finish some much-needed updates to our website. The most exciting (and arduous) part was updating our retailer list – the ever-growing list of places you can now pick up a brand-new copy of Anomia. Believe it or not, there are now nearly 650 independent stores and small chains in the U.S., Canada and Australia that carry our little game. Go into any of these stores and with any luck, you’ll see it sitting there on the shelf in its unassuming blue box, humming to itself, waiting for a home. We visit our games regularly whenever we travel. It’s fun watching our tiny little empire spread.
Putting together this list made me think about one of the pleasures of working in the toy industry (which, believe me, is not something I ever expected to be doing in this short life!) It’s a multibillion dollar industry based, essentially, on having fun. And you really see that at the mom-and-pop toy store level, more than anywhere else. Just the names of the stores say so much about the level of silliness that must prevail when one is a purveyor of toys and games. It must have been such a blast to come up with store names for some of these folks. Sure, there are lots of Toy Chests and Geppetto’s Toy Boxes, and those have a sweetness of their own. But some of the stores we work with have to get a special shout-out for having the most original, silly, head-scratching, and/or generally awesome names. Here are my Top Ten, in no particular order:
At Once All Agog (Limerick, ME)
Snickelfritz Toys (Vernon Hills, IL)
Toys on Fire (Nepean, ON)
Snakes and Lattes (Toronto, ON)
Strange Adventures (Halifax, NS)
Brain-a-thon Emporium (E. Hartford, CT)
Bean Head Toys (Sandy Springs, GA)
The Doll Hospital (Berkley, MI)
Anglo Dutch Pools and Toys (Bethesda, MD)
(OK, I admit I included this one because…wha?? But they do offer an explanation on their website.)
Mumbles and Squeaks (Ellicott City, MD)
I gotta admit, these guys rival our other favorite list of brilliant store names: hairdressers in rural Maine. But that’s a topic for another post.
Trust me, these aren't all. See who else is a proud Anomia stockist, and look for the store nearest you. And we'd love to know - what’s the best toy or gift store name you’ve ever come across?