Business Beat, By Aaron Orlando
Legends-N-Heroes doubles floor space
It’s a good thing a toy store can bring you back to a warm, nostalgic place, because the giant Toronto Maple Leafs logo on the entrance window of the new Legends-N-Heroes location might get Canucks or Flames fans worked up.
That’s what owner and Windsor, Ont. native Neil Robichaud was hoping for. The shop recently moved two doors up Mackenzie Avenue, doubling their floor space from about 1,000 to 2,000 square feet.
Robichaud has expanded the selection inside his lines, including lots more new room for toys. A basketball freethrow game and a table hockey game add to the fun ambiance of the shop. Wider aisles make it much easier to navigate with a stroller.
“Lego’s on top again,” Robichaud told me of this year’s Christmas trends. There’s a ton of different box sets; his young son Donald points out the ninja set as a good suggestion.
For girls, the Lalaloopsy dolls are popular this year. Themed on hand-sewn dolls, they come with a tie-in to an online interactive Lalaloopsy Land website. It checked it out; it’s pretty advanced and intense – I think I was dunking my Star Wars Chewbacca figurine in mud puddles at that age.
In addition to expanding his selection within existing lines, he’s focused on expanding his educational lines and arts & crafts supplies – there’s even a microscope that quizzes you.
Wood toys are also popular. His Melissa & Doug line includes wooden cars, trucks, bread, pizzas, sushi and a whole lot more.
Brands carried include Lego, Papo, Hot Wheels, Nerf, Easy Bake, Playskool and many, many more.
About a third of the shop is sports memorabilia-focused. They’ve got lots of hats, jerseys and both children’s and adult clothing. “Even with the lockout, the NHL is doing good,” Robichaud said.
They’ve got the usual sporting wear lines and have added the Old Time Hockey line this year.
Legends-N-Heroes is located next to the Main Street Cafe on Mackenzie Avenue at Third Street.
Beyond Gifts gets new location
PHOTO: Phyllis Makarewicz (left)and Jane MacDonald have relocated Beyond Gifts to their new Second Street West location.
Beyond Gifts recently opened for the Christmas location in the former location of the Pinz skate shop on West Second Avenue.
Owners Jane MacDonald and Phyllis Makarewicz relocated from a short-lived location on Connaught Avenue, and previously were part of the collective known as Filigree Antiques & Unique things at the corner of Second Street and Mackenzie Avenue.
“The response from the community has been great,” MacDonald told me when I caught up with her soon after opening. Their shop on Connaught was an evolution and was doing well so they’d been looking for a higher-traffic location.”We thought it was a good move,” she said.
The shop is full of Christmas gift ideas, including lots of seasonal Christmas items. Their products include cards, jewellery, colourful socks, kitchen wear, teas, soaps, spiritual books, skin care products, coffees, chocolates and a large variety of household design items.
My impression is a mix of traditional gift items mixed with contemporary design ideas tied together with a hint of personal spirituality.
“Diversity is our focus,” said MacDonald. “[We stock] things that people are going to use and not just something on a shelf.” The owners are long-time Revelstoke residents and have focused on bringing new variety to their market.
MacDonald said pricing is also key. They work to “keep it fair and keep it affordable.”
I don’t need to remind you that Christmas is only a few days away; they offer free gift-wrapping and gift certificates.