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Hunting for Nostalgia at Emporium Stores

Toy Stores come in all shapes and sizes, from small boutiques to giant stores rivaling Toys ‘R Us of old.
Different Toy Stores can offer far different experiences.
Some stores have a museum type feel and some others offer that certain atmosphere of welcoming nostalgia.

Emporium style stores offer their own unique style. These multi-vendor spaces are usually very large and offer some of the widest ranges when it comes to products and prices. Commonly known as antique malls, very rarely are these stores solely dedicated to toys. Often they can be wonderful places full of all manner of collectibles. For the latest episode of Hunting Nostalgia we joined host Nick Bartley in the wild as he tried not to get lost inside one of these treasure troves.

Watch Hunting Nostalgia Season 5 Episode 5

“Emporiums are similar to a flea market, different vendors, ever changing inventory and great prices! The difference is emporiums are more often than not open more than one day a week, sometimes even 7 days a week.” 

 – Nick Bartley

In this episode of Hunting Nostalgia, host Nick Bartley travels to Unlimited Treasures 2 in Bellefonte, Pennsylvania. Located in the middle of Pennsylvania, Unlimited Treasures 2 has over 3,200 square feet of space, over 20 vendors, with all manner of items from uranium green glass to vintage G.I. Joes. 

In stark contrast to Nick in central PA, Elvira Taylor beams in from south California. She visited Frank & Son Collectible Show located in City of Industry, right outside of Los Angeles. This space, which used to be the home to Sam’s Club, has over 65,000 square feet and 350 vendors.

Some of us from Toy Store Guide have had the privilege to visit both Unlimited Treasures 2 and Frank & Son Collectible Show.

Unlimited Treasures 2 has all sorts of items, but the majority of the store is toys. They have multiple rooms with large selections of newer figures, figures from the 80’s and 90’s, vintage toys and plushes, and board games. Multiple vendors including Cosmic Toys and Collectibles carry vintage G.I. Joe figures and vertices including having a USS Flagg on display. I have been there twice since we launched our website and both times left with a trunk full of toys at great prices. This is the type of place that is a toy hunter’s dream, a place where you can find a hidden gem in every room.

On our last trip to L.A. we made it a point to stop into Frank & Son Collectible Show. We’ve heard of Frank & Son but were a bit confused by the “Collectible Show” part of the name. Officially it is a collectible show, open 3 days a week, walking in has the feel of going to a large toy show. The lighting, the displays, and sheer size has the look of walking into comic con. Aisles one after another full of toys, with a room that looks like a jewelry store with PokeMon cards where the diamonds would be. Adding to the experience are museum style displays full of the owner’s personal collection and vintage McDonald’s memorabilia. All of this is located in close proximity to Disneyland, promises to be welcoming and family friendly, and it’s free to get in.

Between Unlimited Treasures 2 in Pennsylvania and Frank & Son Collectible Show in California this episode of Hunting Nostalgia highlights some great multi-vendor emporium style toy stores from coast to coast.

Be sure to subscribe to the Hunting Nostalgia YouTube Channel. We would love to get them over the 1000 subscriber mark sooner than later. If you have Armstong as your cable television provider then keep a lookout for this episode airing regularly on the Armstrong Neighborhood Channel.

Follow Nick Bartley, and Elvira Taylor on Instagram

We can promise that Nick and the Hunting Nostalgia crew will visit even more local independent toy stores in the near future. So stay tuned to learn more about amazing toy stores that you can visit. While you wait, use to find a toy store near you!

Written By: Dave at ToyStoreGuide (ToyDeLorean on Instagram)

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