Past Toy Hunt Places

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by bsutton1, Jul 29, 2014.

  1. NeilJam

    NeilJam Resident Audiophile

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2005
    Posts:
    2,668
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Likes:
    +1,439
    When I was young the best stores for toys in my area were Hills and Harts. Still remember the ads for the former: Hills is where the toys are! They always had the most toys, and not just around XMas. Harts was in the same large space as a Big Bear grocery store and was later absorbed by them. They still had toys, but the selection dwindled pretty fast.

    Also got a lot from Treasure Island (not part of a chain) and Woolworths. The local mall had a toy store called Toyco which later became Circus World. Didn't get to Toys R Us much back then as it was a long drive to the closest store.

    In the 90s the mall had a large Family Toy Warehouse which stayed around until that small chain went out of business. Bought a lot of McFarlane figures like Spawn and all of the Total Chaos series there. And of course there was KB Toys in other malls.
     
  2. jestermon

    jestermon Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 10, 2006
    Posts:
    9,898
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    337
    Likes:
    +1,884
    K-Mart, Kroger, and Kessler's were the only places where I lived until they built a WM a town away where my grandparents lived.

    KB later on when the mall opened one, Dollar Tree too they used to actually carry main line toys.

    Kessler's was neat the toy section was down stairs in a basement area.
     
  3. Cyclonus79

    Cyclonus79 Decepticon General

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2011
    Posts:
    8,285
    Trophy Points:
    287
    Likes:
    +5,028
    Ebay:
    Well , since I had no say on where I was going cause I was only 5-7 at the time , more often then not it was Kmart. For good report cards though ( which were far an few between ) my parents would take me to Toys R Us. I never came out empty handed from that place lol.
     
  4. jpizzow

    jpizzow Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2012
    Posts:
    83
    Trophy Points:
    47
    Likes:
    +2
    Here in central Ohio, it was Hart's, Hills, Family Toy Warehouse, KB Toys, Woolworth's, JC Penney Christmas catalog. I used to get a lot of McFarlane toys at Media Play before they tanked.
     
  5. Macross7

    Macross7 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2006
    Posts:
    12,660
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    362
    Likes:
    +6,166
    KB Toys
    Ames
    Service Merchandise
    Bradlees
    Zayers
    Woolworths
    Montgomery Wards
    Media Play

    Hills & Kiddie City - only a few times
     
  6. FoC Grimlock

    FoC Grimlock Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2013
    Posts:
    2,127
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    167
    Likes:
    +7
    Main places for me were

    K Mart
    KB Toys
    Circus World

    Everyone had toys though. Service Merchandise ruled the GI Joe world with theiir Christmas catalogs though
     
  7. Dean ML

    Dean ML Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2013
    Posts:
    13,812
    Trophy Points:
    277
    Likes:
    +32,013
    Growing up in the '80's on G1 I can remember getting TFs from Toys R Us, KB Toys, K-Mart, and Service Merchandise. I'm sure there were others.
     
  8. Dean ML

    Dean ML Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2013
    Posts:
    13,812
    Trophy Points:
    277
    Likes:
    +32,013
    Holy crap! I remember those Service Merchandise catalogues were like toy porn to my seven year old brain!
     
  9. Timothy.R

    Timothy.R Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2011
    Posts:
    10,268
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Likes:
    +1,407
    kiddie city for me.. i remember when i was a kid, everytime i'd spend the night at my grandparents house, the next day they'd take me to kiddie city because it was less than a mile from their house.

    i remember sitting on the floor in the aisle, putting all of the different toys on the floor and taking FOREVER to make decision on which one i wanted lol. my grandparents were/are fantastic, they never tried to hassle me or hurry me up, i don't think i'd be able to have the patience for that.

    those were the days. too bad they went out of business in like the early 90's i believe.
     
  10. cryotek

    cryotek Criminal Overlord

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2002
    Posts:
    3,446
    News Credits:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Location:
    Chillicothe Ohio
    Likes:
    +2,765
    Ebay:
    Hills, K-Mart, Harts & Sears.
     
  11. Superquad7

    Superquad7 OCP Police Crime Prevention Unit 001 Super Content Contributor

    Joined:
    May 19, 2003
    Posts:
    51,180
    News Credits:
    15
    Trophy Points:
    447
    Likes:
    +5,113
    Twitter:
    Those catalogs were like TFW2005.COM is to me now. Each year I'd look through them quite often. The catalog inserts were very important for the same things.

    As far as stores, I am from a very small rural town. We only had K-mart, Roses, and a store called Fred's. Outside of my town there was Sears, JC Penny, Service Merchandise, and Hills. Service Merchandise was able to carry much more than the other retail stores. Hills I'll always remember for the elaborate set displays for each toyline at Christmas.

    Toys 'R' Us and Children's Palace were nearly next door to each other, with TRU eventually running Children's Palace out of business. Speaking of going out of business, I still remember being sad that Montgomery Ward went out, but I never really got TFs from there much. Woolworth's, on the other hand, had a bit until they went out as well.

    I remember KayBee having the 1989 and 1990 figures, but I was out of TFs by then. Of course that's one thing I'm kicking myself over now, but oh well.
     
  12. TFXProtector

    TFXProtector Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2011
    Posts:
    19,629
    News Credits:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    337
    Likes:
    +21,700
    Well, I moved around a lot when I was a kid, so I've seen national chains and local retailers.

    Here's my list:

    Toys R Us (which was rare)
    Mac's Toy World (a NY/PA chain)
    KB Toys (I miss them, greatly)
    Children's Palace (even rarer than Toys R Us)
    Kmart
    Hills
    Ames (not too bad... sometimes they had some real gems)
    Fisher's Big Wheel

    Now, all that's left is TRU, Target, Walmart and Kmart. =\
     
  13. bazinga66

    bazinga66 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2012
    Posts:
    326
    Trophy Points:
    82
    Likes:
    +3
    TG&Y Long gone but the memories are still there.
     
  14. G1Prowl

    G1Prowl Prick, apparently

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2008
    Posts:
    12,369
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Likes:
    +9,143
    Kaybee was the last port of call because it was considerably more expensive. Hills and Walmart were usually our first stops. Hills' demise was a major hit on our collecting, and since we're probably gonna lose Kmart soon, that's just one more place that won't have retail toys out there for us to scour.
     
  15. rbarron64

    rbarron64 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2012
    Posts:
    957
    News Credits:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    117
    Likes:
    +21
    Kb toys was the best. I remember getting g2 cyber jets for like 2 for $5, and laser op and tank megs for $10. Of course, this was loooooong after g2, probably into beast wars and they were on clearance.
     
  16. engledogg

    engledogg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2002
    Posts:
    2,056
    News Credits:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    312
    Location:
    SW Pennsylvania
    Likes:
    +995
    Here's my list:

    Sears (Wish Book catalog)
    JC Penney (catalog)
    Service Merchandise
    Hills
    Kmart
    Value City
    Fisher's Big Wheel
    Jamesway
    Children's Palace
    Circus World
    Hess's
    J.J. Newberry
    G. C. Murphy

    My family used to go to a lot of different flea markets/garage sales when I was little. I got a ton of stuff from those as well.

    Sigh...I remember the aisles of Transformers that some of these stores used to have. Visually, as a kid, nothing was more impressive than a fully-stocked Hills Transformers aisle.

    Now, a couple half-empty pegs in a disgusting Walmart. Ugh.

    MIKE
    engledogg
     
  17. edgs2099

    edgs2099 Optimistically realistic. Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    Posts:
    10,232
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    342
    Location:
    Tom Bombadil's house
    Likes:
    +6,308
    There was one Toys R' Us (At least I think it was a TRU, my 5 year old brain thought so) on the way to my grandparents that very occasionally we'd stop by. It was an OLD TRU(or toy store), it had front display windows like an old department store. In the summer there were the blue plastic pools with blue Easter grass in them simulating water, a kid mannequin in pool clothes. I remember the Xmas after the 86' movie came out, they had a window display with a bunch of old and new Transformers in a diorama battle. Whomever made up that display could follow directions or loved the movie. On the Autobot side, the 86' movie bots were up front leading the charge, with an "injured" Optimus laying down behind them with other '84 bots filling out the ranks. The Decepticon side was '86 Cons up front, with '84 cons filling out behind them. This is one of my most favorite memories of being 5 that I have. Just seeing that display fed my desire to collect and want to own them all.
     
  18. DumpsterJ

    DumpsterJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2013
    Posts:
    1,048
    Trophy Points:
    142
    Likes:
    +16
    Toy castle ! Also had kb and tru
     
  19. thenatureboywoo

    thenatureboywoo Veteran

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Posts:
    8,250
    News Credits:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    277
    Likes:
    +103
    Childrens Palace was where my parents and siblings took me to get Transformers and He-Man figures. My sister worked at a Gold Circle so she was able to get some toys at discount. I remember her getting me the WWF hard rubber wrestler figures for Christmas. Then there was a lul in the action as I hit adolescence and toys were whatever, although I do remember buying NASCAR 1:64 race cars, mostly from Kmart and a specialty NASCAR shop. Then around '97 I remember getting into wrestling again and collecting Jakks WWE Wrestlers. I drove all over for those. Ames was a good spot, along with Family Toy Warehouse.
     
  20. EightiesKid

    EightiesKid G1 archivist

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2011
    Posts:
    2,697
    News Credits:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    292
    Likes:
    +310
    I didn't get to do a lot of hunting in person since we lived overseas. I do remember Best's, and Toys r Us though. Those places were awesome. Like many of the kids from the 80's, I sure wish I could go back to those stores now and buy up some toys.