Monday, November 2, 2009

Big Fun at...Big Fun!

A couple Sundays ago we very literally stumbled across an amazing toy store appropriately named "Big Fun."

At this location (we would soon learn there is more than one) you are greeted by a silver robot that plays James Brown hits nonstop! And while that is undeniably cool, it can't begin to rival the sensation of walking into Big Fun for the first time and experiencing sensory overload unlike anything since the G-FEST Dealer's Room. Big Fun specializes in vintage toys--and by "vintage" I mean Kenner Star Wars, original Transformers, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe-era toys. I mean Fraggle Rock and E.T. plush. It is a time machine of epic proportions. Elvis and the Beatles memorabilia blends with Michael Jackson and Wham! paraphernalia. Old library card catalogs house countless plastic trinkets, erasers, pencil toppers, and the like. The Wizard of Oz, Popeye, Marvel and D.C. comic heroes--all are represented in one form or another.

While visiting the store pictured here (near Lakewood, Ohio) we learned there was another Big Fun--the original Big Fun--in Cleveland Heights, so we visited there recently too. Of course, it was not quite the same "wow" factor upon entering, but their selection was even better!

What I mean is that the original Big Fun had far more in the way of Japanese superheroes and robots. There were Shogun Warriors, Kamen Rider, and Macross toys all carefully stored in glass cases. But my son really hit the jackpot when he spotted five loose Super Deformed Ultraman figures that became ours for an insanely reasonable price. You see them pictured here, along with the only Godzilla figures to be found--a series of Imperial-like monsters in variable hues. Inexpensive to begin with, the nice guys at Big Fun knocked a dollar apiece off our big G's. Maybe our enthusiasm will lead to more Godzilla merch in the future!

If you're ever in the Cleveland area, you owe it to yourself to experience Big Fun's nostalgic head rush. It is one of the hidden gems of the North Coast--we've been here for eleven years and had no idea it existed! Now that we know, it is destined to become an old haunt. Let us know if we can go and look for something for you--that would give us a reason to go back sooner than later!

For more info about Big Fun, including store locations and hours, visit

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