Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 16, 2014

Toy store re-opens in downtown Kokomo

Collectibles shop now four times larger

By Scott Smith Kokomo Tribune
Kokomo Tribune

---- — How into G.I. Joe collectibles is Todd Jordan? Let’s put it this way: he has connections in China sending him prototypes of action figures, some of which were never produced.

That’s why a serious collector like Terence Muncy, up with two friends from Indianapolis Thursday, will make the trip to Todd and Amber Jordan’s shop every year.

“It’s the only store that has this much stuff,” said Muncy, an Indy artist with a special affinity for He-Man and Masters of the Universe collectibles. You know, He-Man, the guy with tons of muscles and the Prince Valiant haircut.

“I’ve got everything over there except the castle,” Muncy said, pointing to the special He-Man display at Kokomo Toys & Collectibles’ new location, 111 E. Sycamore St.

The castle he was pointing at, He-Man’s home, Castle Grayskull, features a barbican shaped like the mouth of a skull, and also carries a $350 price tag.

“I’ve got the old one, I don’t need the new one,” Muncy said, with a trace of wistfulness.

The new shop, with four times the floor space of their old shop on North Morgan Street, opened Feb. 7 for the downtown First Friday event.

It’s a testament to the young couple’s business savvy. They’ve managed to tap in to a market for a thriving subculture most people have no idea exists.

For somebody like Muncy, who puts on events for Indianapolis’ late night horror flick host Sammy Terry, the toys Jordan sells both influence and express an artistic temperament. For others, the toys are something to share with their kids or a connection to good childhood memories.

The new downtown location, on the same block as Comics Cubed and Goblin Games, is also close to the Sycamore Cottage collectibles store. Downtown Kokomo’s retail variety is growing month to month.

“We brought some stuff down from the attic,” Todd joked. “I still have about 20 totes of Ninja Turtles stuff we need to find a place for.”

At the old location, the Jordans had to shuttle back and forth between their house and the toy store next door, depending on whether it was a day to open the shop or a day to sit at home fulfilling eBay orders.

Now they have the room to do both, and they’re keeping the store open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

The biggest challenge in moving to the new store might have been getting everything from the north side to downtown in one piece.

They closed their old store about a month ago to make the move and received a façade improvement grant from the city of Kokomo, along with grant assistance from Howard County government.

They had help from family and friends, but the weather, well … the weather was a bit tough.

“We had tornadoes and snowstorms; we felt like a hurricane was coming,” Amber said. “We were waiting for a sharknado.”

Now, the only thing they have left to do is to move their household. Eventually, they want to sell their house on East Morgan Street and move into the space above the store.

Scott Smith is on Twitter @JasonSSmith1, and can be emailed at scott.smith@kokomotribune.com