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Question For The Those That Grew Up In The 80's


Lady Jaye
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It really kind of makes me sad that my kids will never have that joy of standing in awe of all the toys, and spending hours just looking around at all the different lines.

True'r words were never said my friend, true'r words!!!

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we had a ben franklin store in our area that had the best toy section. thats where i got most of my joes at. one year for my birthday i was there picking out my birthday present (the gi joe headquaters) and my aunt happened by and asked what i was up to. i told her i was picking out my birthday present and she asked if i wanted one more. she ended up getting me the stinger jeep. what a great birthday that was.

 

i also remember one year we went on vacation to arkansas and i had never heard of walmart before. we went there and i had never seen so many gi joes and all for about $1.50 less than anywhere back home. i came home with mutt & junkyard, spirit and ripcord.

 

oh the memories...it almost brings a tear to my eye.

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What I remember most was that EVERYWHERE had huge amounts of GI Joes and Transformers. And the waves were HUGE and lasted two years.

 

Man, what happened? Is it all because of Walmart???

I don't think there is just one explanation. I mean back then toys would last two years like you said, but now they don't. They do in a way, the mold is the same, but they change to colors!!!! Why I don't know, I know kids these days don't have the gotta collect them all mentality that the 80's were famous for!!! I mean we all got those catalogs that came with the toys and looked at them till they fell apart. But those toys were guranteed to be there for a full two years.

 

I guess it's the society we live in, to fast and quick. Always looking for the next big thing??? Kids don't have the attention span we had. So companies look for ways to compensate.

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I don't think there is just one explanation. I mean back then toys would last two years like you said, but now they don't. They do in a way, the mold is the same, but they change to colors!!!! Why I don't know, I know kids these days don't have the gotta collect them all mentality that the 80's were famous for!!! I mean we all got those catalogs that came with the toys and looked at them till they fell apart. But those toys were guranteed to be there for a full two years.

 

I guess it's the society we live in, to fast and quick. Always looking for the next big thing??? Kids don't have the attention span we had. So companies look for ways to compensate.

 

I don't think that's it... I think GI Joe and Transformers, along with He-Man and a few other lines, were really able to capture kids' imaginations back then. You could lose yourself in the whole environment of it all - toys, TV, comics, movies... and it went on and on. There hasn't really been a big media avalanch behind either GI Joe or TF, ESPECIALLY GI Joe... but even with the Transformers series it's been pretty half-assed.

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Places that are still around:

 

Toys R Us

Kay Bee

Sears

Wal-Mart

Target

 

Places no longer around:

 

Children's Palace

Circus Toys

 

Places no longer in my area, but might be elsewhere:

 

Kmart

Eckerd Drugs (They are all CVS now)

Montgomery Ward

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Like most, most, a majority were obtained at Sears and TRU. I also got a few from Target, K-Mart, KBs and Children's Palace. A few off the wall places were Kohls, Lazarus, LS Ayres, JC Penny's, Ames (got my first Snow Serpent from there in Keene, NH) and Zayres (got my first Dragonfly and WHALE from here). Now a days, Kohls has a token toy dept and Lazarus doesn't sell toys at all anymore.

 

Great thread.....brings back memories!

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hmm i get to say different stores :D

 

aside from WM, TRU, KM, Sears, KB, and K&K Toys, there were a couple of other dept. stores in my town that aren't around any more named Brendle's & Roses (roses was at least in other cities like charleston, sc....not so sure about brendle's)

 

Also, got joes at a grocery store called winn dixie. western auto had them sometimes, and a little kind of country store called Humphrey's Bargain Center (VERY small, mainly sold hunting & fishing gear...but had a good toy section lol). oh yeah and Ace Hardware too.

 

edit: oh yeah and eckerd's & revco (i think that is the old name of it lol) pharmacies...but down here eckerd's & CVS are different stores still. never had walgreen's growing up only heard about that store watching chia pet commercials lol.

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Ahh I've heard some familiar old names. Revco Drugs. I haven't heard of that since the 80's when they closed down. I remember getting the Snow Cat there!!!! I could get it on my own because it was in walking distance in Hancock Center.

 

Funny thing is that there is where I got into Baseball Cards. So I think it was in 91 that they shut down, cuase I still remember getting Fleer 91, with the yellow border there.

 

Anyway, it was a bit more than say Target, it was worth it since I could go by myself, or with friends.

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I got all of my joes from either Kings(got straight arm SE there, was my first joe) Zayre's, Ames, K-mart, Sears, Toys for Joy(got the Dreadnoks there a few months before the rest of the 84-85 figs hit in force), Montgomery Wards, Woolworth, Ben Franklin, Child World, and Toys R Us(I remember the day I walked into the Albany NY TRU, and there was a fresh case of series 4 joes. I got the SE with timber that day, and was probably the happiest kid on the planet!). I really miss Zayre's, if i won the lottery, i would try to start it up again, to kick Walmarts @$$!!!!!!

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Wow..what a memory triggering question....Reading a lot of these post remind me when I was lucky to really enjoy my toys...

 

The stores:

TRU - of course...I remember those wonderful cards staring at me, awesome renderings on the card...and when you would find the sweetest figure...I my case Snake Eyes (85')...not to mention Storm Shadow (84')...Firefly, Crimson Guard, Viper and FLint were my fondest memory of finding them...

 

Sears, JcPenny, Mervyn's...were great as well...

 

Woolworth....Gemco (gosh, I forgot about that store) if memory serces correctly the pre-Walmart of its time.

 

Montgomery Wards...Zodys'...and Kmart....

 

And another memory was getting Xamot/Tomax at Best....There wasnt a BEST in Las Vegas, and me and my mom went to El Paso to visit family and my mom bought me those figs...I still remember the excitement of those two...I love that box with the foil that acted like a mirror...

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I'm new to the area, but do you know if the TRU there in Albany is the same one you used to go to???

 

I remember the day I got Snake Eyes!!! Well it was in the summer and I was just chillin at the house. I remember it was a Thursday b/c my mom got off early that day. Well we went out to the store, since she got paid that day. We go to Target and I immediatlly leave her behind and go to the toy section. I don't know, but I was in store for a great day. Not only did I find Snake Eyes, but I also found Storm Shadow!!!!! Ohh it was the greatest find in my young life. But hold the bolt, for some reason I also got Flint and another figure I don't remember. Why I grabbed them is beyond me, but I did and I thought my mom would make me out two back, she didn't. I got four action figures in one trip, man was I bragging about that score for weeks.!!!

 

One thing that I regret to this day, is that they had an extra of Snake Eyes that I was going to get, but decided not to!!! I could have had a MOC Snake Eyes all these years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1 Talk about Doh!!!!!!!!

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Wow..what a memory triggering question....Reading a lot of these post remind me when I was lucky to really enjoy my toys...

That's why I asked it. It's one I've asked before and have always gotten great responses!!!!! There is just something about talking about your figures. Bu tnot just that you had them, but about when you actually got them, and what it felt like. Sometimes that memory can be greater than just having them, but you forget!!! Like all these stories about finding their one awesome figure, just brings back wave of memories, like the stores that are no more, or the toy depts, that were in every dept store, lil details that made growing up in the 80's the greatest!!!!!!!

 

I'm glad I can help bring back those memories for you guys!!!!!

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The first place I remember seeing Joe's was Standard Distributors (long gone), this was near the end of the 1st asst w/out 'swivel arms. I bought my first Joe vehicle from the clearance aisle at Service Merchandise (went bankrupt a few years ago). I know I got alot of SW stuff at K-Mart(only one or two left) and Zayre (also long gone), so, I must' ve gotten a lot of Joe's there also. Circus World (gone) was a regular stop at the mall and I picked up a few figures there. I remember seeing Secret Wars(mid/late '80's) toys at Childerens Palace(gone)/TRU (one of two left), but, I can't remember what/if I was collecting at the time.

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Lets see a long lost but not forgotten place Childrens Palace was the best down here in AL! I also bought from TRU, K Mart, and KB. Walmart didn't become big till after my Joe days. But I remember when K mart was the bomb back in 85 with 30 pegs of nothing but Joes from the Baroness, Flint to Storm Shadow. I can remember the day my mother bought me a BBQ and Flint.

Draven

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I grew up in upstate NY(near Utica) before I moved to Alabama as an adult. I remeber getting most of my Joes at Bradlees. Always managed to find what I was looking for there. I went back to the mall where it use to be about two years ago when I visited family up that way,and found out they went and turned it into a Target.

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You know what I wish I would have done, was taken pics of me in the store. Imagine having all those memories at your finger tips to share with all of you guys!!!! Oh man missed opportunities!!!!

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I also used to get a ton of my Joe's from Clark's Drugs, which Sav-On bought in the early '90's. Might be a California only drugstore. I got everyone from Straight Arm Breaker to Firefly to Dr. Mindbender there.

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I bought most of my Joes at Gemco, TRU, Montgomery Wards, Zody's and Lionels play world. Heh, kinda sad only 2 of them are still around. I think i'll miss Lionels till the end. That wall of toys was so cool when I was 10.

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of course almost all of mine came from MEIJERS!!!!!!!!

 

 

I PRACTICALLY GREW UP IN THAT STORE!!!

 

also kmart, TRU and CHLDRENS PALACE

 

 

 

My oldest sister bought a lot of play sets and vechiles-----UNTIL SHE HAD HER OWN KIDS OF COURSE!!!!!

 

 

GREAT THREAD----

 

 

 

DOC

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The first place I remember seeing Joe's was Standard Distributors (long gone), this was near the end of the 1st asst w/out 'swivel arms. I bought my first Joe vehicle from the clearance aisle at Service Merchandise (went bankrupt a few years ago). I know I got alot of SW stuff at K-Mart(only one or two left) and Zayre (also long gone), so, I must' ve gotten a lot of Joe's there also. Circus World (gone) was a regular stop at the mall and I picked up a few figures there. I remember seeing Secret Wars(mid/late '80's) toys at Childerens Palace(gone)/TRU (one of two left), but, I can't remember what/if I was collecting at the time.

Yep I remember those stores too. Man the good ole days of Birmingham!

Draven

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we had a ben franklin store in our area that had the best toy section.

Did your Ben Franlins have a fish tank in the toy isle? Mine did. I used to torture those poor fish. I'd come out with my sleeves all wet and make my mom mad.

no. thats really funny! our ben franklin was kinda small, but almost half the store was toys and the other half was craft stuff. there's still one not too far from me, but its nothing but craft supplies now.

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what a killer thread. ive had so much fun reading all of your old memories and it brought so many great memories flooding back. my first joe (flash), stealing cobra commander from the store (i know, i know...i was pretty dumb back then) and the neighbor kid who had about 3 times as much joe stuff as me (man i hated him).

so thanks, lady jaye, for this awesome thread! :D

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