28 Feb 2017

The Coast to Coast In Store Comic Convention is this Saturday! We will be live streaming the event at both stores when we open. The show is based at the Emerald City Comicon this year and will feature exclusive interviews with tons of comic professionals and panels. As many of our customers will be in Seattle this weekend for the show, we wont have a big sale like previous years but we will be running specials at the mall and at the Division store, we will be doing 20% off NEW Graphic Novels and 30% off all USED Graphic Novels of which we got a ton of new ones in in the past couple of months.

Here is the list of times for the interviews and panels for Saturday:

We have been putting out lots of new back issues in the past couple of weeks. Somewhere around a 1,000 this month and we are going to try and keep that pace up for the near future. As we make room for all those new books we are pulling out some older ones that havent sold in years and have been putting them in our discount boxes which have doubled in size in the past month. Tons of great stuff if you have a few minutes to look.

The mall is currently hard at work on our new location! One of the stores they are prepping for us is nearly finished and work on the second one will start in two days and they will connect the two together! I think they may actually get it ready by the March 15 date they initially promised me!

If they can hand me the keys by the 15th, we should be able to hopefully get open by the 1st of April. We will have two weeks to put up the slotwall we need, move the backroom from the old location, mount the tv’s to the walls, get our sign moved and try and figure out how to use the space prior to actually moving all the merchandise in. Nothing to it.

Both locations also received a massive reorder of POP figures. Something like 1,000 new and reordered figures!
-Craig!

15 Feb 2017

We finally received news on the new Northtown Mall location! The definitely, positively, absolutely, possible move date is in April!

Right now the mall is waiting on approval of their renovation plans by the city for the permits so they can start work. One of the two stores we are taking over is already empty so they are going to start there first and the other is supposed to be vacant by the end of this month and they they can start connecting them together.

The mall thinks they can deliver us the spot by 1 March which is much faster than I think they will be able to do it but we will see since they are quite motivated and have to start tearing down our current location in the middle of April for H&M to move into.

The current plan is to not be closed for more than a single day as we should be able to get the necessities into the new spot and be operational after setting up the front counter and getting the computers all online and the registers working which should be able to be done overnight on the last day we are open in the old location.

We are hoping to start moving the back room from the old store to the new one this week if we can get permission to lock it up while they tear the rest down which will make everything go even smoother. Is it possible it might be a painless move? Its been 28 years, we are due.

7 Feb 2017

The free comics for Free Comic Book Day have been ordered! The first Saturday in May which is already coming up fast. Just think, its almost spring and we got 6 inches of snow a couple of days ago…

The Instore Comic Convention is coming up rather quick again! Saturday March 4th broadcasting live from Emerald City Comic Con! The format will be the same as last year with live panels and interviews all day. In store we will have at least one tv at the Mall location playing the event and the large tv at Division running it as well.

The mall store will have select items on sale and Division will be having a sale as well with details coming up in a couple of weeks.

http://coasttocoastcomiccon.com/

When we came to work Monday morning Steven discovered a crack in the ceiling beam which runs from the front to the back of the shop. If you have shopped with us for the past ten years or so, you will understand why that disturbs us a bit more than you think it might. Our last location had a roof that nearly collapsed and the building owner put up a steel ibeam and two building jacks in the middle of the shop for nearly six months while they tried to repair the damage.

The new crack has gotten progressively worse each day and the current building manager says not to worry about it as its not a structural support beam. Possibly. On the plus side, there are only 3 more winters on this lease and hopefully we wont get any of that really heavy snow to test out his prognosis….

The Northtown Mall main office in Chicago called today and told me that they would like to have us open in our new location sometime in April. Its kinda hard to work around a date “like sometime in April” but we will do our best.

Basically we get 30 days from when they finish the build out of our new spot to move everything, get it all set up and open the doors for business. As we have gotten progressively larger with each move, we have acquired much more inventory in each location which makes the store a bit less mobile and we really can’t afford to shut down for a week while we do it. Somehow, once we get the green light, we have to magically close the doors of one spot and open in the new one in no more than two days. One if possible. The one thing we have going for us is that we can load out through our back door and run carts directly to the shiny new shop and I have all those bookcases that I bought from Hastings just waiting for an opportunity to be used.

One thing that we have never done before is do a store without a massive quantity of slotwall which I have to cut, mount and paint which is quite time consuming. This time, we are going to use mostly fixtures which we can just break down and set up, saving us several days and lots of frustration. We will see how that works. I have a feeling we will be open prior to actually being completely ready though.

Another good thing with the new location is that we should be able to put cameras all over the place – that store gets hit so hard with shoplifting that its insane. If they dont catch several people a day you know the store isnt being watched well enough. I think the only place in the mall that is hit more is the candy store….

The excitement for the week, the coin store across the street may or may not have caught fire this week! We heard the alarm going off and watched as two people became more and more frantic and tried to guess what they were doing. We couldn’t figure out if they were trying to break in, looking for a place to pee or were getting frustrated that the pot store in the same parking lot was not open yet.

As we watched, one of them threw a snowball at one of the windows. We are still not quite sure why they did that but within 10 minutes a firetruck showed up. Then another and another and another and a response vehicle. Out came the firehoses and axes and a chainsaw! As all the windows are barred they seemed to have a big problem getting in and tried to chainsaw the window frame which failed.

I think they must have had some luck in getting in the front door as we eventually saw some people inside. Not many as there is only about 50sf that you can move around in there -maybe two firefighters and a hose pumping out 4,000 gallons of water per minute? At any rate the 30 firemen who were eventually on the scene watched the progress of the two guys who could make it into the building and took turns walking around the building and looking in the windows that they had smashed out when they first showed up.

Then, as quickly as they showed up, they vanished. All of them. I am assuming the owner of the building or business finally showed up as someone started drilling in sheets of plywood to cover the window holes. I checked the news that night and I never did see anything mentioning the incident although there was a camera crew there during part of the event. Wow, pretty lame story with no appreciable ending…..