I’m not quite sure I can describe how excited I was when I received my daily ThinkGeek email yesterday and it mentioned that it was opening day of their first ever retail store…in Orlando.
Because as it happens, I was visiting friends in Orlando this weekend, and first things first we carved out some time to head over to the Florida Mall to check it out. On opening day.
Seriously, talk about perfect timing.
Honestly a good portion of my home decor was purchased via ThinkGeek (namely my Star Wars rugs; yes, rugS), and while the store certainly doesn’t have everything you can find on the website, the option to see things in person (and not pay shipping) is a huge plus.
That said, there were plenty of things on the shelves that I didn’t know you could buy via ThinkGeek, including some leftover convention exclusives and items that I simply wouldn’t have thought to look for, like specific Pop! figures.
There were also display cases throughout the store that held everything from an Empire Strikes Back probe droid to an Unsullied helmet from Game of Thrones. And yeah, you could buy them all…for hefty prices, of course. (No complaints here; they were all clearly well worth their price tags, just out of my range of affordability.)
That said, I also got to try out an Assassin’s Creed glove and an inexpensive replica of the arm piece Merle wore in The Walking Dead, so overall I call that a win.
Probably the best thing about going to the store was seeing the new Star Wars BB-8 [mini] droid in action. We left the store with some awesome free swag, too (two comics – variant covers and all – and special opening weekend pins) but the best thing that came home with us was our very own BB-8. Because that thing is awesome. And honestly I’m not sure I would have ordered it online, sight unseen – going to the store and seeing it in person was what really tipped the scale.
The ThinkGeek store space is fairly small, but they’ve crammed a lot of awesome stuff into it. And again, I believe that seeing some of these items in person is a huge plus when it comes down to deciding whether or not to purchase them. Would I make a special trip to Orlando just to visit the store? Nah. But will I be revisiting it every chance I get? You bet.
And I have to admit that it was really awesome to have the [somewhat random] chance to check it out on opening weekend.
Author: Tara Lynne
Tara Lynne is an author, fandom and geek culture expert, and public speaker. She founded Ice & Fire Con, the first ever Game of Thrones convention in the US, and now runs its parent company Saga Event Planning.
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