I remember getting my first Barbie Doll from Slocum’s Toyland.
After receiving good report cards, my brother and I were rewarded with a trip to the tiny top shop on East Broadway. It was amazing the amount of stuff that was jammed into this little shop. Stacks of board games, boxes containing dolls, action heroes, Fisher Price Little People, stood from floor to ceiling. Out of all the clutter and chaos of that teeny shop, I found Malibu Barbie with blond hair and her blue one-piece bathing suit and matching print towel. My brother picked out a Stretch Armstrong.
There was penny candy section, fortune gum, fun dip and wax bottles filled with colored syrup. You could get wiffle ball bats and balls and Frisbees and hula hoops at Slocum’s too. No matter what toy you asked for, Mr. Slocum would disappear behind that magic wall and come back with it.
It was not a shop that you browsed in – you were greeted at the front door by Mr. Slocum seated in a beach chair parked out front. Or if you got passed him, Mrs. Slocum in her smock would ask if you needed help.
This is how I remember Slocum’s Toyland and now that I am a mother myself I wish I could bring my children there to reward them for good report cards.
The best part of this picture is the sign to the right of Mr. Slocum. Big Balls .25 cents.
Photo by Fran Canavan