If you’re a little taken aback by the sheer consumer frenzy that is Christmas shopping, just think about all the “impossible” or “too expensive” things that you could do with that money — a total of about $45 billion this year — instead.
I’m not a shopper by any stretch of the imagination. I can’t remember the last time I went shopping for something that was necessary for my immediate consumption. Now, however, for the first time in memory, I’m putting together a shopping list.
My vague plans to attend a trade show in New York in June 2010 became a little firmer as a stumbled across the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Co., a real store that sells real superhero supplies. Really! I’ve always wanted to visit a store that sells capes and grappling hooks and antimatter!
A little more research shows that this super-awesome fun store is actually a front for 826NYC, a nonprofit creative writing and tutoring center for youth. (See HERE for more info about the store and the program).
The 826 program has a national scope. As well, many of the centers have a different themed store to both raise funds and raise awareness:
To raise funds, inspire creativity, and advertise our programs to the local community, most of our centers include a street-front retail store filled with unusual products, entertaining signage, and, of course, our books for sale. San Francisco’s pirate supply store sells glass eyes and one-of-a-kind peglegs, 826NYC’s Superhero Supply Company offers custom-fit capes, Seattle’s Greenwood Space Travel Supply Company sells “rare imports from other planets,” 826 Michigan’s Monsters Union Local specializes in bottling screams, 826LA features a time travel store, there’s a secret agent supply store in Chicago, and a Cryptozoology shop in Boston is in the works! (From the 826 National site)
As the blurb from 826 mentions, there are a number of stores, including: