Shopping Guide Updates

I’ve finished revising the Atlanta Fandom Shopping Guide.

Some noteworthy additions and updates:

Bookstand of NE GA
Spidee’s Comics & Toys
Discover Mills Mall
Hobbytown USA
The Junkman’s Daughter
The Junkman’s Daughter’s Brother
The Raven’s Nest
Rerun Videos

Also wanted to mention that both the N2 Movies and Games stores in Lawrenceville and Social Circle have closed in 2010 (although I don’t know when). I inquired about the Lawrenceville store in May 2010 at the PC/Mac tech store next door and they said they just came in one morning and noticed N2 was empty — like it happened overnight. And I went by the Social Circle store a week later and found it also empty with a “FOR LEASE” sign on the door.

The owner of N2 is an entrepreneur and an avid gamer. If he can find a way to reopen and remain profitable against MovieStop and GameStop, it’s likely he’ll give it another try in the future.

And I finally got around to visiting the House of Anime store in Duluth only to learn that it has become an online-only store. Their physical location is a warehouse storage facility which is not open to the general public.

I’ve also removed the listing for the Santa Fe Mall (formerly Venture Mall) in Duluth, GA. There used to be a sports/comics/collectibles/gaming store in this mall that sometimes had some great deals. However, the store closed sometime during 2009. (If they’ve moved and anyone knows their current location, please post feedback below.)

This mall was completely overhauled and redesigned with Gwinnett’s Latino population in mind as the key demographic. And it’s in an ideal location considering the sizable Hispanic population in Gwinnett. However, it’s doubtful that there are any stores still in this mall that would appeal to the fandom in Atlanta. There is one store selling videogames, videogame accessories, movies and related merch. Unfortunately, they were also selling so many bootleg products that I will not support them by listing them here.

The Venture Cinema is still located at the Santa Fe Mall. I used to watch movies here regularly when I lived in Lilburn due to it being a discount movie theater. However, the place is really run down and dirty, and probably unsafe after dark in the parking lot on weekends.

If you live in Gwinnett County and still want to visit a value/discount movie theater, I recommend the GTC – Gwinnett Town Center Value 10 Cinema in Lawrenceville, GA (next to the Kroger shopping center). It’s located in a marginally better part of town and at least the parking lot has brighter lighting.

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Store Closings: Play N Trade – Dacula and Buford, GA

The Play N Trade video game store in Dacula, GA (next to Stars & Strikes) has unfortunately closed without notice. I visited this location on 5.24.2010 and found the store locked with all the product still inside. A brief note posted on the door stated that due to the poor economy the store had to close abruptly, and thanks all their regulars for their business.

On a related note, the Buford Play N Trade store near the Mall of Georgia appears to have closed recently as well.

I must say it’s very disappointing to see these two stores closing almost in the same month, and not just because I was a regular at both stores. It means that the retail industry in Atlanta is continuing to decline and that Play N Trade stores are unable to remain profitable and competitive with the monster corporate juggernaut of GameStop.

Play N Trade’s stores are very gamer-friendly and the staff have always proven helpful for me, and they are among very few retailers outside of independents who still buy/sell/trade vintage games, consoles and accessories.

There are still 8 7 6 5 Play N Trade locations open in the Atlanta area, and I encourage all Atlanta-area gamers to support them:

Athens – closed late 2011
Atlanta
Snellville – closed Summer 2011
Canton
Gainesville
Peachtree Corners – closed in 2010
Tucker
Woodstock

Visit PlayNTrade.com to find the location nearest you.

For you nostalgic types and former regulars at the Atlanta-area PNT stores that closed, I found some videos/TV commercials from those stores:

– Athens, GA

– Buford, GA

– Peachtree Corners, GA