Rising from the Ashes: Evansville Man Inspired to Open New Store after Arson
I recently set off our fire alarm while I was cooking. The smoke detector was being a bit dramatic if you ask me. There was no fire, maybe a little too much smoke, but now I know what it sounds like and that it works.
Just the thought of a fire is terrifying. Aside from the obvious, I would want to scoop up all of our collectibles, too. Even though it's just stuff, every piece of our movie prop/toy collection is special. Unfortunately, Daniel Barritt knows what this is like because his collection and business burned to the ground last month.
Daniel has been in the collectible toy and video game business for 20 years. His booth at the Diamond Flea Market had thousands of toys, video games, comics, Pokémon cards, movies, and more available. G.I. Joe, WWE, Transformers, Ninja Turtles, Power Rangers, Star Wars, and so much more. He tells me that the May 14, 2021, fire destroyed close to $200,000 of his inventory. I caught up with Daniel to find out about his new store that he plans to open next month.
Picking up the Pieces
How do you begin to start over after such a loss?
"I really did not know if I wanted to start over again. However, there was a huge amount of support from so many people saying they wanted to see me open another place again. A lot of people reached out and told me how much the old place meant to them and their families. I know it all meant a lot to me and my family."
You could've started an online business, but I suppose you would miss the comradery of the collectors here in the Tri-State.
"I thought about another flea market but I felt like if I could try a store it might be better. It would allow us to be open more and have a chance to reach more people. So I discussed it with my wife and decided to try and open a store. A lot of praying that I would make the right choice. Not only for me and my family but for the community. I want to be able to help bring smiles to people's faces young and old. I still have to make money but I want to be helping people as well."
Evansville Toys & Games
You've been working really hard to get your new store up and running. Are you currently buying items?
"The first 28 feet of the store stocked today with Star Wars. I still need to buy a lot of product. New and used Wrestling, TMNT, Marvel Legends, DC, Transformers, Dragonball Z, Star Wars from 2005-2012, Vintage Star Wars, Star Wars Black Series, Video Games, Comic Books, and much more modern and vintage items. I’m usually at the new shop (3810 E. Morgan Ave) off and on working all day. So I can meet there or go to you to buy the items. Thanks again for all the love and support."
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