I’ve been a long time customer of The Tower Game Center in Suwannee.  Andrew and his crew did a great job of creating a solid gaming community, and they always seemed to have what I wanted in stock – whether it was models I’d never find time to paint, board games, or the latest block of Magic Cards.  It was an all around great store.
In October of 2014, they announced they were closing, and for good reason.  Andrew and his wife were having their first baby, and he wanted to devote himself to that.  He told me having a game store was like having a child, and now that they were having an actual child, it was time to focus on that.
With my wife’s encouragement, we decided to talk to Andrew about buying the store.  I have always wanted to own one, as sort of a Not-Quite-Retirement sort of thing to do.  Also, with all the interesting things happening in the retail world, I thought it would be a fun thing to learn and, with an established community and storefront, we figured we’d have a fighting chance to make it successful.
Incidentally, about three years ago, another store went out of business (Phoenix Games), and I bought a small chunk of their inventory.  Things like demo terrain boards, terrain, some display cases, painted armies. . .Not much in terms of sealed items, but things that you can’t just “get” easily from a retail supplier – hand painted hobby items or custom-designed game boards.
Anyway. . .
We met with Andrew at the end of October, and proceeded down that path of buying the store.  He had another buying already in discussions, however, and ultimately, his inventory and fixtures were to be sold off, and the store would close down in January.  We were notified on November 12th that we were no longer in the running.
And thus we were very sad, but the bug for trying to open a store was still very much alive.
A few days later (again, at my wife’s encouragement), I drove by a newly built retail space less than a mile from our home, and decided to call the number listed there.  After a chat, we decided to meet at look over the space.  It has yet to be built out, but it’s huge, affordable, and has a lot of potential.  The other residence of the space are non-competing, somewhat complimentary businesses, and the Land Lord seems very interested in finding the right business for the space, and help them be successful.
We agreed to draw up a built-out for the space, and see where that takes us.
And that gets us up to this morning.