Toy store fills mall vacancy
By Bruce Edwards
STAFF WRITER | July 22,2013
Albert J. Marro / Staff Photo
Chelsea Felion, left, and Jeremy Griffin are in the process of opening a new toy store in Diamond Run Mall called the Toy Factory.
Jeremy Griffin and Chelsea Felion think they are about to fill a niche for Rutland-area shoppers.
So, next month the pair will open the Toy Factory in the Diamond Run Mall in Rutland Town. The toy store will be appropriately located in the former KB Toys space in the mall on Route 7 South.
Griffin said a toy store is something the Rutland area needs.
He said a lot of people he’s talked to said, “we need a real toy store in Rutland.”
Although the local Walmart and Kmart stores have a section devoted to toys, Griffin said shoppers have to drive well out of town to find the closet general toy store.
“What we’re trying to do is get into the specialty market with a lot of the specialty toys,” he said. “We’re going to carry Fisher Price, Mattel, Lego, Hasbro. Your major brands.”
Another area toy store is Frogs and Lily Pads on Center Street in Rutland. The store specializes in toys, educational games and clothing for the very young.
The Toy Factory will also carry video and board games, and some novelty and baby items.
Griffin has some retail experience. For a time, he ran the Bidclub on Merchants Row. The store carried music, DVDs and a few toys.
He said Selion has some retail experience but now works in the medical field.
Griffin, who has a one-year lease, said the mall gave him a good deal on rent.
The mall has struggled in recent years to hang on to tenants. The 4,000-square-foot KB Toys spot has been vacant since the chain went out of business several years ago.
But Griffin said he likes his chances of succeeding at the mall with its foot traffic as opposed to the downtown.
If they do as well as expected, Griffin said he and Felion “are scouting out a second location in Burlington already.”