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New Toy Store Coming to Grand Central This Fall

By Jill Colvin | July 11, 2011 4:35pm
Just Kidding Around hopes to open its new location this fall.
Just Kidding Around hopes to open its new location this fall.
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Facebook/Just Kidding Around

MIDTOWN — One of Manhattan's favorite independent toy stores is about to bring its plush toys, science kits and magic sets to Grand Central.

Kidding Around is set to open its second Manhattan location, at Grand Central Terminal, this fall. Its owner promises to wow kids and adults alike with its unique selection of toys and games, as well as its architectural whimsy.

“It’s really going to be a sight to behold,” said New Jersey’s Christina Clark, who’s been in the toy business for 20 years and launched the stores with her husband, a fine wood worker.

Grand Central Terminal is currently without a toy store. The Children’s General Store closed more than two years ago.

To bring some kid-friendly fun back to the station, the couple is planning an elaborate, Victorian design, with gingerbread trim, a playful teal, deep pink, yellow and green color scheme and a toy train chugging around the store.

Clark, 58, hopes the new, inviting space will appeal to tourists and locals alike, and plans to stock larger toys along with small items that parents can buy to keep kids entertained during train trips.

Because the location is smaller than its existing outposts in Montclair, N.J., and on West 15th Street, staff won’t be able to offer the same types of activities and craft hours as at its others stores do.

Still, she hopes to deliver the same high-quality service her
customers have come to expect.

"We have a very personal approach," she said. “We walk you through every gift you need to get... It’s a very small-town feel in a toy store.”

Clark hopes to open her doors Oct. 1.