Monday, February 19, 2007

The Warner Bros. Studio Store

One of my favorite places to go used to be the Warner Bros. Studio Store. I visited several of them, in Chicago, New Orleans, Detroit, basically anywhere I travelled. Every time I walked into one I wished, like George Bailey in "It's a Wonderful Life," that I had a million dollars. As a Batman and Superman fan, the Studio Store was often the only place I could find collectibles suitable for my displays, like this one.

I remember one very pleasant trip that my wife and I took to the WBSS in Water Tower Place in Chicago. It was going to be the first of many birthday trips for me. We took the South Shore train from South Bend into the Loop in downtown Chicago, had a nice lunch, and took a cab up to the northernmost point of Michigan Avenue. After I'd bought all the stuff I could afford I was not looking forward to carrying it all, so I asked about shipping it home. As it happened, we found out that if we shipped things home, we only had to pay Indiana sales tax instead of Chicago sales tax, which at that time was a substantial difference. In fact, the difference covered the cost of shipping! So we walked out of the store empty-handed but happy, and walked the rest of the way south on the Magnificent Mile and shopped for Christmas gifts for our families, shipping everything home the same way.

Unfortunately, the Warner Brothers Studio Stores closed the next year and that turned out to be our last trip. Now that I'm about to be a father, though, I look forward to taking my daughter on the South Shore just for another pleasant day in Chicago, just like the one we took a few years ago. I can just see her wanting to go in the American Girl store, the Ghirardelli Chocolate shop, and other Magnificent Mile treats. I just wish there was one more place we could visit where she could see the huge Batman and Superman statues that greeted us at the door.

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