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Rich's Hobby Town the Genesis by TeenTitans4Evr Rich's Hobby Town the Genesis by TeenTitans4Evr
I found this old photo searching online and wanted to share it. This was the coolest place on earth when you were a kid in the 70's and it started me out at an early age loving toys, model kits and making custom stuff. This was the famous - RICH'S HOBBY TOWN - in Pine Brook NJ.

{photo caption reads} "Rich Plamer ran the nation's largest volume hobby shop in Parsippany NJ (Pine Brook actually) AURORA models hired him to organize it's Monster Customizing contest in 1964. Aurora received national television attention when the CBS evening news visited his shop. Walter Cronkite and Palmer held a conversation in the "Monster Corner" of the store. Big Frankie occupies the top shelf in Monster Corner."

There was an article on this hobby shop in Amazing Figure Modeler Magazine, issue #38 too.

It was around since the late 50's in a spooky old church building where you had to walk up creaky old wooden steps - making the trip to the Monster Korner all that more scary & fun. The Hobby Shop it closed down in the early 80's due to kids being more interested in video games than building models. It sat abandoned for some years and later re-opened ironicly as a pinball & video arcade "Game Town" After the arcade closed the building was redone as an expensive yuppie resturant which of course failed.

The location was Hook Mountain Rd near Rt. 46 in Pine Brook NJ. - sadly the old church building was recently bulldozed in 2010 so if you googlemap the location it's just a rubble pit now. I'm sure some greedy developer plans to build much needed condos & starbucks. Ah, what sweet memories... www.youtube.com/watch?v=FCERFs…
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:iconuscga82:
Uscga82 Featured By Owner Oct 10, 2015
Used to go to Rich's from late 60s to mid 70s. Saved my allowance and odd job money to buy Formula 1 models made by Tamiya. Sparked my interest Engineering and racing. They used to ring the Church bell if you bought more than $50 worth of products. Coolest place. 
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:iconrstoer:
rstoer Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2015
You're story's correct as far as it goes but Rich's did not begin in that church on Hook Mt. Rd. It actually began in a small shop on a side street in Boonton, right near the train station. From there he opened a super sized shop, right on Rt 46 in Parsippany. The place was huge (for a hobby shop of the day) and they had a field out back where you could try the various remote control items. In fact it was called "Tri-O-Rama Field". This was the heyday of Rich's and it lasted until Interstate 80 was being built. It's my understanding they had to move to make way for a highway on-ramp but he might have sold the land because an offer from Holiday Inn was too good to refuse. Those landmarks should give you some idea of where it was situated. It was then he moved to Hook Mt. Rd, and the rest of the story you've already told. So Rich's was also the coolest place on earth for kids in the 50's and 60's (like me).
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:iconteentitans4evr:
TeenTitans4Evr Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2015  Professional Filmographer
I have dim memories of when I was about 4-5 years old,  but now I do remember the field out back with gas engine planes and a mini train track. I think it was near "Kiddie-Land" a small amusement park on 46 near Tahiti East (now a pizzaria)
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:iconslapshot64:
slapshot64 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Rich was my dads best friend. Every time I went there, I had to be shown the "Talk Quietly" sign just above his head there!!!! After walking up those Creepy stairs, everyone whispering made it all the more scary...
He used to fly remote control planes in the back and did this trick where he would lie on his back on the ground and fly the plane way up in the clouds. Then he would dive the plane straight down at him and the crowd would cheer as he pulled up at the last minute.
Rich took me to my first hockey game at Madison Square Garden Rangers vs Bobby Orr!!!
I miss you Mr Palmer, and Rich Jr!
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:iconteentitans4evr:
TeenTitans4Evr Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Professional Filmographer
we were lucky to have met such a great guy in our lifetimes
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:iconslapshot64:
slapshot64 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
Do you remember the train he had in the back...we used to ride it all the time!!!
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:iconteentitans4evr:
TeenTitans4Evr Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2012  Professional Filmographer
and with the KiddieLand amusement park right down the street it was such a fun filled day for us kids!
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:iconsupersovietpenguin:
SuperSovietPenguin Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2011  Student General Artist
Wow! Cool place. Shame my town doesn't have a hobby store, I have to drive a whole hour just to get to a decent hobby shop.
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:iconarcalian:
Arcalian Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
Nostalgia. I can spell, really.
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:iconarcalian:
Arcalian Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2011
Ahhh, sweet nostaliga....
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