ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford’s “Toad Hall” has supplied the community with records and comic books for five decades.
The vintage book, record and comic shop continues to attract locals and visitors from far and wide. Nick Naruz, Toad Hall’s owner, said that selection has been the key to their success.
If residents want something, Toad Hall has it, and if residents do not know what they want, they will find somethings to walk out of there with.
“You gotta have used record stores, comic book shops, books,” Naruz said. “A place for people to gather, explore and find things the old fashion way.”
The location for all of that is 2106 Broadway. Toad Hall moved into the location in 1980, but the business was born in 1973.
The shop has continued to be a hot spot in the community for 50 years.
“A lot of people have a discovery of music and art through coming in and seeing it physcially,” Naruz said. “Come in, dig through the racks, find a random band they’ve never known. Find a book or an artist or an author that they’ve never read, or a comic book they never read.”
Naruz and his family took over the shop in 2005. Once a customer, he now runs the show with the help of four employees, including some family and some that have worked there for so long that they feel like family.
“Our selection, our price and our customer service is the three things we really focus on,” Naruz said. “Of course, we’ve been a here a long time, so that always helps, but those are the three main pillars to our business. Having a large selection is really what sets us apart from a lot of stores.”
Toad Hall Books and Records is always continuing to innovate, trying to keep up with the times. However, they give all the credit to those who walk in their doors every day.
“The community really keeps us alive. They really love the story, they love everything we are about, they love our selection. They love coming in and sharing a story about a record or about a comic book. So, we are honored to be here for 50 years, because the community supports us,” Naruz said. “We wouldn’t be here without them.”
The store’s biggest day of the year, National Record Store Day, is on April 22.