The plaque outside Big Fun fittingly reads that it’s listed on the National Registry of Hysterical Places.

Big Fun makes you feel like a big kid. Photo by: Trishna Patel

From the extremely wacky to the mildly inappropriate, Big Fun is a “a warehouse of nerda-bilia and nostalgia.” Everything and anything from your childhood can and will be found. Don’t think there’s a store that carries that vintage He-Man lunchbox or Smurf figurine anymore? Think again because this is Big Fun, where somewhere in those mile high stacks is any collectable and classic toy you could ever imagine.

The most enjoyable part of Big Fun, other than taking an inevitable trip down memory lane, was meeting president and founder Steve Presser.”I’m in the business of making people feel good,” he said about his labor of love. “But I enjoy it so much that I really haven’t worked a day in my life.”

Presser’s larger-than-life, enthusiastic attitude has helped establish a devoted following despite being a small niche business. No place for novelty stores in a recession?  Think again. The store is rarely empty and most of the customers are regulars. Big Fun’s success is a testament to Cleveland’s resilience. It’s like Presser said, “You take care of people, they’ll take care of you.”


Trishna Patel

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