The Official “Scalliwag Toys Is NOT Closing” Special Announcement

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Belleville, ON: After 35 years as the welcoming faces and owners of Scalliwag Toys in Downtown Belleville, Richard and Karin Belanger are retiring at the end of January 2020. However, the store is not closing – as of February 1st 2020, its new owners Stacey Kerr and Stuart Long plan on keeping the spirit of Scalliwag Toys alive and well, and will build on the extraordinary legacy that Richard and Karin have created.

The Legacy

What significant events occurred in 1985? How about the release of Windows 1.0? Maybe you remember that the NES game system hit department store shelves that year. The Goonies and Back to the Future were in movie theatres. And — perhaps most important — Scalliwag Toys first opened its doors that March in downtown Belleville. (Just kidding about that “most important” thing — we all know that would be The Goonies, right?)  

The store’s original location was a tiny-but-charming space at 215 Front Street (now home to Miss Priss), followed in five or so years by a move to a slightly larger location at 250 Front Street. In 1995 — almost 25 years ago! — Scalliwag Toys moved to its present site when the business purchased the heritage building at 302 Front Street. 

The store’s focus and offerings have changed substantially over the years. For its first two decades, the focus was on traditional toys such as wooden train sets, European dolls, and quality plush animals. As time went on, owners Richard and Karin Belanger became more interested in the growing board games movement, and over time Scalliwag Toys has developed one of the area’s best selections of tabletop games.

Richard and Karin have been privileged over the last 35 years to watch more than a generation of Belleville’s children grow up. Many of these children have grown to become parents themselves, and now visit the shop with their own families.

And now, an ending makes a beautiful beginning! As of February 1, Scalliwag Toys will be under new ownership as Stacey Kerr and Stuart Long take over the business. 

Hailing from Whitby and newly transplanted to Belleville, Stacey and Stuart bring experience and enthusiasm for all things tabletop gaming. Just ask the movers who had to carry 12 boxes of their boardgame collection!

Stacey Kerr: “We’re so excited to join the thriving gaming community in Belleville as the new owners of Scalliwag Toys. We hope to keep a lot of the great elements that Richard and Karin have developed, but also add some of our own touches to the store and its products and activities that we think will really complement and enrich the experience for local regulars and newcomers alike.”

So the next time you’re wandering down Front Street, drop into Scalliwag Toys and say hello to Stacey and Stuart, and see what enchanting and fun new games that they have in stock! You might even spot Richard and Karin too, as they will be sharing the knowledge they’ve built up over their 35 years, and probably dropping by to play during Friday Night Magic sessions once and a while too.

© Karin Belanger 2018