I finally had a chance to get out to Oakville to visit Retrofestive. After wanting to for so long, I was thrilled to get there. It’s Canada’s Pop Culture Christmas store and it’s the most Christmas goodies you could ever want to see in one place. It’s overwhelming really. I didn’t know what to do with myself once I got in. I thought it would be a lot smaller but there was room after room of Christmas goodness: Ornaments, Christmas sweaters, games, cards, knick-knacks, whatever. A return trip may be in order just so I can get a handle on what I saw!
You can recognize the place by the Santas and the giant Bumble outside, and a most gracious Bumble he was, he even let us stop and take our pictures with him! Then inside you’re welcomed by free cider and sugar cookies. Yep, they know how to do Christmas right. After that, it’s floor to ceiling Christmas, and only in a good way. More sweaters than I’ve ever seen in one place, more Funko Pop figures that I’d ever seen, almost more Christmas than I’d ever seen, and that’s saying a lot.
It was a real challenge to take in the whole store. Multiple visits sounds like a good idea, just to be able to take it in. I looked at everything, but I had come with two friends who were very much into it as well. I think if they weren’t there, I’d have spent a lot more time and a lot more money. It’s probably really good that there were there. I order from the website every year so it’s no surprise about the good stuff they have, but getting to see it all in person was so much better. And oh so Christmassy.
Meeting Tyler and Jordie
My work on Christmas projects like this site and my Christmas twitter account @chrspecials has introduced me to some really wonderful people. Part of the reason for this journey was because I wanted to introduce myself to the owners Tyler and Jordie Swartz. They made the documentary ‘Roadtrip for Ralphie’ and Tyler has written books on ‘A Christmas Story’. I’ve seen so much of what they’ve done I felt like I sort of already knew them. Plus we have mutual friends so I thought, now’s the time to introduce myself. And I feel confident our paths will cross again.
They were both such wonderful and gracious people, taking some time to chat with me while the store around us bustled. Tyler even gave me a copy of his book and signed it to me. That was a real treat. It was quite an honour to meet them. I really love the people who make the Christmas community so friendly and special and Tyler and Jordie are no exception. They’re a shining example. I have never been shy about promoting their business in person and on Twitter and that’s because, not only do they have great stuff, but they show such passion and excitement for what they do. The Christmas community would be less without their efforts, and I love getting to help share what they do.
Perfect End to A Perfect Christmas Week
My trip to Retrofestive capped off an incredible week. Christmas shopping, Christmas lunches and a Christmas concert; it was the perfect conclusion to a week of Christmas. If you’re a Christmas person like I am, and if you ever find yourself anywhere near Oakville, Ontario, you really need to get to the Retrofestive store. (Say hi to Bumble for me). If not, the website is great too, and a little less overwhelming! I can’t wait to go back!
I just HAVE to make it there this year!