Amber & Todd Jordan Have Collected a Big Following at Kokomo Toys & Collectibles
Photographer / Jim Hunt
Since its 2014 opening on East Sycamore Street, Kokomo Toys & Collectibles has been a local, regional and national shopping destination for all ages.
And it’s not difficult to see why. The shop carries a staggeringly extensive selection of new and vintage toys, action figures and stuffed animals going back to the 1960s, making it a veritable castle of collectibles for all ages.
After leaving their jobs at General Motors back in 2008, Amber and Todd Jordan felt the time was right to start a business they felt passionate about. Both had accumulated a fairly sizable assortment of action figures and other collectibles over the years (some of Amber’s favorites as a kid were He-Man, She-Ra and My Little Pony), and they figured they could do a decent trade selling a few.
The Jordans began operating out of a modest, 950-square-foot space on Morgan Street, buying and selling toys and action figures primarily online. The location was less than ideal for walk-in traffic, and after a few years, the couple began to realize the size of their growing inventory would necessitate a bigger space anyway. They moved to their current East Sycamore Street location and officially opened Kokomo Toys & Collectibles in early 2014, and their location, next to comic book shop Comics Cubed and near Kingdom Cards & Games on Walnut Street, has become affectionately known among locals as Geek Street.
With what Amber describes as the largest selection of action figures in the midwest, Kokomo Toys buys, sells and trades current and retro Marvel, D.C., Star Wars, G.I. Joe and Transformers figures to name just a few.
“We have modern and vintage items for all ages and all budgets,” says Amber, adding that the internet has made searching out hard-to-find collectibles much easier than brick-and-mortar shopping alone, ever since she and Todd began buying and selling them for a living. “Vintage toys are always the most popular from the 80s and 90s, but anything Star Wars and also more modern toys like Funko Pop! figures are a huge hit here.”
Shoppers come from all corners of the state and country just to have a look around at the ever-expanding inventory. Amber says her stock is usually so extensive she couldn’t even put a number on it, and as long as the customers keep showing up, she and Todd will continue to keep the racks and shelves crammed with new and vintage items.
“We owe all our success to our loyal customers and the support of our amazing community,” she says.
Born and raised in Kokomo, the Jordans have lived their entire lives here and say the area is ideal for raising their children and running a business.
“We love this community and the changes that have been going on, specifically downtown and how we are a more walkable city with beautiful trails and amazing locally-owned and operated businesses here,” Amber says.
The couple donates regularly to the Kokomo Humane Society, We Care and Toys for Tots, and earlier this year they teamed up with their fellow Geek Street proprietors — Shawn Hilton, owner of Comics Cubed, and Jason Van Haecke, owner of Kingdom Cards & Games — to present the first-ever Geek Street Scholarship. The inaugural $500 award went to Kokomo resident Isabella Eisaman, a sophomore in college studying chemistry, two-dimensional art and museum studies.
The scholarship began as a brainstorm of Hilton’s, as a way to give back to the community and help locals in need of money for educational purposes. Van Haecke and the Jordans jumped on board right away when approached by Hilton, and donations for the Geek Street Scholarship are collected at the three stores throughout the year.
Amber says she and Todd never tire of seeing collectors come from near and far just to browse around for a while, and they’ve been pleased with the consistent turnout through the years.
“Often (customers) book hotels and spend the day in Kokomo enjoying activities, nightlife and restaurants,” she says. “Our customers know it’s worth the drive to travel here from all over the midwest because it’s a toy show every day we open. We have been a part of countless family traditions, and families make the pilgrimage here once and sometimes twice a year. We are honored to be a part of their family traditions.”
Kokomo Toys & Collectibles is located at 111 East Sycamore Street in Kokomo. For more information, call 765-868-8151 or visit kokomotoys.com. Hours of operation are Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 5 p.m.