What would life be without the occasional zany novelty item? Life would be gray, dull, routine, and boring. It would be a song that has rhythm, but no melody.
The front of the store. Note the neon sign, and lizard face and notice that they were moving locations:
Archie McPee is the grand champion of zany but tasteful novelties (they seem to stay away from the fart and sex jokes). They have their favorite topics, like rubber ducks, rubber chickens, bacon, cats, Bigfoot, squirrels, pickles, unicorns, the devil, and odd-ball historical figures. They have their favorite types of novelties, like finger puppets, wind-up toys, bandages, cat hats, mints, masks, squirrel feeders, lip balm, and air fresheners. Need underpants for your squirrel? They got it. Need a bacon-scented air freshener? They got it. Need an inflatable wizard hat for your cat? They got that too.
I’m a big fan of Archie McPhee. I’ve been ordering from their catalog for at least 20 years, particularly for Christmas gifts. My favorite item of all time is their (discontinued) Cicada Keychain. When I was in Seattle for business I visited their brick n’ mortar store. Every fan of zany novelty items should visit at least once in their lifetime.
The store was everything I hoped for: everything in the online catalog and more… much more. They had boxes of eyes meant for taxidermy and odd-ball stuff like that. Plus, giant heads, carnival fortune readers, and other props that fit the motif of their merchandise. The staff was helpful, and pleasant but not dead behind the eyes.
A row of the Devil Duckies that they are famous for
Giant paper-mache devil head:
Captain Archie, Fortune Teller:
The location I visited, in May of 2009, has since closed and the store has moved to a new location. I imagine the new location is just as magical.