New toy store opens

Vacant building renovated into Sarge & Red’s


Loriana Mannino, Reporter

A vintage and retro toy and collectibles store called Sarge and Red’s is now open for business.

“We started collecting in 2013. We originally were just trying to raise money for adoption expenses,” co owner Dee Davis said. “We had gone though infertility and we were trying to start a family, so we started to sell things on eBay.”

They didn’t originally intend to start a business, but with a few friends’ help, they got something started.

“Some of my husband’s friends donated big duffel bags with Magic: The Gathering cards, and we found out that we could sell these,” Davis said. “We could sell them individually and there’s like a whole market for it, so we just started out with the cards and then we started selling toys. With us both working full-time, we just did it on the side.”

As interesting as their store already is, the building also has lots of history.

“This building used to be the old novelty shop,” Davis said. “It was vacant since 1992, so we bought it and renovated it.”

The new shop owners completely renewed the old building.

“It’s finally received a bright red face lift on the outside, and a total renovation inside,” Davis said. “The back half of the building dates back to the early 1900s while the front half has been standing since the 1960s.”

The building is very historic, but so are the memories inside.

“Inside has seen residences, a dentist office, a day care, and last a novelty shop,” co-owner John Davis said. “Some remember The Old Utica Novelty Shop where one could buy fake puke, stink bombs, Halloween costumes and racy cards.”

The name “Sarge and Red’s” came from their nicknames.

“He was a sergeant at the sheriff ’s office before he retired,” Dee said, “and because of my red hair.”

The toys sold there are vintage from the 70s, 80s, 90s, and Y2k.

“Where we really focus is 70s to current,” Dee said.

Their most popular collection is Star Wars products, “because we have a really good collection,” Dee said.

Their most rare product is also from Star Wars.

“We actually have one of the most rare things for Star Wars,” Dee said. “It’s the original Jawa from 1977.”

Sarge and Red’s has lots of popular products.

“The big sellers are Stars Wars, He-Man, G.I. Joe,” Dee said. “We do have a bunch of horror and wrestling figures.”

Dee also has some advice for Chieftains.

“Focus on your career being something you like,” Dee said, “and figure out how to make money from it.”