> Has anybody heard of Hobby Lobby? There is a a new hobby
> store going up in town and I just wanted to know if they
> would have a good selection of rocket material.
> I live in Champaign,Illinios. Any info about this store would
> be welcomed.
Compare Hobby Lobby to Michael's--a crafter's store with a hobby shop.
The chain started right here in Oklahoma City about 20 years ago and has
been going gang busters since--I'm glad its expanded all the way to
Illinois. The corporation also owns (or was merged with) another locally
started chain of Christian Bookstore--Office Supply Stores called Mardels.
The startup story is interesting but I do not feel qualified to tell it
well. My best memory is of a hippy-like couple wanting to get out on
their own. They lived in my neighborhood and my ex-wife knew the female
half of the couple.
To answer your question about selection, expect a good display of Estes (&
only Estes products) kits and the best selling motors. To give you a
comparison, we have a retired casulty insurance agent in town who rented
two suburban offices side by side. Lots of inter-connecting doors between
the insurance office and the pre***ly model rail-roading hobby shop.
Any thing you wanted re model rr was there or quickly obtrainable with two
resident experts (his wife became very involved on the hobby side). He
recently retired, moved the hobby shop to a strip center (apparently owned
by the insurance co he sold for) and has Saturday seminars of rr and model
ship building, etc. His selection of rocketry materials seems to be the
Estes start-up supplies for a retailer that haven't sold and the same
selection of motors as Hobby Lobby--I'm not into collecting antiques--I
may have missed some real values. But I went once (for rocketry not rr),
and returned to Michaels and Hobby Lobby--mail order for the ***.
In short Hobby Lobby is to a Hobby Store like the MegaMart supermarket
(with a broad selection of only a few brands handily packaged) is to my
great-grandfather's neighborhood grocery that bought in bulk and locally
whenever possible, but only in season.