A Restored Pratt Street
Through improved and restored retail storefronts, renovated residential spaces, and curated programming, Pratt St is being rediscovered.
Pratt Street is about to be even more fun! Wonderland Comics, a Connecticut-born comic store, is opening a new location in Hartford. We took a moment to sit down with Zak, part owner, to learn more about what they offer. In 2018, Zak and his wife, Kristen, purchased Wonderland Comics from its second owner. Zak and Kristen are both avid comic fans and run Wonderland Comics full time.
Q: How long has Wonderland Comics been in CT?
Wonderland Comics was established in Putnam, CT in 1992. We celebrated our 30th anniversary last year.
Q: How did you get started in the comic world?
Like most other adults—as a child. My best friend, who passed away in high school, got me into comics when I was around 10 or 11. We used to ride our bikes down to the local comic shop (Sarge’s Comics in New London) to buy new comics, marvel at the ones we couldn’t afford, and then go back to his house and try and recreate superhero art from some of our favorite artists. My comic collecting was temporarily put on hold when I joined the Air Force in 2001, as I spent most of that time overseas, but luckily, I married an artist who was into manga and pop culture as well. At the beginning of 2018, my wife Kristen and I made the decision to go all in, and we bought Wonderland Comics from its second owner, who had run the business since 2002.
Q: Will this be a second location for you, or will Pratt Street be your new primary location?
This will be our second location. The Putnam location will remain our flagship store.
Q: Can you explain what your store offers and what makes you unique?
We’re unique in that we offer a wide variety of products for all ages and interests to include products you can’t find in a big box store (comics being one of them). In addition to new and back issued comics from Marvel, DC, Image, IDW Publishing, Boom Studios, Stranger Comics and more, we carry a wide selection of action figures and toys, trading card games such as Pokemon and Magic the Gathering, tabletop and board games, graphic novels, manga, model kits, high end collectibles, such as Sideshow statues, and Hot Toys figures, and tons more. While we won’t be able to carry the same volume we have in Putnam (it’s roughly 3x the space of the Pratt Street location), we’re planning on bringing as big of a selection as we can.
In addition to all of the products you’ll be able to find, we’re also looking forward to bringing Free Comic Book Day, which happens every year on the first Saturday in May, to Hartford. For those not familiar, Free Comic Book Day, or FCBD, is an event that was established in the early 2000’s to celebrate the comic book industry. There are typically a few dozen FCBD titles to choose from, with something for every age range, and we end up giving thousands out every event in Putnam. We also hope to bring artists and creators into the shop for signings, and have a few other things planned for the Pratt Street location as well.
Q: Anything else you’d like to highlight about your store?
Many of our products can be ordered off our website and shipped to home, or held for pick up in-store, to include pre-orders for new comics and other collectibles. Comic fans interested in setting up a subscription at the Pratt Street location can reach out to us in advance to secure one of our limited subscriber boxes (not a limit on how many subscribers we can have, just a limit on physical bins 😊) by emailing us at email@example.com. We also offer custom orders for books, novels, and textbooks, and can (usually) match Amazon and Barnes & Noble pricing for most new and best sellers when custom ordering.
Q: We are so excited to visit! When do you plan to open?
We’re hoping before the start of the holiday shopping season at the latest.
Q: What drew you to Pratt Street?
How inviting it is—the buildings are historic and beautiful, while the closure of the street to car traffic has made accessing the shops easier and more welcoming.
Q: What are you looking forward to most about joining the Pratt Street community?
The community—there are a ton of wonderful and diverse businesses on Pratt Street that we’re looking forward to joining, and we’re hoping that our inclusion will bring more to Pratt Street.
Q: How can our readers stay up to date on your opening and any upcoming events?
Wonderland Comics should be open in time for holiday shopping! Follow @prattstreethartford to stay up to date on Wonderland Comics and the other new businesses coming to the area.Go Back