Mead Hall Games & Comics
, whose name is a nod to the European mead-drinking and feasting halls of centuries ago, is bringing new life to a basement-level space in Loring Park.
The shop will offer comic books with a special emphasis on local, independent work, along with music records, games and more, according to owner Ian Anderson.
It falls under the umbrella of The Afternoon Company
, which Anderson started a decade ago.
Mead Hall will occupy about 400 square feet of a 1,200-square-foot space that it shares with Afternoon Printing
, which also belongs to the parent company.
This was an area of the shop that the printing company didn’t need. As such, “We decided to make it spectacular,” he says, adding, “That’s what evolved into the comic book store.”
In the past, the space housed an Italian restaurant, but it’s long been vacant. “It was in rough shape, but we put a lot of work into it,” he says, adding that it gets plenty of natural light.
He and his partner Alex Bowes did the renovation work themselves, including the woodwork, plumbing, and electrical systems. “It’s been a great learning experience,” he says. “The space really needed some love. We’re really proud of it.”
Reflecting the heritage of its originators, it has a Nordic feel to it. “We’re trying to bring in a lot of design from the classic Nordic vibe we all know and love,” he says.
Much of the wood in the place has been reclaimed from an old school gymnasium that was in a flood. Although some pieces were ruined, “We cleaned it piece by piece,” he says, adding, “We were able to pull out the Dream Team pieces.”
By contrast, the print shop area, which is behind the comic store, has a more modern, industrial aesthetic, with plenty of metal.
“We hope we can embrace the nerds of the neighborhood,” and vice versa. “I think it’s an awesome spot to be in. We’re excited.”
The shop is slated to open later this month, or as soon as the proper licensing comes through, Anderson says.
Source: Ian Anderson, The Afternoon Company
Writer: Anna Pratt