Forbidden Planet NYC, one of the oldest and biggest comic book stores in New York City, is at risk of closing due to being shut down during this pandemic. The store has started a GoFundMe in order to stay afloat and to make sure that its employees have a place to return to once the shelter-in-place orders are over.
Jeff Ayers, the General Manager of the store, posted the GoFundMe around 19 hours ago as of the time of this writing, and they have already raised $13,721 of their $300,000 goal, with over 200 donors:
We’ve gone a month with zero revenue coming in and massive expenses going out. Rent, utilities, and other bills have added up quickly. The cost of doing business in New York City is astronomical, especially in a ground floor location off Union Square. We’ve recently turned our website back on for mail order, but honestly this will yield just a small portion of what is needed to keep us viable. Even when we’re able to open again we will face enormous challenges amidst the continuing epidemic. We want all of our staff to have a job waiting for them when the quarantine is lifted, and of course their safety and that of our customers will be of paramount concern. We understand that things are tough and other good causes in this time of need abound, but we ask that you help in any way you can. Even if it’s just by sharing this campaign.
As a born and raised New Yorker, I have fond memories of going to Forbidden Planet with my mother. It was my number one place to go and buy manga that I couldn’t find anywhere else. During the holidays when I gave my mom my Christmas list filled with titles she had never heard of, she could go to the people at Forbidden Planet and get the help she needed. No trip to Union Square over the weekend was complete without stopping by there for me to spend at least $20 on another volume of Mars or Zodiac P.I. or Peach Girl (I stand by all those choices).
I used to work at the Strand Bookstore so for a long time, so Forbidden Planet was my neighbor. I’d walk past it on my way to and from work, smiling at the T-2 statue in the window and always checking the displays to see if there was something new. I’ve made friends with the people who worked there and have seen it be a place filled with people who care about comics. I couldn’t imagine it not being there as recourse or as a place of employment. I made a small donation, and if you care about the store, whether you’re a local or you’ve only visited, sharing or donating would be awesome.
I can’t remember a time when @FPNYC wasn’t in my life. It’s where I found my love of comics, and where I met some of my best friends. It’s where I realized I wanted to MAKE comics.
FP is an insitituation that has touched hundreds of thousands of lives. Help give back if you can. https://t.co/67e9jMRa01
— ✊🏾Vita Ayala🇵🇷🏳️🌈 (@definitelyvita) April 23, 2020
When we talk about going “back to normal,” things like this remind me that, when this is all over, we could walk out into the world with things that we considered normal completely gone. If you can help, this is a way to protect a small business in an industry a lot of us care about and help the employees who work there.
(via Bleeding Cool, image: Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)
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