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Sciandra’s Toyland — So Much Cooler Than Toys ‘R’ Us [BUFFALO: THEN AND NOW]

1787 Genesee Street Buffalo
Google Maps

It might be hard to believe, but in the 1950s and ’60s, the boarded-up building above, located at 1787 Genesee St., was Western New York’s largest toy store.

Sciandra’s Toyland featured 10,000 square feet of toys, games, dolls, stuffed animals — anything and everything that makes up a child’s ultimate toy collection. Its wares were so vast that founder Carl Sciandra was known as “Buffalo’s Toy King.”

Sciandra's Toyland
Boston Public Library, Flickr

Sciandra opened a second Toyland in Dunkirk in 1959, and then a third in Thruway Plaza at the corner of Walden Avenue and Harlem Road in Cheektowaga. During the holiday season, he also operated a Christmas Annex at 939 Broadway. Oh, right, and they had an awesome-looking delivery truck.

Next: Where Was Buffalo's First Water Station?

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