For 19 years, Games of Berkeley lived at 2151 Shattuck (at Center). It calls itself the Bay Area’s “oldest tabletop game store.” It started on Addison Street in 1980 and moved to Shattuck near University, before moving into its corner location on Shattuck and Center in 1997.
This is Erik Bigglestone, owner/manager. Every iota of Games of Berkeley is quirky. It doesn’t fit the rules for what I post about, but how can one seriously talk about a quirky Berkeley and not touch on Games of Berkeley? Exactly. Can’t.
A few scenes from the Shattuck store:
In the early 1990s, my son Jake got into painting miniature figures.
Together we painted a couple hundred Civil War figures. I remember the hours doing this at the big table in the kitchen with great fondness. So does he. The Civil War figures are somewhere in the garage or I’d show them. Here are some of the miniature figures as displayed at the Shattuck store:
Over the last several months, Games of Berkeley has moved to 2510 Durant, just above Telegraph.
The new home of Games of Berkeley started life as a movie theater. It was designed by Walter H. Ratcliff Jr. and built in 1914. The Moving Picture World described the lobby: “One of the most interesting features of the theater is the lobby, which faces the university grounds. This is about 15 by 35 feet in size, with a red tile floor, and has been fitted up in an unusually attractive manner. Here are tables, old hickory furniture, potted plants and hanging baskets, affording a splendid setting for the posters which are hung in neat frames from the walls and shown on attractive easels. In its general appearance the lobby reminds one of a broad home veranda and is not much different from the entrances to some of the fine sorority houses in the neighborhood.”
Since it was a theater, it has had a number of incarnations, most notably as Tower Records.
Most recently, it was home to Earth’s Bizarre.
Robert Keaton had big hopes for Earth’s Bizarre.
It opened in 2014 and closed in 2015. Curios and collectibles. Very hippie except the prices – very expensive. Didn’t make it.
It is the new home for Games of Berkeley, starting with a new paint job on the exterior.
The interior still rocks with the mirrored barrel ceilings.
And the games:
Wow. What a sight. What visuals!
The painted miniatures didn’t make the trek from Shattuck to Durant. They were the property of private collectors, and none came east to Durant. Dang! They were an inspiration.
I showed the photos to my friend. He went back to his quarters and returned with a photo.
His father, mother, twin, and younger brother – and him – playing a board game. Who knew? He brought out something else. His favorite board game from when he was a kid.
Again, who knew? I never heard of that game.
What about the post?