It is always a pleasure to stroll down one of several revitalized downtowns in our region. On this particular day, the destination was Phyl's of Bristol - a most unique shop which recently relocated to State Street and one that is easily recognized by its large, colorful awning.
The atmosphere of Phyl’s of Bristol is one of an old toy store. The hardwood floors have that old-fashioned creak and the merchandise itself reminds one of childhood favorites. The selection of merchandise ranges from collegiate and educational toys to dolls and unique gifts.
Originally established in Wise, Va., by Phyllis Prince in the early 1990s, the store has moved several times and “re-invented” itself. Cindy, Phyllis’ daughter and a preschool special needs teacher, became a partner in 2007, and granddaughter Katie helps out when she’s not working as an occupational therapist.
The front of the store is filled with a variety of collegiate merchandise featuring primarily SEC and ACC schools, including the family favorite, Virginia Tech, which was attended by all six of Phyllis' children and several of her grandchildren.
Phyl’s also carries several collectible lines from Lenox, Jim Shore, San Francisco Music Box, Madame Alexander and Adora dolls.
About half of the store is devoted to a variety of toys that will challenge your child's imagination - puzzles and art products by Melissa and Doug, Thomas the Train and Chuggington train products, stuffed animals, doll houses, puppets, paper dolls, and western-themed items.
The matriarch of the family, Phyllis Prince (Phyl), has maintained a high standard in customer service since first opening the store. That's why Phyl’s is open convenient hours (11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Saturday). The shop also stays open extended hours during events on State Street.
Phyl’s also offers “free” gift wrap with a small minimum purchase, and educators receive a 10 percent discount.
Whether you are looking for a birthday gift, a get well card, special toy, or collegiate jewelry or accessory, Phyl’s of Bristol can help you find that perfect gift to light up anyone’s day!
Phyl’s of Bristol is located at 507 State Street in Bristol, Va. The telephone number is 276-591-1652, and the store's website is http://www.phylsofbristol.com/.