Mad World Records is leaving the Square after nine years in downtown Denton.
The storefront won’t stay empty, though: Tim Stoltzfus, owner of More Fun Comics & Games, will open More Fun Toys!, a new toy store, in the space at 115 W. Hickory St.
And it will still have records.
Mark Burke, owner of Mad World, said his record shop will now only operate online, as he’s spent the past few months cataloging inventory. For local online buyers, there will be an option to pick up orders at More Fun Toys! once it opens, hopefully in August.
While the decision to close the storefront was hard, Burke said that between the shutdown and his son telling him he wanted the store to close so the family could spend more time together, the timing was right.
“We’ve thought about it here and there for a long time, but have never closed because we know it means a ton to a lot of people, and I still enjoyed it,” Burke said. “It has been a labor of love and it always was, but I have other talents and I can still do this with the website and other things too, and that’s pretty exciting to me.”
Burke opened the Denton storefront with his wife, Maria, in March 2011 after working in record shops since the ’90s. Mad World is one of the latest independent record stores around the country to close during the pandemic.
While an online shop isn’t the same experience, Burke hopes customers will continue to shop online through Mad World Records for their indie music needs.
“I know the feel and the smell and the touch, it’s not the same as a record store,” he said. “But it’s a safe way to support a family business.”
With the shop’s online transition, it made sense to offer a pickup option at More Fun Toys!, especially as a frequent Mad World customer, Stoltzfus said.
“It was one of the first things in my mind — having access to indie music choices is a big deal in any community right now,” he said. “I’m a huge music fan. I absolutely appreciate the value and hope we can continue to connect Denton with music through Mark’s pickup orders while we bring a new experience to the Square.”
The new store, a few businesses down from More Fun Comics & Games (which will stay open, too), will feature toys of all kinds, from vintage toys worth hundreds of dollars to $5 Beanie Babies, and everything in between. Right now, the plan is to open in mid- to late August.
Burke said in a way it’s poetic that a toy store will replace the record shop. When he opened Mad World in 2011, there were no mom-and-pop indie record shops, and now in Denton there are no locally owned toy stores.
Of Stoltzfus, Burke said: “He’s also bringing back something that is familiar for people who are older, and is fun for the little guys, too.”