With metro Phoenix closures looming, Toys R Us customers prepare to say goodbye


Parent Ronald Lewis discusses the looming closure of a Phoenix Toys R Us on March 11, 2018. Mark Henle/azcentral.com

One boy peered at a Calico Critters display, a Pikachu doll hanging from his hand. Another excitedly clutched a Nerf gun. A little girl rode out on a brand-new pink bike.

In its final days, a Phoenix Toys R Us is still bringing moments of joy to its enthusiastic — but dwindling — customer base.

The retailer has filed for bankruptcy and faces complete liquidation if it doesn’t find a last-minute financial solution. A bankruptcy-court filing shows that the chain plans to close six Arizona stores by mid-April.

The affected locations:

  • 12801 North Tatum Boulevard in Phoenix.
  • 9139 Indian Bend Road in Scottsdale.
  • 7000 E. Mayo Blvd. in Scottsdale.
  • U.S. 60 and Signal Butte Road in Mesa.
  • 4619 N. Oracle Road in Tucson.
  • 801 W. 32nd St. in Yuma.

Toys deeply discounted

A closing sale has already started at the Toys R Us near Paradise Valley Mall, with toys marked down by as much as 50 percent. Signs flanking the store windows read, “Nothing held back!” 

Some toys are marked down 20 percent, such as a $199.99 Little Tikes Magical Unicorn Carriage selling for $119.99.

SEE ALSO: Toys R Us timeline: History of the nation’s top toy chain

Smaller trinkets from the Fungus AmungUs line are as cheap as $1.78.

A Thomas the Tank Engine Table is going for $139.99, down from $199.99. 

But not all toys are getting the discount treatment. Meg Bauman came with her children for Legos on Sunday, but they left with a Nerf toy and robot after finding the promised discounts didn’t apply to some of the building-brick toys they wanted.

IS YOUR STORE CLOSING?: See if your Toys R Us store is on the closure list

The expected closures didn’t surprise Bauman. 

“I think their prices were high, and it was kind of inevitable,” she said. 

A family staple 

Sudhir Reddy, whose cart slowly accumulated toys as he browsed with his 6-year-old daughter, said he hated “to see the store go.”

“Amazon — I don’t know. It’s killing everything,” he said.

Reddy wasn’t the only wistful customer.

RELATED: Toys R Us cuts prices by up to 30% as store-closing sales begin

Andre Mitchell, who bought his son an Overdrive race car toy Sunday, said he likes Toys R Us because it always has the “niche toys,” usually has a bigger selection than other big-box stores and does price-matching. 

He recalled going to Toys R Us when he was a kid for the after-Christmas sales, money from his grandparents in hand. 

“We’d come here and clean up,” Mitchell said, standing in the parking lot.


Toys R Us plans to shutter about 20% of its U.S. store fleet, saying “tough decisions” are needed to reinvent their brands. USA TODAY


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