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Pulp 716 Coffee, Comics, and Cosplay
Located in historic Lockport, New York off of the Erie Canal is Pulp 716, a local comic and coffee shop that just so happens to be in my small town. Run by a wonderful married couple, Jay and Amy Berent, the quaint shop offers unique blends of coffee oriented around the local area as well as custom teas.
Amy is a professional make-up artist and performed projects in New York City, but wanted to have a shop for her husband Jay and her to call their own. Since the Lockport area isn’t the most movie oriented place, the idea of having a make-up shop wasn’t the most practical. That’s when Amy asked Jay if he could open his own business, what would it be? Jay informed her right away that he would want a coffee and comic shop. Within the first month of looking at locations they found their home at the corner of 45 East Avenue in Lockport, NY.
Being a coffee lover myself, I was extremely excited to try out this place. The coffees are blended to replicate coffees from the Lockport area’s past. These coffees include 1830 Canal Builders Blend, 1927 Roaring 20’s Roast, 1964 Beatles Brew, and 1977 Buffalo Blend. I am not really a Tea person, but there are a variety of different type of bubble tea variations available as well. When you order a Bubble Tea you get to choose from a variety of fruit juices and the option for little exploding juice pellets.
The atmosphere is warm and welcoming each time I’ve visited. Aside from the surprisingly large selection of newer comics, they also have a wall rack of vintage comics, including Woody Woodpecker. I even noticed a “Coffee Man” book on the rack that made me smile considering the coincidence.
Pulp 716 also offers a small selection of collectibles to include figurines and clothing. Aside from the regular nerd swag, the most impressive part of this shop is the understanding that patrons have children they need to entertain. The owners set aside a portion of their establishment that houses child sized tables with toys, Legos, and board games. The customers are also allowed to sift through the collection of vinyl to play some tunes on their turntable at the front window of the establishment.
To promote local talent, Pulp 716 has an area dedicated to local artists to aid in selling some of their works. Here they display a local artist each week that has an entire wall of their work overseeing the coffee shop. The second week that I was in the shop, the artwork included many paintings, drawings, and small trinkets that could be purchased.
From the short time I was able to speak with the owners and a couple of the employees, I knew right away they cared about the people that walked through their doors. Before I even informed that I wanted to write an article about the establishment, Jay overheard me saying I had kids, and he handed me a small stack of comics for them. There is a true passion, not only customer service, from the Pulp crew, but also for the materials that they carry. I won’t spoil anything here, but when you visit, ask Jay and Amy what they prefer between Marvel and DC so you can witness the awesomeness of the comic culture for yourself.
Now I know you are wondering, why is this article being posted here, this isn’t about Anime and Manga? Well In the first week of Pulp 716 being opened, they already have had requests for Manga and Anime related materials. Pulp has also sold on those Manga books right away, and wants to have a larger selection for customers since the demand seems to be there. Since our culture of Anime spans from Manga and crosses over into comics, people that create businesses like this one are vital to opening up more people into our culture.
Now since I started to write this article a couple months ago, I’ve been going to Pulp 716 every Saturday if not Friday and Saturday. Friday night Cosplay nights have been wonderful as of late granting the customers in costume a 10% discount on their purchases. Photo-shoots have also been something of a recurring event that has brought plenty of fun times. So if you are in the Lockport, NY area, please stop by this little shop, buy a coffee or tea, and enjoy some of our wonderful culture.