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Foxprowl Collectibles

May 7, 2022 - 9:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, news.

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It was Free Comic Day 2022 at Foxprowl on Ellicott Street in Batavia today and some popular superheroes and villains made a guest appearance.

Submitted photos. Top photo: Batman, Spider-Man, Bill Hume, Moon Knight, Wonder Woman & Penguin. 

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Batman squares off against his arch-rival the Penguin.

December 13, 2021 - 8:45am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, news.

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Santa, along with Mrs. Claus made his annual visit to Foxprowl Collectibles on Ellicott Street, Batavia, this weekend.

Spider-Man will be in the story this Saturday from 2 to 4 p.m.

Submitted photo and information.

 

August 14, 2020 - 4:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, business.

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Ten years ago, Bill Hume told The Batavian he was living his dream.

He had just opened Foxprowl Collectables at 440 Ellicott St., Batavia, and was excited to translate his passion for action figures and comic book heroes into a real business.

In 2020, the dream is still alive even if there have been challenges over the past decade.

Hume expanded his Ellicott Street location for awhile, tried a location at Jackson and Main for awhile tried selling just online for awhile, even hosted a couple of collectible conventions in Batavia. Each step of the way he's had to make adjustments, but all along he kept the dream alive.

"People started shopping on the internet more and my sales were going down and then sales started going down because the merchandise that I carry started becoming predominate in Target and Walmart and more mainstream with the success Marvel and Star Wars movies," Hume said. "I came to what was kind of tough realization that you’ve got to teach an old dog new tricks. First, it was, ‘what’s wrong with the people?’ and then I came to the realization that it's me not changing with the times. It was a little difficult to swallow."

He made the changes needed, reducing overhead, switching up inventory, and changing his marketing message, and even so, despite the challenges of a global pandemic, the dream is still alive.

He intends to be around for Foxprowl's 20th anniversary in 10 years, he said, as a "staple in the community."

Top photo: Bill Hume, wife and co-owner Joy Hume, and staff member Brenden Gillard.

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File Photo: Bill Hume shortly after Foxprowl opened in 2010.

Previously: Batavia native opens pop culture collectibles store on Ellicott Street

For all of our Foxprowl coverage over the years, click here.

March 19, 2020 - 2:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in COVID-19, news, video, live stream, Foxprowl Collectibles.
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Interview with Bill Hume, owner of Foxprowl Collectables.

December 8, 2019 - 12:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, news, batavia.

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Santa and Mrs. Claus, along with a few superheroes, made his annual visit to Foxprowl Collectables on Ellicott Street on Saturday.

Submitted photo.

November 8, 2019 - 7:15pm

Photo, from left: Joy and Bill Hume Foxprowl Collectibles owners, Shane Dreyer Work Experience participant, and Jeffrey Young Employment and Training counselor.

Submitted photo and press release:

The Genesee County Job Development Bureau announces Foxprowl Collectables as Business of the Month for October.

The Business of the Month was introduced to acknowledge the exceptional work and the results gained by the contributions of local businesses to the development of a skilled workforce.

The bureau congratulates Foxprowl Collectables for being selected as the inaugural winner of this award and we wish them the best for the future. 

Businesses are nominated based on their demonstrated commitment to the growth of our workforce and thus the well-being of the county.

The Business of the Month Award seeks to recognize contributions to providing paid/unpaid work experiences that allow job seekers to gain experience and develop their skills.

We also consider mentorship, career tracks, innovation in recruitment, hiring, and/or retention, utilization of the One Stop Services, and a commitment to workforce retention in selecting our award winner each month. 

Jeff Young, Employment and Training counselor, says he's proud of his connection to Foxprowl Collectables, which is located at 440 Ellicott St. in the City of Batavia.

“Mr. Hume sets aside time to teach and mentor our customer," Young said. "He is covering all the aspects of his business; and our client is developing many useful transferable skills. His hands-on approach is really benefiting both his business and our client.”

Job Development prides itself on the many business connections that help us to serve our customers. This award is given to commend those most deserving for their hard work and commitment to supporting career goals.

To learn more about how your business can benefit by serving as a work experience site or sponsoring an on-the-job training, please call the Genesee County Job Development Bureau (585-344-2042), and to learn more about Foxprowl Collectables go to their website (http://www.foxprowl.com/).

May 28, 2019 - 12:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batman, batavia, business.

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Batman doesn't smile. He doesn't smile when posing with Bill and Joy Hume. He doesn't smile when he has a new book out. He doesn't smile while making a public appearance on a Saturday at Foxprowl Collectables.

In this case, Batman is cosplay specialist, public speaker, and author William Lorenz Jr., of Buffalo, and his new book is "The Ballad of Buffalo's Best Batman."

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April 26, 2019 - 11:23pm
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December 2, 2018 - 2:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, news, Christmas.

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Six-year-old Taylor Moorehead tells Santa and Mrs. Claus that she wants a remote car for Christmas during a visit to Foxprowl on Ellicott Street in Batavia yesterday.

A few superheroes also dropped in at the store, as well.

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October 1, 2018 - 4:39pm
posted by Billie Owens in KISS THIS, Foxprowl Collectibles, news, music, Batavia Downs.

KISS THIS photo from Batavia Downs.

KISS THIS -- the East Coast's premiere KISS tribute band, based in Buffalo, will be the stars of a meet-and-greet photo op in full regalia at Foxprowl Collectables on Tuesday (Oct. 2).

Its members are Kevin Blakita - Paul Stanley (Starchild), John Jeffrey - Ace Frehley (Spaceman), Julius Giambelluca - Eric Carr (the Fox), Bradley Heath - Eric Singer (The Catman), Taylor Stursa - Gene Simmons (The Demon).

Fans are welcome to do some "KISSmas" shopping early since all KISS collectibles will be 10 percent off during the band's brief store visit -- from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

Foxprowl relocated to its old digs, at 440 Ellicott St. in the City of Batavia.

Also, KISS THIS will appear in concert Saturday Oct. 13 at Batavia Downs. Tickets are $10. Doors open at 7 p.m.; concert starts at 8. Minors under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

For concert tickets, click here.

August 5, 2018 - 12:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, business, batavia, news.

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The collectibles store Foxprowl is back at its original location, 440 Ellicott St., Batavia, after a couple of years of trying a location at Main and Jackson and pop-up stores and online sales.

After a barbershop that had moved into the location closed, owners Bill and Joy Hume saw it as an opportunity to get back to their roots.

"It’s a familiar spot," Bill Hume said. "I like the building and the location and I like the landlord so it was kind of obvious. It worked out good. It just happened to become available and I jumped on it. My gut instinct told me, go back home."

Added bonus, his stock of T-shirts with the 440 Ellicott St. address on them is back in style.

Yesterday, the Chamber of Commerce was on hand for a ribbon cutting with help from Batman's Penguin, Wolverine, Spider-Man & Velma from Scooby-Doo, all from WNY Superheroes and Cosplayers.

The grand-reopening yesterday also included appearances by Brenden Gillard, artist, voice actor, costume designer, and author. Anthony Zicari, comic writer and editor, was also on hand.

Bill Hume said he will bring in more celebrity guests and he's also looking to bring back Foxprowl Con, perhaps in the coming year, with some new ideas.

July 31, 2018 - 5:00pm
posted by Billie Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, business, news, batavia, notify, toys.

(File photos.)

Foxprowl Collectables has come full circle. This Saturday, Aug. 4, at 11 a.m., the toy and collectibles shop will host a Grand Opening in their former location -- 440 Ellicott St. in the City of Batavia.

Until then, they are open for a few hours each day there while getting things set up for regular business.

At the Grand Opening, there will be:

  • Brenden Gillard, an artist, voice actor, costume designer and "Barnes & Nobles best-selling author";
  • Anthony Zicari, comic writer and editor, whose worked on Dark Horse, Antarctic Press, London Night Studios, Narwain Publishing, Marvel Comics, Legendary Press, and INKWERK Studios;
  • A Genesee County Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting at noon;
  • Meet-and-greet pics with Batman's Penguin, Wolverine, Spider-Man, and Scooby-Doo;
  • Giveaways and more!

Bill and Joy Hume, married business partners, opened their business at 440 Ellicott St. in 2010. It had begun the year before as an eBay operation.

On Sept. 1, 2016, having outgrown the Ellicott Street storefront, they moved into roomier, swankier quarters at the southeast corner of Main and Jackson streets. In early 2017, the Genesee County Chamber of Commerce named Foxprowl the Entrepreneurial Business of the Year for 2016.

A few months later, in June 2017, the Humes announced they would shutter their store altogether to concentrate on online sales, supplemented by "pop-up" or temporary store dates at the Falleti Ice Arena, and the ever-popular annual Foxprowl-Con at the Quality Inn & Suites in Batavia.

We can only guess that customers clamored for their brick-and-mortar return, enabling them to "geek out," as Bill Hume likes to say, on a regular ongoing basis when the mood strikes.

December 9, 2017 - 7:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, business, news.

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Bill Hume popped up in Falleti Ice Arena today with a "pop up store" for Foxprowl.

It's the second time he's set up a retail location in Falleti and he said later this month he will do what he's calling a "flash store" inside Record Revival on East Main Street.

Earlier this year, Hume shut down his permanent retail store at Jackson and Main, Batavia, but sees the trend for "pop up stores," which are common in metropolitan areas, as something he would like to see catch on Batavia.

August 19, 2017 - 12:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, business.

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It was Foxprowl Night at the Batavia Muckdogs game at Dwyer Stadium last night. Foxprowl co-Owner Bill Hume threw out the first pitch.

Above, Wade Webster as Deadpool and Brenden Gillard as Starlord.

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Joy Hume with ET and Alexa Myers, director of marketing for Dolce Panepinto, which also had a booth set up at the game.

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June 8, 2017 - 1:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, downtown, batavia, business, news.

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Saying it's a reality of business these days, Foxprowl Collectibles announced on Facebook that it is closing its downtown store, though the business will continue as an online-only business.

"This is by no means the business ending," Bill Hume said in the statement. "It is simply changing and adapting with the current state of retail (over 50 percent of U.S. retail sales now occur online)."

Hume, who operated the business with his wife, Joy, started Foxprowl as an online-only business and opened a store on Ellicott Street in 2010. They moved the store to Main and Jackson streets less than a year ago, in September 2016.

Foxprowl won the Chamber's "Entrepreneurial Business of the Year" award for 2016.

The store also operates an annual local comic and collectibles convention, Foxprowl Con. Hume said the convention will be on hiatus this year because of the business transition but will return in 2018.

The physical store location closing is effective July 1.

Photo: File photo of Joy and Bill Hume.

April 15, 2017 - 11:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, downtown, business.

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The Easter Bunny paid a visit to Foxprowl today. Owner Bill Hume sent in these pictures.

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March 3, 2017 - 8:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in Chamber Awards, batavia, business, news, Foxprowl Collectibles.

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You know you’ve wandered into a unique store when you see the nearly life-size Freddy Krueger standing, how else but menacingly, just inside the side entrance of the store at 97 Main St. in Batavia. On top of a nearby display case is another clue, the rubbery head of a one-of-a-kind beast with a gaping maw and toothy jowls. 

This is Foxprowl Collectables, of course, a place for sci-fi and pop culture collectors and the young at heart in the heart of the city, and Genesee County Chamber of Commerce’s 2016 Entrepreneurial Business of the Year. Owners Bill and Joy Hume will join other honorees Saturday night at the annual awards ceremony at the Quality Inn & Suites on Park Road.

Deborah Green, a friend of theirs who lives in East Pembroke, nominated the business. She says the Humes are community-oriented and their business brings in people from throughout Western New York to Batavia.

The Humes' enterprise is chock full of action figures, comic books -- 40,000 of them (wrapped in plastic, priced, alphabetized and in chronological order), toy collectibles and more, a place for tots and Boomers alike to look for many of their favorite characters and remember back in the day...

As a young man, Bill, a Batavia native, played in bands, did construction work and delivered furniture and appliances. Although he had collected toys all his life, he had no particular interest in business before starting Foxprowl as an ebay enterprise back in 1999. He had a lightbulb moment about the potential for making a living around his hobby and started buying toys in "lots" or quantities, then selling off excess while building his reserves. 

"Most people know more about their hobbies than they know about their jobs," Bill said. "So if your hobby is your job, you have more of a passion, more of a drive, and you're going to work 12-, 13-hour days because you enjoy it."

The first storefront opened in 2010 on Ellicott Street and then they relocated and opened Sept. 1 last year in the building at Jackson and Main streets.

"It's a new ballgame," Bill said of the new space. "It's a different demographic. (On Ellicott) it was more of a destination. Here there's more foot traffic, quadruple what it was. I'm looking forward to our first summer here, that's for sure."

Bill and Joy both say they are honored to be part of Batavia's business community and thankful for the recognition by the chamber for their hard work.

Joy said "drive, desire, diligence, setting goals, growth, planning the work and working the plan" are the keys to their success to date. And she gives a lot of credit to their employees and supporters.

"We have a great team that has grown with us and works right along with us and we are blessed with an abundance of family and friends who support us in so many ways," Joy said.

These include Tim Schiefer, Wayne Stahler, Marc Tillery and Bill Doetterl.

Stahler for the past two and a half years has run the online side of the business, handling Internet orders, shipping, tracking sales, complying with merchant rules for Amazon, eBay and their own e-commerce site on Big Commerce. His duties include working with a variety of distributors worldwide to get proper authorization to ship certain licensed goods. They only starting selling on Amazon last year and already Stahler said it is quickly reaching par with in-store sales.

Keeping the store itself organized and neat for finicky collectors and grandmothers seeking a special birthday gift for little Tommy is no small feat either.

"I try to keep it pretty shoppable," Bill said.

Glass cases house mint-condition items; on the walls and on countertops Star Wars is kept with Star Wars, likewise for G.I. Joe, KISS, Transformers, etc. There is a big bin for action figures.

"Kids love digging through there, rummaging, digging for the buried treasure buried at the bottom," Bill said.

He has some backstock, too.

In a small closet about 25 Millenium Falcon spaceships from Star Wars are stacked, variously equipped with their dozens of parts. Of those, he said he could maybe put together two whole spaceships with all the parts, in which case one would sell for $150-$160. The rarest bit is the Jedi Training Ball, which hangs down like a boxing bag. That alone sells for more than $20.

"Every mom vacuumed that up and so it's the part that's most often missing," Bill said.

Care to look through an old Atari magazine from the '70s? Ever seen uncut sheets of Three Stooges trading cards? Remember the Snoopy Sno-Cone machine? They are all there! Some people drive four hours just to get the special Japanese-made Godzilla figurines sold there, each exquisitely detailed and not cheap either.

But buying inventory and deciding well in advance of, say, a movie's release, how much of its corresponding merchandise to stock, can be tricky. Consumers are fickle and their memories are short. Despite all his acumen, Bill said it's still "a crapshoot."

A proven adjunct to the business is Foxprowl-Con, which brings together stars, a variety of clubs, artists, fandom and vendors on the weekend before Thanskgiving. It debuted at a local hotel in 2015 after 11 months of painstaking planning.

The first year there were 18 celebrities, dozens of vendors, dealers, crafters, artists, book sellers, and clubs like the Ghostbusters Club with its 20-foot inflatible marshmallow, plus interactive games, contests, experts panels -- like makeup artists and costumers, plenty of family fun all day long.

Putting the convention together was challenging but people loved it. Bill learned on the fly about third-party ticket sales, per diem payments, security, travel planning, promotions, advertising, and on and on. And he said he learned that it was important to treat every customer as royally as each star.

"Everybody is important," he said.

Joy said she thinks Foxprowl is one of Genesee County's coolest places; Foxprowl-Con is a labor of love. Both are places where families and fans can "geek out" and enjoy their favorite characters and artists and have a good time.

The Humes plan to keep having fun doing what they love.

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November 7, 2016 - 8:40am
posted by Genesee County ... in Foxprowl-Con, Foxprowl Collectibles, batavia, business, news.

Genesee County’s own Comic-Con style event is making its return to Batavia on Friday, Nov. 18 through Sunday, Nov. 20th. The 2nd annual Foxprowl-Con is where the world of comics, movies, television shows come together for a wonderful celebration of fun. The event will be taking place at the Quality Inn & Suites, 8250 Park Road in Batavia.

Foxprowl-Con is produced by Foxprowl Collectibles, 97 Main St. in Batavia. The store is a major destination for fans of vintage and new toys, figurines, ceramics and collectibles.

Foxprowl owner and event producer Bill Hume said, “Foxprowl-Con is a great place where parents and children can connect over sharing their love for comic books, television shows and certain movies. There are a lot of interactive activities for people to enjoy.”

He added, “A lot of people enjoy meeting the celebrities and attending the celebrity panels, where they do Q&As and tell behind the scene stories. People love browsing the large vendors room, browsing thousands of comics, toys, crafts and costumes. There are over 60 free panel discussions, cosplay contests, live music, games and more included in your admission. There’s something for everyone.”

The celebrity appearances are a big draw of Foxprowl-Con. Attendees can meet the special guests free of charge, with there being a fee for autographs. Special celebrities include: Ari Lehman, who was “Jason” in the first “Friday the 13th” movie. Lydia Criss, photographer and ex-wife of KISS drummer Peter Criss. Steve Geiger, Marvel Comics artist, Rashaad Santiago, Season 6 winner of the TV show “FaceOff.” Hanna Hall from “Forrest Gump” and Rob Zombie’s “Halloween.” Mark Dodson, voice actor from “Star Wars.” Kurt Lehner, character designer and animation artist for Disney.

The event times and admission are as follows: Friday, Nov. 18th – 4 to 9 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 19th -- 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 20th -- 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission for the days are: Friday $10, Saturday $20 and Sunday $15. Children 12 and under free with paid adult.

For up-to-date info, visit www.FoxprowlCon.com.

Visit www.VisitGeneseeNY.com to learn more...

November 4, 2016 - 4:36pm
posted by Mike Pettinella in news, Foxprowl-Con, Foxprowl Collectibles.

Press release:

Foxprowl Collectables, a toy and comic book store at 97 Main St, Batavia, is hosting its second Foxprowl-Con from Nov. 18-20 at Quality Inn & Suites on Park Road in Batavia.

The event will feature movie and comic book celebrities, games and activities, more than 60 panel discussions, life-size prop replicas, contests, and more.

Speakers and celebrity guests include:

-- Mark Dodson – Voice Actor from Star Wars: Return Of The Jedi and The Force Awakens, as well as the Gremlins movies

-- Ari Lehman – Jason Vorhees form the original Friday The 13th movie

-- Hanna Hall – Jenny from Forrest Gump (who said the famous line “Run Forrest run!”), and Rob Zombies’ Halloween

-- Rashaad Santiago – Faceoff season 6 champion

-- Bill Diamond – Puppeteer who worked on the Dark Crystal, the Muppets, Fraggle Rock, Sesame Street, and Dr Rock’s Dinosaur Adventures

-- Lydia Criss – Author of “Sealed With A KISS”, former wife of Peter Criss

-- Steve Geiger and Kurt Lehner – Marvel Comic artists

Entertainment and activities include:

-- Ookla the Mok: Rock Music for Nerds! Ookla the Mok have been playing catchy powerpop songs about Super-Heroes and Star Trek at science fiction and comic book conventions since the 90s. They wrote and performed the theme to Disney's Fillmore, and had Dr. Demento's most requested song of the year in 2012 and 2013. Song titles include favorites like "Tantric Yoda," "Welcome to the Con," and "Stop Talking About Comic Books or I'll Kill You"

-- Troupe Nisaa Bellydancers: This troupe dances various styles of bellydance from classic Egyptian style and tribal style with influences from other styles thrown into the mix. They will be performing and also hosting free mini-classes

-- Rochester Ghostbusters costuming group: Have you and your children’s pictures taken with the Ghostbusters, as well as life size props

-- Star Wars 501st costuming groups: Have your picture taken with various Star Wars characters from Garrison Excelsior, the North Ridge and the R2-D2 Builders Club

-- Ninja Turtles: (Friday only) Buffalos Best Turtles will pose with you for pictures

-- DMon Productions: Free Zombie Makeovers for children and adults

-- Experience Entertainment: Bringing life-size prop replicas of the Tardis from Doctor Who, a Weeping Angel, Silence, Empty Child, Michonne’s Walkers and more

-- Board Game playing: Collectors Inn will host an area of free board games to play

-- Large Dealer / Vendor Rooms: Many local and out of state artists and vendors will have their merchandise for sale, including toys, comics, jewelry, clothing, electronics, original artwork, prints and much more

All ages are welcome, and families are cncouraged. A schedule of events, activities, cosplay/costume contest information and panel discussions during the Con can be found at www.foxprowlcon.com.

Tickets are on sale now for $10-20 for a single day pass and $30 for the weekend. Kids 12 and under are free with paid adult.

VIP Passes are available for $80 and give the holder special privileges at the Con, including early admission to the event and to celebrity panels, express pass for all lines, and access to limited edition items.

Tickets can be purchased online or at the Foxprowl Collectables store at 97 Main St, Batavia.

October 10, 2016 - 3:31pm
posted by Billie Owens in hlom, Foxprowl Collectibles, news, Announcements, batavia.

Bill Hume, owner of Foxprowl in Batavia, will talk about popular culture collectables beginning at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 18, at the Holland Land Office Museum, 131 W. Main S., Batavia.
 
These aren't your grandfather's collectables. Hume will give an overview of collectables, which got their start in comic books and movies like Super Man, Bat Man, the X Men, Godzilla, Star Wars and Ghostbusters. You'll learn what's trending and what's not and what you wish your mom had not thrown out years ago. Hume will bring along plenty of his favorite items to show off.
 
This free presentation is open to the public. We do serve refreshments!
 
Reservations would be helpful, but not required. Phone 343-4727.
 
To see weird and wonderful collectables and more, visit Foxprowl at 97 Main St. in Batavia.
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