Puzzle Warehouse located at 655 Leffingwell Ave. is relatively new to Kirkwood, but has been selling puzzles online for nearly seven years now. It originated in Forest Lake, Minnesota, where it was run by Joseph Goetz and his wife. When the Goetzs decided to retire, they sold the company to St. Louis resident Brian Way. Way and his team redesigned the website and added a few new features, and before long the new Puzzle Warehouse was shipping puzzles all over the world. The inventory has nearly doubled in size over the last year, to almost 12,000 puzzles.
With 3,000 square feet stacked to the ceilings with jigsaw puzzles, the new Puzzle Warehouse store will be quite a treat for puzzle enthusiasts. It offers customers the convenience of being able to browse thousands of puzzles, and then take their purchases home to start working on immediately, rather than having to wait for shipping.
“We want to reach out to the local community, and give people the chance to come see our amazing collection for themselves,” Way said. “Who knows, you might even come across something you didn’t even know you were looking for.”
The front room of the new store is the kids’ section, an entire room dedicated to children’s puzzles, games and learning toys. From wooden peg puzzles, to giant floor puzzles, to map puzzles, the section features such respected brands as Geo Puzzles, Crocodile Creek and Ravensburger Kids. There also are lots of opportunities for hands-on “shopping” with the youngsters, not the least exciting of which is the Melissa and Doug wooden train set near the door.
Puzzles certainly aren’t only for the young, though. They are also quite popular with senior adults and retirees, who are more likely to have the time and attention spans to work on complicated 1,000+ piece puzzles. Jigsaw puzzles are a perfect choice for when the kids spend an afternoon with Grandma or Grandpa, and also make fantastic gifts.
As a way of getting involved in the community, the staff intend for Puzzle Warehouse to become a sort of haven for puzzle-lovers and hobbyists in the St. Louis area. They even hope to offer up the store as a place for puzzling groups or clubs to meet and work together on puzzles.
The grand opening of the new Puzzle Warehouse store will be on Saturday, October 30, from 10am – 2pm. There will be puzzle contests and giveaways for all ages, and plenty of opportunity to shop and socialize with other families and puzzle lovers. There will also be a food collection for the Circle of Concern to help feed hungry families in the St. Louis area. For details and directions, click here. Though festivities end at 2 p.m., the store will be open all day so customers are welcome to stop by later.