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'Mantique' store opens in Rock Co.

By Mark Koehn, mkoehn@wisctv.com
Published On: Dec 24 2013 06:51:33 AM CST
Updated On: Sep 19 2013 10:44:13 PM CDT

Mantiques

JANESVILLE, Wis. -

Let's say you're a guy and you like to collect stuff, but a regular antique store just doesn't do it for you. A new shop in downtown Janesville just might be the place for you.

Jason Allen collects stuff. It's in his blood. His grandparents had a booth in an antique store.

"By 10 years old, I would have my own space at their booth and I would sell comic books and sports cards," Allen said.

Real life got in the way, but Allen never stopped collecting stuff.

"It just got to be so much, it was 'well, I'll just open my own store,'" he said.

And so he did. The shop's name came to him while he and his wife were out antiquing one day.

"We were walking around the other antique shops. I'd be looking and you know looking around the whole store for one or two things I found interesting. Well, she goes, 'the problem is honey, you're looking for man-tiques,'" he said.

An antique shop for guys, Mantiques. Open since May, this guy-centric place is filled with something for everybody ... guy everybodys.

"It's like a big ol' man cave in here. Yes it is, yes it is. My wife has said that to me as well. She said, 'honey, you get to have the biggest man cave.,

Action figures and comic books. Vinyl records -- lots of vinyl records, the soundtrack of his life.

"Some of the old metal toys. The Nylons. The Tonkas. The Buddy Ells. Down this way we have some bar glasses, vintage ashtrays, bar trays. More, as you said, man cave. This is man cave stuff right here.  Man cave, yeah," he said. "People love video games. Atari."

Finding the stuff to fill the man cave is almost a full-time job in itself. Even his kids pitch in.

"So they're walking around and my daughter, who's now 8, will point to something and say, 'dad look, it's a rusty old can. You love rusty old cans' and I'll say, 'Yes. Yes, I do. Let me look at that quick,'" he said. "There's the toys from my childhood. Guys my age, we're now collecting again. We have a lot of fathers and sons come in. They bring in their kids and show them, 'hey I had that Optimus Prime. I had that Joker.'"

They also say...

"I had that," Allen said.

Mantiques is located on Milwaukee Street in downtown Janesville. It's open Wednesday through Sunday, and yes, women are welcome, as well.

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