Saturday, January 16, 2021
officially closed ...
EVG contributor Stacie Joy spotted owner Pamela Pier (below left) and "first and last employee" Naomi Machado inside the shop yesterday...
In addition, whenever the two visit the shop, they'll put out a few freebies, including some books and other smaller items, on the sidewalk.
Friday, December 11, 2020
Back on Oct. 8, we had the scoop that Pamela Pier was retiring after 37 years of running the toy store Dinosaur Hill on Ninth Street just east of Second Avenue... and that neighbor Veselka would be taking over the lease for the storefront... all this came courtesy of East Village-based freelance writer Linda Dyett, who contributed the byline to us.
Linda explored the long history between Dinosaur Hill and Veselka for a detail-rich article that is now online at The New York Times. (Find it here. It will be in Sunday's print edition.)
Here's more about what to expect once Veselka expands into the former Dinosaur Hill:
[T]here will be more indoor seating, more wall space for the murals by the house artist Arnie Charnick, a larger kitchen and a sushi bar-style showcase for the team of women who make its pierogi by hand.
Standing in another section of Veselka’s new space will be a gift from its soon-to-be former next-door neighbor: a rocket-ship gumball machine. The area will be called Dinosaur Dining.
Thursday, December 3, 2020
was all set to close at the end of November.
However, as the sign in the window here at 306 E. Ninth St. just east of Second Avenue shows... the children's toy, game and book shop extended the closing sale through Sunday — with "almost everything" at 50-percent off until then. Dinosaur Hill's hours are noon to 5 p.m.
As previously noted, Pamela Pier, the shop's tireless owner, has decided to retire after 37 years in business.
Moving forward, next-door neighbor Veselka will eventually move into the Dinosaur Hill space. Meanwhile, Dinosaur Hill employee Karen McDermott and her husband, Jason McGroarty, opened toy store the March Hare down the block early last week. Pier is said to serve as a consultant for the store.
Thanks to Lola Sáenz for the photo!
Thursday, October 29, 2020
Per the shop's Instagram account, they will carry "Puppets, Marionettes, Board Games, Puzzles, Stuffed Toys and More!"
The shop will be carrying on for Dinosaur Hill, whose owner, Pamela Pier, decided to retire after 37 years. Dinosaur Hill will be closing at the end of November, as we first reported here. Veselka plans to expand into the toy store's space in the future.
Current Dinosuar Hill employee Karen McDermott and her husband, Jason McGroarty, will be running the shop — with Pier on board as consultant. They plan to maintain Dinosaur Hill's legacy — on the same block, no less.
Thanks to Steven for the photo and tip!
Previously on EV Grieve:
Thursday, October 8, 2020
Text and photos by Linda Dyett
The jam-packed children's toy, game and book shop Dinosaur Hill, a neighborhood institution since 1983, will be closing at the end of November. Pamela Pier, the shop's tireless owner, has decided to retire.
This little-shop-that-could — many of its items under $5 — set the pace for the many of the visionary, iconoclastic stores that have opened on the East Village's side streets in the decades that followed.
A final storewide sale is already under way — 25 percent off through the end of October, 40 percent off in November.
Veselka, Dinosaur Hill's equally well-known next-door neighbor, will be taking over its lease, and expanding into the space here at 306 E. Ninth St. just east of Second Avenue.Pier, who trained as an artist and early-childhood educator, had a specific goal with all the old-fashioned wooden wheel-y vehicles, dexterity-improving games, science kits, pick-up sticks, xylophones, art supplies, soap bubbles, erector sets, hobby horses, books, stuffed orangutans, puppets, marionettes, a multiethnic range of dolls, and, as an afterthought, wearables, in her inventory.
She wanted "to keep kids out of cyber space and engaged in 3D activities." Some items are produced by local artists and artisans. Other goods come from small-scale companies around the United States. The hand-carved cherry wood teething rings and rattles? They're from a supplier in Texas while the bass wood alphabet blocks, available in a variety of languages, are handcrafted in Grand Rapids, Mich. And still others come from around the world: marionettes from the Czech Republic … clothing items from India and a women's craft co-op in Ghana.
When Pier finally decided it was time to retire, she contacted Veselka to see if there might be interest in its expanding into the space that Dinosaur Hill occupies. The answer was yes! (This is not the first such negotiation Pier has had with Veselka. Some years back, she moved from another storefront in the same building to accommodate an earlier expansion the restaurant made.)
Meanwhile, her employee Karen McDermott and McDermott's husband, Jason McGroarty, plan to maintain Dinosaur Hill's legacy by opening their own East Village children's shop — with Pier on board as consultant. If the right storefront opens up, they’re interested.
But there's no doubt Pamela Pier and her truly unique Dinosaur Hill will be sorely missed.
Linda Dyett is an East Village-based freelance writer and editor who’s been published in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Monocle, New York magazine and — back when glossy magazines were still magazines — Allure, Glamour, etc.