When you were a kid or teenager, what were some of your favorite places to hang out around the Quincy/Hannibal area? Do any of those places still exist? 

Because I was a big comic book fan, I spent a lot of time at the local comic book shops. In Quincy, I went to both Midwest Comics on State Street, and Gem City Coin and Supply on Maine. In Hannibal, I was a regular at Tolivar's Book Exchange and MAW's Get-a-Hobby on Broadway. I was at MAW's Get-a-Hobby a bunch. They were in business when I got my driver's license. In fact, if it wasn't the first place I went, it was one of the first.

Doc Holliday once told me about an arcade that used to be in Hannibal, but I don't have any recollection of it. I do remember having a lot of fun at Aladdin's Castle in the mall. That one's still there!

Aladdin's Castle Quincy Illinois
Kurt Parsons

I went to the movies a lot when I was a kid. My parents took me to the State Theater when I was really young, and the Quincy Mall theater. In Hannibal, we would go to the theater at Northport Plaza. There used to only be three screens at that theater, and I remember it being a big deal when they expanded to five.

Speaking of movies, what about the old video stores? They ended up sort of becoming hangout spots, if inadvertently. You'd always run into friends at those places. I think Great River Video was the place I remember going to first, but there were several video rental businesses in the 80s and 90s, and then, of course, there was Blockbuster.

What about places that weren't businesses? In Hannibal, cruising Broadway on the weekends used to a big deal, but I don't think that's been a "thing" for some time. In the summer, we used to hang around downtown during National Tom Sawyer Days, either in the park, or at the carnival, or just walking around. In middle school and high school, football and basketball games were a lot fun to attend.

These are just a few of the places for me that immediately come to mind. I could probably go on all day if I kept at it. What about you? Where were some of your favorite hangout spots when you were growing up?

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