Variety Product sales Tribute

A more recent discovery by me was a file folder containing the paperwork belonging to Variety Product sales, a distribution firm in the 1970's in Ontario, Canada. Seeing as the company is very familiar to me (i worked there for a time) I thought I'd layout some of it's history as well as present some of it's very cool vintage snapshots.

VPS is what the business would call a "rack Jobber" essentially someone who maintained stores in the convenience channel with essentials such as hardware and house wares. Started in 1967, VPS soon branched out to toys and gifts under their "Toy Rack" banner. The Toy Rack sign's had an obvious R Crumb "Keep on Trucking" influence to them and I'd pay money to get my hands on one.

"Toy Rack was a roaring success and the program was placed across Ontario in "Mac's Milk" stores as well as chains such as Avondale and the many "Mom and Pop" operations that still peppered the landscape in the 1970's.

Among the products in the Toy Rack roster? Mego Action Jackson, Lincoln Monsters, Viewmasters, Mego Planet of the Apes General Urko (and only General Urko for some odd reason), Matchbox cars, Barton Green Avenger Water Pistols, Aurora Comic Scenes Model Kits, Matell L'il Kiddles, Mego American West, Maddie Mod, Parker Brothers games and a great deal more.

VPS was sold in the early eighties to another toy distributor that's still around today. I got to visit the warehouse before it closed it's doors, unfortunately for me, I left the box of "remainders" (some carded Lincoln Monsters, Action Jacksons and Apes) in the bathroom. The building became a Baptist Church, a Chocolate Factory and is now an Upholstery company, I always wanted to ask if they still have that box of toys.

Below are some exclusive shots from the VPS showroom and some truly vintage store displays, more to come when i find the "Scrounging time"

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