New York -- Venerable
downtown Manhattan A/V retailer J&R Music & Computer World has added
a new little one to the family.
J&R Jr., a new
15,000-square-foot "super boutique" described as "a one-stop
shopping and social destination for kids and parents" celebrated its grand
opening at 1 Park Row, on the second floor of J&R Computer World's City
Hall-facing storefront on Monday.
The new outlet, the
brainchild of executive VP Jason Friedman and his wife Danielle, boasts a
highly curated merchandise mix of parenting essentials ranging from strollers
and car seats, to toys, games, furniture, musical instruments, crafts and books,
as well as several dedicated walls and displays for electronic toys, gaming
consoles, kids' media players, tablets, A/V baby monitors and other small
electronics and housewares.
Interactive displays are
numerous, as are play areas and activity stations for kids of all ages.
ceremony attracted a host of local New York politicians and press, and included
comments by J&R co-founder (and Jason's mother) Rachelle Friedman, Manhattan
Borough president Scott Stringer, Manhattan Councilwoman Margaret Chin, Jason
The opening ceremony
followed a soft opening over the weekend that included musical performances by
popular childrens' entertainers such as Laurie Berkner and Dan Zanes, among
A proclamation from New
York Mayor Michael Bloomberg was read aloud by Friedman, declaring Feb. 13
"J&R Jr. Day" in New York City. The timing of the Monday morning
opening was not accidental, as International Toy Fair kicked off in the
city. A reception for Toy Fair attendees was held that evening.
Freidman, who launched
and ran J&R's e-commerce site for his parents, said the concept for the
store came to him when his first child was born a few years ago, and he found
himself and his wife "completely overwhelmed by the big-box baby supply
chains." He added that all the merchandising for the store was done by him
and his wife, along with his newly formed merchandising team.
"We approached it
as parents first," he said. "We were very selective with our mix and
wanted to keep it simple, interactive and fun from a shopping standpoint. We
knew which products worked for us and wanted to make it easy for new parents."
The name, J&R Jr.,
came naturally, as it has been Jason's nickname for as long as he's worked for
The newest expansion of
J&R's string of storefronts, which takes up an entire city block in the
shadow of the site of the former World Trade Center complex, serves a rapidly
growing residential area of Manhattan. Friedman cited Downtown Alliance
statistics illustrating that residency has more than doubled in Lower Manhattan
since 9/11, and continues to grow faster than any other region of New York
"When you step through the doors of J&R Jr. you will be entering a
kids zone -- a judgement-free world where you can escape the busy world
outside, and once more become a kid again ... whether its finding the missing
piece to a puzzle, erecting a looming tower of blocks, serving tea to the
princess, or slaying a virtual fire-breathing dragon. Everyone will be welcomed
here and we will be ready to assist you in finding that elusive baby gift or
the latest essentials for child-proofing your home."