The Town Board Shop in Isanti couldn’t have come at a better time.
With the opening of the new wakeboard park this past year, the winter season on its way, the proximity to local skate parks and the fact that the nearest retailer for boarding activities is 40 minutes away, Jason Lloyd and Bryan Paz felt Isanti was the ideal place for such a shop.
Lloyd has been boarding for 12 years, and Paz more than 25. The two met when they were young and became lifetime friends, skateboarding and snowboarding together. Lloyd also competes with the United States of America Snowboarding Association and boarder cross, which he described as moto-cross for snowboarders.
The two were sitting in a lift char at Trollhaugen, where Lloyd works for ski patrol, and Lloyd commented to Paz, “You know, we should really do a shop.”
Lloyd and Paz saw a need for a shop that offered snowboards, wakeboards, skateboards and long boards (a longer skateboard) in the area.
Both men have a skateboard company online called Monster Lab, which they have owned for about a year. However, Lloyd said, they wanted merchandise to be available immediately to boarders. As Lloyd put it, children want to be able to touch their new items right away, without the suspense of waiting a few weeks or more for their purchases. Also, Lloyd added, parents don’t want to have to drive to Blaine or Anoka, which are two of the closest places that have such stores.
Paz said the two felt Isanti was the best place for the store, especially after Vision Wake Parks opened last spring.
“We figured that’s it, we have to do it now,” Paz said.
Isanti’s Economic Development Director Sean Sullivan said “it makes sense” to have a boarding shop in an area, with all the offerings.
After a bit of a hurdle trying to find a location, the two moved into the old Caribbean Tan shop at 106 Main St. E.
The Town Board Shop has a wide variety of boards, as well as gear, clothing, shoes and recreational magazines. Paz said they will always have a wide variety of products that are also inexpensive.
Lloyd said they hope to “become a staple in Isanti,” creating youth programs and getting involved in the community. The two also want to expand Monster Lab’s offerings while keeping it local.
The Town Board Shop’s hours are noon to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays.