Downtown Upland is home to a quaint little toyshop and arcade by the name of Outatime 80’s Retroshop, coined after the hit 80’s movie Back to the Future, and the license plate featured on the hero vehicle–the Delorean.
I stumbled upon Outatime 80’s Retroshop in early 2020 during my first trip to Upland, CA. The entrance is flanked with a large “BLOCKBUSTER RENTAL” sign and a cardboard He-Man and Skeletor standing in the window.
Skeletor and He-Man greeting crew
When you walk inside the shop, you are greeted by an array of toys and merchandise based on movies and cartoons from the 80’s. Along the black walls are props from movies such as The Ghostbusters, Karate Kid and Gremlins.
On the main wall are pegs of action figures, much like a scene you would see walking down the aisles of Toys R Us, Target or Montgomery Ward in 1985.
Stepping further into the shop, you’ll discover a dark room lit by colored lights, a vast array of arcade cabinets and a TV playing 80’s music videos on loop. This room is the arcade and while shopping at Outatime, you’ll most likely here a song by Rick Astley, Weird Al or Bon Jovi.
The arcade has roughly 50 games and is available to play by the hour for a nominal fee, and is home to some of my favorite titles: Street Fighter 2, Mortal Kombat and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. And if you get hungry or thirsty, there are movie and video game themed candies and beverages to refuel with.
I’m confident I can kick your ass in Mortal Kombat 2
Despite being about an hour’s drive outside of LA, Outatime 80’s Retroshop has been a regular hangout spot for me on the weekends. During my frequent visits and lengthy chats with the owner, I discovered both he and I are from the same era and are roughly the same age. And while I grew up in the midwest, and he grew up in Southern California, we share a very similar mindset with regards to not only the 80’s, toys and movies–but life as well. One area in which we disagree on however is who has the best fried chicken. He likes Cane’s Chicken, whereas I prefer the superior Popeye’s.
Having a store like Outatime, that’s purely driven by a passion and love for the 80’s is a rarity these days. I appreciate a place like this even exists, and in efforts to show my support, I put together a handful of videos to help promote it on Instagram.
So if you’re a fan of the 80’s and are looking for entertaining content to take you back, check out some of the videos on Instagram. I’ll post one of them below, as well. And if you happen to be in Los Angeles, why not head out to Outatime 80’s Retroshop and experience the joys, and the toys, of the 80’s for yourself.