Farmville Residents Say They Spotted Barbie!

April 28, 2024 / Lori Drake

Rumor has it that residents of Farmville saw a pink convertible driving through town the other day. The snazzy looking car pulled up to Vintage Point Toys and Collectibles on Main Street. Rumor also has it that Barbie and Ken visited the store to meet with their people, which included many Barbies, some Kens, and a few Midges and Skippers.

“I have more than 500 Barbie’s in the store,” says Wayne Dempsey, owner of the unique business establishment located at 3722 North Main Street. The store features a variety of antique toys, dolls, board games and books. “I’ve always carried Barbie dolls in the store but since the release of the Barbie movie, I’ve had more people come into the store, especially people from out of town who are looking to add to their collections.”

Ken, who likes swimming too, came along in 1961. He can be found at Vintage Point too wearing his red suit and red and white vertical striped shirt.

In the “Barbie” movie released last summer and directed by Greta Gerwig, Ken has several funny lines. Played by Ryan Gosling, Ken can be heard saying, “You know surfer is not even my job, and it’s not lifeguard… ….actually, my job, it’s just beach.” For Barbie, it’s more than “just beach.” Since she debuted 64 years ago, she has had more than 250 careers and traveled the world. Anyone who journeys to Vintage Point can find Thailand Barbie, Ireland Barbie and Australian Barbie. One day when I walked by the window at Vintage Point, I saw the old black case that I had as a child for storing my Barbie dolls and their clothes. A few days later, it had already sold. But there was the yellow box for Skipper, Barbie’s little sister, inside a glass case. Classic Barbie and Midge dolls also stood in the glass exhibit space dressed in evening gowns, career clothes and bathing suits. On top of the display area sat small packages of Barbie attire that could be bought separately to add to a collection.

“My wife, Christine, is sorting and organizing all the various pieces of clothing we have in the store, and then arranging them into individual sets,” Dempsey said. “Here is one with a graduation robe, mortar board, and chord.” Congratulations Barbie! From graduation to astronaut 13 years before women were admitted to the astronaut corps at NASA. Perhaps that’s why Barbie has been so popular over the years. With no voice but brought to life by millions of little girls across the country, she paved the way for social change. She embodied the dreams of little girls for their futures. Barbie dared to dream and so did we. She lived in our young lives and now resides in our memories.

Perhaps that is why stores like Vintage Point: Vintage Toys and Collectibles mean so much to us. Meandering down the aisles of the shop is like walking down memory lane. Whether it’s the old Lincoln Logs, GI Joe figures that our brothers had, or Barbie and Ken dolls, the past comes to life when we see these old favorite toys.

Vintage Point: Vintage Toys and Collectibles came to Farmville about a decade ago and was first located on West Wilson Street. But Wayne Dempsey needed more space, even before the Barbie craze, and when a facility became available on Main Street he moved to the new location. His parking spaces out front, made the perfect spot for Barbie to park her pink convertible and for residents of Farmville to park their cars before entering the story and taking a walk down memory lane.

*The inventory in the store may have changed since this story went to print.

Lori Drake
Author: Lori Drake