South Minneapolis gift and record store Rock, Paper, Scissors is finally getting settled in its new Whittier home after moving plans were disrupted by the pandemic.
Couple Tes de Luna and Jason Hughes opened their first Minneapolis store at 48th & Chicago in 2018, but when their lease was ending and they saw the former Cliche space being advertised at 24th & Lyndale, they jumped at the opportunity to be closer to their home.
The plan had been to open their new location in mid-March, but coronavirus-related retail closures statewide put a hold on that. The shop opened on May 27, only to board up its windows two days later as civil unrest swept over the city following the killing of George Floyd.
In its first week back, Rock, Paper, Scissors donated 10% of all sales to local nonprofit Black Table Arts.
So far, business has been better than expected, Hughes said, with people coming by to browse around and check out records and other goods. Locals have been supportive, and some have remarked how happy they are to be able to browse through a store again.
“All things considered, we’re doing OK,” Hughes said.
De Luna and Hughes met in Seattle, where they had shops next door to each other: He ran a record store; she had a boutique and gallery that sold clothing, jewelry and gifts made by independent designers. At Rock, Paper, Scissors, they’ve combined those goods under one roof. The store has a new local artist featured each month on its wall space and (in non- pandemic times) at an art reception party. Creative workshops and art classes for adults and kids are also offered at Rock, Paper, Scissors, though those are happening virtually for now.
Like other retailers, Rock, Paper, Scissors is sanitizing as much as possible, requiring customers wear masks and observe social distancing. No more than four shoppers are allowed in the space right now. The store is offering curbside pickup for goods and records. Hughes said the new Other Lives record, “For Their Love,” and local group Muun Bato’s self-titled debut release are some of his favorite new vinyls.
“Everyone’s just got to be careful,” Hughes said.