CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Several businesses have closed their doors for good throughout the pandemic, but a unique sports shop opened in Charlotte's South End in the hopes of luring in fans old and new alike.
"It's kind of a nostalgia thing that's come back, especially during COVID," said Mike Martin.
Martin, along with Jordan Edwards, opened One Stop Sports on Saturday.
It was the vision of Brent Schepel, a Charlotte graduate and social media influencer who collects cards.
"Back in the day, cards were a big deal, especially for me growing up," said Edwards.
They're modernizing the sports card trading business with a shop, where sports fans can buy or trade rare cards, enjoy watching games, and even grab a drink while hanging around.
"Now that we can get back in person together, people are craving to meet people, shake their hand, do a trade with a card," Martin said. "Like I keep saying, it's about bringing the community together."
Earlier this year, a Federal Reserve study found an estimated 800,000 businesses closed in the U.S. during the past year, about 200,000 more than usual.
The owners of One Stop Sports said it was easy to open a sports business during the pandemic.
"This was something that was created during COVID. A lot of industries have increased sales because of COVID," Edwards said.
They hope to continue to be one of those industries, bringing in collectors and fans to an old pastime made new again in the Queen City.