Momma Tried Sports Cards store now open in Avon

Co-owners Brian and Gretchen Lonsway are hosting the card event on July 1, which is also the opening day of their new trading card store, Momma Tried Sports Cards, 35840 Chester Road in Avon. (Martin McConnell – “Morning News”)

Selling trading cards is Brian Lonsway's family business.

On July 1, Lonsways officially opened Momma Tried Sports Cards at 35840 Chester Road in Avon with his wife and partner, Gretchen, and their 2-year-old daughter, Kora.

Brian Lonsway said the store will serve as Momma Tried's second location and flagship store at 5500 Milan Road in Sandusky.

“I was working at Ford in Louisville; I was transferring school and coming home, and I told my mom that when I came home, I was going to open a card shop,” he said. “I’d been working hard all summer to prepare, and my mom just wanted me to just be an engineer or something.”

But, Lonsway said, the store was successful and remains open to this day.

When the Lonsway family decided to relocate and put down roots in Avon, they decided to open a second store in 2024.

“We met five years ago at Avon Lake,” Longsway said of his wife. “We really like this area and there are no card shops in Avon, Avon Lake, Bay (Village) or Rocky River.

“I think it's a really nice area. (It's weird) they don't have shops.

Lonsway said the decision to open the store in Avon was also a response to the fresh market.

The two finalists were Avon or Asheville, North Carolina, neither of which had a trading card store of any kind but the family wanted to stay close to home, he said.

“We also see a need in this area,” said Gretchen Longsway. “There’s Tabletop (in Cleveland), there’s Immortals (in Rocky River), and there are other places around that offer games.

“But, they don’t really have (the sports cards).”

Longsway said the new store is far from his first time selling player cards.

As a child, he said, he sold cards at a stall at Milan's annual Melon Festival.

“I actually ran a card shop when I was a kid, about 8 to 13 years old,” Lonsway said. “You grow up and do your own thing, but I got back into the industry 10 or 12 years ago and opened a card shop in Amherst.”

Momma Tried also carries some playing cards for competitive card games.

He said Pokémon cards are selling well in Avon as area schools and libraries grow their Pokémon clubs.

“I've been playing Pokémon Red and Blue since I was a teenager, and I've been a nerd,” said Gretchen Longsway. “Video games, I love them all.

“(Bryan) prefers sports. Different schools here have Pokémon clubs.

It is hoped that the stores will remain open long enough for the family's only child, Kora Lonsway, to take over the family business if she wishes.

Brian Lonsway pointed out that the family still needs to do some work in order to stay in business for another 16 years.

“We have an office for our daughter,” he said. “We just got our daughter into day care, (so) if you come here on Tuesday and Thursday, there's going to be a two-year-old little girl with blond hair.

“All she's doing now is smearing stuff on the cabinets, so we'll see how that goes later.”

“If she's interested (as a teenager), I'll keep it open.”

For more information, visit the store's Facebook page, Momma Tried Sports Cards.

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