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Being a superhero in New York City is easy. Just walk into the Brooklyn Superhero Supply in Park Slope, 5th Avenue between 5th and 6th street, and walk away with a new cape, a grappling hook, a tin of antimatter, or even a new identity. And if you need a partner, Brooklyn Superhero Supply also runs a sidekick placement service. And like any good superhero, the store itself has a secret second identity.

Brooklyn Superhero Supply is the brainchild of acclaimed novelist Dave Eggers and educator Ninive Calegari who founded 826, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting under-resourced students ages 6 to 18 with their creative and expository writing skills and to helping teachers inspire their students to write. When they founded the original 826 chapter in San Francisco, the building they chose for their tutoring center was allocated for retail. The law required them to either open a retail store or take their offices elsewhere. Dave and Ninive chose the latter and invented the Pirate Supply Store that not only helped them get past the restriction but also helped attract kids and raise funds for the organization by selling pirate wares and souvenirs. When Dave and Ninive opened the New York chapter of 826, the superhero theme was the obvious choice given the city’s history with vigilante.

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© Amusing Planet, 2015.



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