Comic shop owners expand with mini golf, haunted houses, and more


Jupiter Comics and Collectibles co-owners and brothers Zack and Joshua Bicknell are taking their business to new heights with a massive expansion.

After being located inside a small space in a strip center on Poplar Avenue in Collierville for the past three years, the Bicknells decided move to Moscow, Tenn., where their 20-acre property will include a larger comic shop, the Jupiter Café, an arcade, party rooms, a 16-seat theater room, and outdoor patios as well as a mini-golf course, a haunted corn maze, haunted forest and haunted houses.

Related: "Jupiter Comics brings superheroes to the suburbs"

They purchased the property two years ago.

“With 20 acres out here, we’re going to be able to offer so much more than we would in just one little building in Collierville,” said Zach Bicknell.

“We originally planned to rent the building next to us in Collierville but couldn’t work out a deal with our landlord. And we had this piece of property off of Highway 57 that was initially going to be used for a haunted house park, so we decided why not put the comic shop, restaurant and arcade out here too.”

With the goal of becoming a destination for birthday parties and gatherings of all kinds, the Bicknells designed a barnyard-themed mini golf course, along with party rooms, a 16-seat theater, and a full-scale arcade.

“We have it set up so people can rent it out for sporting events, and a few fire departments have already contacted us about having Christmas parties,” said Bicknell. “And for children’s parties, we invested in five bounce houses and big slip and slides that parents can rent out.”

Behind the main building is a cityscape for children to play within, and parents can sit on the back porch to watch them play. A haunted house and forest, to open next fall, will be at the back of the property with a corn maze on the side of the property.

“As we get money in from those businesses, we plan to add one or two haunted houses every year because we have the land for them,” said Bicknell. He attended Disney’s college intern program at Disneyworld in Orlando in 2011 and learned how to manage a theme-park styled business before opening his own comics business in 2014, he said.

The former Jupiter Comics location included a smaller version of the Jupiter Café, but the new incarnation will feature an all-new menu and a much larger kitchen. All food will be handmade, including burgers, pizza, Philly cheesesteak sandwiches, breakfast items, ice cream, fudge, fried Twinkies and Oreo’s, fried pickles and green tomatoes, a children’s menu and fresh baked, decorated cakes for birthday parties.

“We love comics, and my brother has always wanted to be involved in the restaurant business,” said Bicknell. “The big dream is to have a haunted house theme park in the back. There aren’t many places in Memphis that perfect haunted houses and scare stuff. With this property we can hit everything instead of just one or two things.”

Jupiter’s comic store is open now, and a grand opening for the café and other parts of the property is anticipated for November.

Read more articles by Michael Waddell.

Michael Waddell is a native Memphian who returned to Memphis several years ago after working for nearly a decade in San Diego and St. Petersburg, Fla., as a writer, editor and graphic designer. His work over the past few years has been featured in The Memphis Daily News, Memphis Bioworks Magazine, Memphis Crossroads, the New York Daily News and the New York Post. Contact Michael.
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