fbpx

Not All Heroes Wear Capes

In what some might consider a gratifying character arc, the owner of Docking Bay 94 had humble beginnings in the comic industry.

Under different ownership, Docking Bay 94 was John Miller’s go-to spot in 1998; it was where he got his weekly comic fix and even worked part time—first as an errand boy paid in store credit and access to new books before they were available for purchase.

“I’d pick up their books, bring them back to the store, and then I’d get the honor of opening them up and sorting them for inventory like a mule,” Miller says with a laugh. “And I was just so content to get store credit and access to the comics.”

John Miller

Miller’s positive outlook paid off. He eventually bought the store with the stock he’d earned working at Publix and made Docking Bay 94 what it is today—complete with a “Walking Dead”-themed restroom.

Miller has a lifelong love for comics. He started reading them as a child (he was a Marvel fan), and now, as the owner of Coconut Creek’s only comic book store, he shares that love with others. Miller also offers a free subscription service for patrons to order their books in advance and avoid the hassle of picking them up on release days.

“I love that young kids are discovering that you can play games with real books and be in a room and play,” Miller says, referring to a recent influx of young Dungeons and Dragons players, thanks to the Netflix TV series “Stranger Things.”

Playing Dungeons and Dragons

While the Coconut Creek resident’s love of comics is what got him started, it can sometimes lead to disappointment. “I just love the stories, I love the comics … I probably take it too personally,” Miller says. “I love the stuff so much that I feel like, sometimes, when the books and writers aren’t trying, I get mad.”

Miller’s frustrations with the comic book industry might explain why he’s trying to break into it himself. He’s working with James Michael Whynot, a published artist who teaches Docking Bay 94’s weekly “ ‘Whynot’ Learn to Draw” class, as a creator on some projects. Miller hopes to publish his own comic alongside Whynot and sell it in his store.

Along with the drawing class, Docking Bay 94 (the name is a “Star Wars” reference) hosts a weekly Comic Culture Club (known as C3) meetings—a comic book reading group that discusses the newest releases—as well as weekly roleplay game events.

These events are frequented by people from “all walks of life,” from police officers to veterinarians, attorneys and teachers.

“There’s definitely a sense of community here,” Miller says.

 

Come and Play

Docking Bay 94 hosts these weekly events.

Monday: Open gaming

Tuesday: “Whynot” Learn to Draw Class, 6 p.m.; Miniature Painters Club, 6 p.m.; Comic Culture Club (C3), 8 p.m.

Wednesday: New Comic Book Day

Thursday: Open Gaming

Friday: Friday Night Magic Standard Tournament, 7 p.m.

Saturday: Warhammer, 11 a.m.-close; Magic 101, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.

Sunday: Pokemon League Tournament, 11 a.m.

 

Docking Bay 94

Location: 7710 NW 56th Way, Suite 100

Contact: comicsandgames.com; 954.427.1694

You May Also Like

Live and Up Close: My Weekend Therapy

“I was going through a breakup, so I started going to a therapist and he said, ‘You do music, that’s your weekend therapy.’”

Live and Up Close: Ryan Hopkins

“I hope that when people see me perform they realize how much my heart is in it. I’ll put on the same show whether I’m playing to five people or 300.”

Healthcare Investor Hosts Fundraising Event for Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis

The evening will feature a Frank Sinatra impersonator, networking and a chance to raffle prizes from Amaira Med Spa & Surgical.

Quality Ingredients Made Legendary

Angelo Elia creates a restaurant empire.

Other Posts

Editor’s Letter: Staking Out the Middle Ground

The political partisanship in Florida is pretty stark these days. However, the career of John P. “Jack” Seiler is a reminder that wasn’t always the case. Seiler, who is featured on this month’s cover, served a key role as a fiscally conservative Democrat during his time in the Florida statehouse. Some people thought he was

Kevin Gale
Hit the Road? Not This Jack

Seiler has had a long and distinguished public service career serving South Florida.

Justin Weinstein Is on a Mission To Change the Attorney-Client Dynamic

A new brand movement – “The Law of We” – aims to foster proactive relationships between attorneys and their clients.

Editor’s Letter: Saluting a Good Friend

We will honor Kevin Kaminski’s legacy in all that we do.