Lionel Celebrates 115th Anniversary with Boxcar Design Contest

LionelLionel is giving fans a chance to design a new boxcar in celebration of the company’s 115th anniversary. The winning boxcar design in the Design Your Own Boxcar contest will be produced and featured in Lionel’s Fall 2015 Signature Edition catalog.

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Disguise Receives Seasonal Vendor of the Year from Target

DisguiselogoDisguise Inc., the Halloween costume division of Jakks Pacific Inc., received the 2014 Vendor of the Year Award for Seasonal from Target. The Target Vendor of the Year Awards distinguish a select group of vendor partners each year based on certain performance and relationship criteria.

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New Look for Junie B. Jones Series to Roll Out This May

JBJonesThis spring, Random House Books for Young Readers is rolling out a new cover look for the Junie B. Jones series by Barbara Park. All 28 books, as well as the interactive journal, will feature the new branded look, which includes colorful polka dots and a new title font. The iconic illustrations by Denise Brunkus will remain the same.

The re-branded series launch will be supported by a major marketing and publicity campaign. It will include the Laugh Yourself Silly with Junie B. School Campaign (formerly the Junie B. Jones Stupid Smelly Bus Tour), which will bring Junie B. and her bus driver, Mr. Woo, live and person to schools in May.

Border Agents Seize Undeclared Tobacco Amid Load of Toys

As reported by the Associated Press, U.S. border agents found $300,000 worth of loose-leaf tobacco hidden in a truck hauling toys.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said Thursday that agents made the discovery at the Lewiston-Queenston bridge in western New York in December and that the load was formally seized this week.

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Port of Long Beach Seminar Considers Key Issues for Holiday Shipping Season and Beyond

TIALogoThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) will host an educational seminar at the Port of Long Beach on May 21, intended to help toy companies gain a better understanding of what caused the West Coast port delays—and to provide information for making logistical decisions going forward.

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ASTRA’s Record-Breaking Marketplace to Feature 89 First-Time Exhibitors

ASTRAlogoAccording to the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA), 89 toy manufacturers will be participating for the first time in its exhibit hall at ASTRA’s upcoming Marketplace & Academy. The exhibit hall, which will represent ASTRA’s largest ever, includes a total of 15 percent more exhibitors than last year.

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TIA Promotes Toy Safety and Value of Play at PEM Assembly

TIA.SafetyThe Toy Industry Association (TIA) was an exhibitor and supplied medical professionals with information about toy safety and the developmental benefits of play at the annual Advanced Pediatric Emergency Medicine (PEM) Assembly. This year’s event took place from March 24 to 25. The assembly provides more than 450 participants with updates on the latest and most innovative developments in pediatric emergency medicine, as well as opportunities to network with others who are committed to child health, safety, and well being.

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My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Launches Season Five on April 4

Discovery Family and Hasbro Studios will kick off the fifth season of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic with a two-part premiere on April 4.

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Sesame Workshop Makes Executive Appointments as Part of Reorganization

Sesame WorkshopSesame Workshop CEO Jeffrey Dunn has appointed four to his executive team as part of the broad reorganization he is undertaking six months into his tenure. The effort realigns Sesame Workshop’s strategy and structure to better deliver on its mission to help kids grow smarter, stronger, and kinder.

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Hamleys Opens Second-Largest Toy Store in the World in Moscow

Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg

As reported by Reuters, the British toy store Hamleys opened the second-largest toy store in the world on Tuesday in central Moscow. The new shop covers roughly 6,750 square meters, or about 73,000 square feet, and features a rocket made of nearly two million Lego bricks.

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