Build-A-Bear Workshop Gets into the Christmas Spirit, Launches Holiday App, Lets New Reindeer Reign

BuildABear.CometReindeerBuild-A-Bear Workshop Inc. has transformed its stores into Santa’s Workshops, is introducing eight reindeer, and will extend play beyond plush with the launch of an exclusive holiday app, Santa’s Merry Mission.

By visiting the company’s Team Santa site, children and guests can take a personality quiz to determine which of the eight reindeer is their favorite, and then follow steps to create their very own plush toy. Reindeer selections include Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen. A special medallion comes with each reindeer and unlocks fun features in the app, including a stable, outfits, games, and more.

BuildaBearappOther features on the app include “Santa’s Merry Mission,” a new family Christmas story that tells the tale of how Santa partnered with Build-A-Bear Workshop this season; a sing-a-long to “Reindeer Bells” performed by Brandon Bassir, and more. The Santa’s Merry Mission app can also be downloaded for free on iTunes or Google Play.

Build-A-Bear Workshop, Toys for Tots Join Team Santa for the Holidays

BABW_NewCircleLogoBuild-A-Bear Workshop will launch a national Stuffed with Hugs event November 14 to 16, where guests will be invited to join Team Santa and make a special bear for free to donate to Toys For Tots. The store has supported The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation for the seventh year in a row during the holiday season, donating $7.8 million worth of toys.

Also through December 14, Build-A-Bear Workshop guests can visit any store nationwide to make or donate new, unwrapped toys for local children in need. The company will match each donation up to 20,000 with a Build-A-Bear stuffed animal. Donations can also be made at checkout in stores and online at buildabear.com through December 31.

Macy’s Holiday Arcade to Offer Toys from Build-A-Bear, Madame Alexander, Gund, and More

MacysLogoMacy’s will be introducing the Holiday Arcade, in-store gifting shops offering customers an eclectic assortment of distinctive and playful options for their holiday shopping lists. These shops will launch at six Macy’s locations between late October and mid-November:

The Holiday Arcade at five locations including Macy’s South Coast Plaza, Macy’s Union Square, Macy’s State Street, Macy’s Herald Square, and Macy’s Center City will be home to exclusive Build-A-Bear Workshop shop-in-shops. Visitors will have the opportunity to customize Build-A-Bear stuffed animals, as well as licensed products such as figures from Disney’s Frozen and Marvel’s superheroes. [Read more...]

Build-A-Bear Workshop Opens Pop-Up Shop in Times Square

Times_Square_Grand_Opening_PhotoJust in time for the holidays, Build-A-Bear Workshop has opened a new pop-up workshop in Times Square, New York. Primly located at 1619 Broadway, this new shop is officially open to the public after a ceremonious ribbon cutting by Build-A-Bear CEO Sharon John Tuesday morning.

The new store celebrates the arrival of Olaf, Elsa Bear, and Anna Bear, merchandise that is exclusively available at Build-A-Bear Workshops.

The first 200 guests to arrive were invited to build a “Stuffed with Hugs” bear that will be donated to a local charity.

Build-A-Bear Workshop Opens New Store at FAO Schwarz Fifth Avenue

BABW_NewCircleLogoBuild-A-Bear Workshop has announced plans to open a shop within the FAO Schwarz Fifth Avenue flagship store. Opening in early November, the new location is the first Build-A-Bear Workshop store-within-a-store in the U.S.

While visiting the store, guests can participate in the hands-on Build-A-Bear Workshop stuffed animal-making experience, which has been enhanced with digital technology. The company worked with Microsoft, Samsung, and other leading technology companies to create the store design, which includes:

  • A touchscreen storefront display that allows guests to interact with the brand by playing and exploring the latest Build-A-Bear Workshop furry friend collections.
  • An interactive Love Me station that enables guests to customize their stuffed animals by giving personality traits to the red satin heart, which is added to their animal at the Stuff Me station.
  • A Hear Me station where popular music and special sounds can be added. Guests can also record their own voice to further personalize their stuffed animal.
  • The Fluff Me station where customers can play with a sensory effects digital bath tub with virtual bubbles.
  • The Name Me station, which allows guests to reveal the personality traits and customized features that were added to their stuffed animal throughout the bear-making process. At Name Me, guests also create a one-of-a-kind birth certificate.

Build-A-Bear Expands the My Little Pony Collection

20424_20333_20401_20401_20425Build-A-Bear Workshop is expanding its My Little Pony collection with the launch of Princess Twilight Sparkle under license from Hasbro Inc. Princess Twilight Sparkle and her trusted assistant Spike the Dragon are now available at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores throughout North America and online at buildabear.com.

The company’s licensing relationship with Hasbro allows guests to engage with the characters and uniquely personalize the ponies. Guests can complete the signature look for Princess Twilight Sparkle with a variety of fashions including a My Little Pony Coronation Cape, Gold Bow Flats, a My Little Pony Friendship is Magic theme song that can be added to any stufffed animal, and a Rainbow Brush.

Build-A-Bear Workshop Teams Up with the Smurfs

SmurfetteCGIBuild-A-Bear Workshop will introduce its second collection of Smurf characters in honor of Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation’s The Smurfs 2, in theaters July 31. Find the newest friends from the film, Vexy and Hackus, joining Smurfette on their latest adventure at Build-A-Bear Workshop and online at buildabear.com.

To celebrate the Smurfs’ arrival, Build-A-Bear Workshop is holding an #IlovemySmurf Instagram contest. Guests are invited to take a picture of their Smurfs plush from Build-A-Bear Workshop and share it on Instagram using the hashtag #IlovemySmurf in their Instagram photo. Images will be judged on a set of criteria and the five best photos will win. Winners will receive a $50 Bear Buck$ gift card. The contest runs from July 12- July 21.

Make-your-own Smurfette, Vexy, and Hackus can be outfitted in a variety of Smurfs clothing and accessories, including Smurfette dress, Smurfette and Vexy pajamas, Smurf BFF slippers, Vexy skirt outfit, Smurf hoodie, and Smurfs theme song (La La Song).

Build-A-Bear Workshop Meets Bikini Bottom with New SpongeBob SquarePants Collection

Build-A-Bear Workshop, the interactive entertainment retailer of customizable stuffed animals, announced a new relationship with Nickelodeon to bring the animated series, SpongeBob SquarePants, to Build-A-Bear Workshop. Beginning May 17, the company will offer make-your-own SpongeBob and Patrick at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores throughout North America and online at buildabear.com. SpongeBob’s Bikini Bottom friends Sandy Cheeks and Gary the Snail will also be available as pre-stuffed minis.

Build-A-Bear Workshop stores nationwide will be celebrating the arrival of SpongeBob with a series of special events from May 17 through May 19. Guests will be encouraged to dress up in their favorite SpongeBob-themed apparel. Additionally, guests who purchase a SpongeBob or Patrick plush will receive a free paper pineapple hat while making one of these new furry friends.

Guests can dress their SpongeBob and Patrick plush in a variety of clothing and accessories, including SpongeBob’s Pirate Costume, Patrick’s Pirate Costume, Pineapple House, and SpongeBob SquarePants Song Sound Chip.

Additionally, any furry friend can dress up in SpongeBob PJ Pants and SpongeBob T-Shirt to join the Bikini Bottom fun.

COMMENTARY: Bronies, Rejoice!

My Little Pony is everywhere lately, which might be cause for Bronies—adult male fans of the magical, flowing mane ponies—to rejoice. These unlikely fans of the mainly children’s, mainly girl’s property find themselves addicted to My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic on The Hub TV Network and fawning over toys and plush tucked away in pink aisles of Toys “R” Us.

I, myself, am not a member of this ilk. But I very well could be. As a kid in the 80s, I begged my mom to buy me a Care Bear—Grumpy Bear, to be exact—even though my dad disapproved. I coveted my sister’s Strawberry Shortcake bed set and would watch—and pretend to dislike—Rainbow Bright. If I don’t have Brony potential, I don’t know who does.

So, in the spirit of embracing the Brony in all of us, I’ve pulled together some cool new My Little Pony toys and plush that we have to look forward to.

My Little Pony Plush, from Aurora

aurora_2Aurora, in partnership with Hasbro, will initially release 18 My Little Pony styles, including 12 small, 6-inch ponies each with a personalized carrying bag, and six soft plush ponies about 10 inches in size. My Little Pony plush will be available for purchase in both the U.S. and Canada in Aurora’s retail channel of more than 25,000 specialty stores and gift shops as well as online at shop.auroragift.com.

Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash, from Build-A-Bear Workshop

buildabear_5In Build-A-Bear Workshop retail stores and online this month, fans of My Little Pony can customize their own Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash plush. Customers can dress their pony in their favorite My Little Pony fashions. Pinkie Pie has signature pink locks, and Rainbow Dash has a multi-colored mane that can be brushed, combed, and braided. Customers can dress Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash in their signature capes or a variety of other fashions.

My Little Pony Walkin’ Talkin’ Pinkie Pie, from Hasbro

7209FB2550569047F50D477617E8C75BHasbro introduces the Walkin’ Talkin’ Pinkie Pie, which walks forward, speaks silly pony phrases, and sings songs as she trots. Gently press the balloons on her cutie mark and watch her go. The figure wears an adorable headband with two yellow stars that bobble as she walks. This version of Pinkie Pie is available at most major toy retailers nationwide and on HasbroToyShop.com.

If your inner Brony is jonsing for a quick pony fix, Hasbro.com has a number of online games, including the My Little Pony Crystal Match game. You’re welcome.

For more commentary from Loren, check back each Wednesday afternoon. Views expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Toy Book as a whole. We hope that you will share your comments and feedback below. Until next time!

Build-A-Bear Workshop Partners with Hasbro for My Little Pony Plush

buildabear_5Build-A-Bear Workshop will bring the My Little Pony brand to store shelves with a collection of characters under license from Hasbro Inc. Arriving April 1, Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash will be available at Build-A-Bear Workshop stores throughout North America and online at Buildabear.com. The first ever make-your-own My Little Pony plush allows customers to personalize the characters.

Build-A-Bear Workshop stores nationwide will hold a series of special events from April 1 through April 7. Customers and associates will be encouraged to dress up in their favorite My Little Pony fashions. Additionally, while making a My Little Pony friend, guests can take a pony personality quiz, recite the pony promise, and learn how to style their pony’s hair with a special hair care brochure. Pinkie Pie has signature pink locks, and Rainbow Dash has a multi-colored mane that can be brushed, combed, and braided. Guests can dress Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash in their signature capes or a variety of other fashions.