China Toy Fair


TIF to Auction Off a Tour of Sesame Street and More

by Alexis Willey

tif_logoThe Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) is launching an online fundraising auction to benefit TIF programs and grants, which help children in need around the world.

TIF partnered with global charity auction site, Charitybuzz, to host the auction—which includes a visit to the set of Sesame Street in New York, tickets to Nickelodeon’s 2015 Kids’ Choice Awards in Los Angeles, and private meetings with top toy executives.

Bids may be placed through September 30 at charitybuzz.com/tif.

Nickelodeon’s TV and Digital Channels to Go Dark for 11th Annual Worldwide Day of Play

Nickelodeon will empower kids to get active when its TV channels, websites, and app go off air and offline for its 11th Annual Worldwide Day of Play (WWDoP) on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. ET. Nickelodeon, Nicktoons, Nick Jr., TeenNick, nick.com, nickjr.com, nicktoons.com, teennick.com, and the Nick App will all participate.

The network’s national pro-social partners—United States Tennis Association, NFL Play 60, the Boys and Girls Club of America, among others—will host several thousand local events across the country to help celebrate kids’ love of play. These events will be hosted by Nickelodeon’s national partners, including Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City, the Boys and Girls Club of America, the Girl Scouts of the USA, and more.

On September 20, Nickelodeon will air health and wellness-themed messaging beginning at 9 a.m. At 12 p.m., Nickelodeon will sign-off on air and online, signaling kids and families to get up and get moving. While the network is dark, a message encouraging viewers to go play will appear on a loop. [Read more...]

Hasbro to Step Back from The Hub Children’s Network

Hasbro logoAs reported by The Wall Street Journal, Discovery Communications Inc. and Hasbro Inc. are ending their equal partnership in The Hub, a cable network that hoped to become a force in children’s television against Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel.

Under the terms being completed, Discovery would take a controlling interest in The Hub and reposition the channel as a family network aimed at parents as well as children. Hasbro will retain a large stake in the service and control six hours of daytime programming on the network, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Launched in 2010 with a $300 million investment from Hasbro for half of the network, The Hub was designed to be an outlet for some of Hasbro’s best-known toy brands, including G.I. Joe, Transformers, and My Little Pony.

The makeover could take place as early as the fourth quarter, with The Hub renamed Discovery Family.

Rubie’s Introduces Paw Patrol Costume Collection

rubielogoRubie’s Costume Co. Inc., under license with Nickelodeon, is launching official costumes for Paw Patrol. Available in child sizes toddler and small, the Paw Patrol Costume Collection includes the heroic pups Marshall, Chase, and Skye. In addition, the collection is available for pets.

Paw Patrol is a CG, action-adventure series that is currently the highest-selling preschool series on iTunes.

Jeffrey Dunn Named President and CEO, Sesame Workshop

sesame-workshopVincent Mai, chairman of the board of trustees of Sesame Workshop, announced today the appointment of Jeffrey Dunn as president and CEO of Sesame Workshop, effective September 29. Dunn, formerly the president and CEO of Hit Entertainment, will succeed Mel Ming, who announced his retirement earlier this year.

Dunn currently serves as a 2014 Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University with a focus on media and education. Previously, he served as president and CEO of Hit Entertainment from 2008 until 2012. Before joining Hit, Dunn served as group COO of the Nickelodeon Networks group and the president of Nickelodeon Film and Enterprises, where, among other things, he built Nickelodeon’s international networks business and oversaw the growth of Blue’s Clues, SpongeBob SquarePants, and Dora the Explorer into three of the world’s largest licensed property brands.

Lalaloopsy Girls Movie to Debut on Nickelodeon

An all-new Lalaloopsy Girls movie, Lalaloopsy Girls: Welcome to L.A.L.A. Prep School, will air on Nickelodeon on September 7 at noon. The one-hour animated special features the new Lalaloopsy Girls students at the Lalaloopsy Academy for Learning Arts, where they learn to navigate the fun and quirky school, attend classes, join clubs, and make friends along the way.

Nickelodeon Suites Resort to Kick Off Halloween Nick-or-Treat Celebration in October

nickelodeon suites resortNickelodeon Suites Resort (Nick Hotel) is inviting guests to join the fun of its annual Halloween Nick-or-Treat, and celebrate the scariest holiday of the year with slime, treats and a ghoulish good time. Starting on October 4, and continuing every weekend of the month, guests can dress in their favorite costume and collect treats from Nickelodeon characters at Nick-or-Treat stations around the resort.

During Nick-or-Treat, guests will enjoy other activities, including a Spooky Splash Bash at the Lagoon Pool where they can play Halloween-themed games, slide down one of seven water slides, and get slimed. Guests are encouraged to wear a costume during the festivities or borrow one from the hotel. Every child participating in Nick-or-Treat will receive a Power Rangers-themed trick-or-treat bag with toys, removable tattoos, and more.

Beginning this month, Nickelodeon Suites Resort will offer special stay packages and Florida resident rates. More information can be found at nickhotel.com.

COMMENTARY: Classic Games Are Revived with Modern Twists

5CF7F28B50569047F5EEB18A916E5462The summer months are known for spontaneous beach trips, an abundance of delicious ice cream, and, of course, the much-dreaded summer storms that come with unbearable heat. But the next time the weather is uncompromising, consider having a family game night in, though I know what you’re thinking: Please, not another children’s game.

It can be difficult choosing a game everyone agrees on; parents are frequently disconnected, and youngsters who are a few years apart in age constantly battle over which game should be the one played. But a new trend in the toy industry could stop these common issues before game night even begins. I am constantly seeing companies revisiting old games and giving them a modern twist, and these simple alterations often involve modern technologies to pique younger players’ interest. [Read more...]

Rubie’s to Expand Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Costume Collection

Rubies.TMNTRubie’s Costume Co. Inc., under license with Nickelodeon, has launched officially licensed costumes, masks, and accessories based on the soon-to-be-released film, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, by Nickelodeon Movies and distributed by Paramount Pictures. Available in child and adult sizes, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Costume Collection includes: Leonardo, Michelangelo, Raphael and Donatello. The new product line reflects a modern day interpretation of the popular franchise.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arrives in theaters on August 8, and the costume collection by Rubie’s is available now for Halloween.

TMNT-Themed Monopoly Games to Hit Stores

Picture (Device Independent Bitmap) 1The Heroes in a Half Shell, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, will be seen in a whole new light, thanks to a new partnership from USAopoly and Nickelodeon. Under license from Hasbro, two new Monopoly games inspired by the much anticipated summer blockbuster, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles–Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Edition and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Collectors Edition–are set to hit stores this fall.

Picture (Device Independent Bitmap) 2In the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Editionfans of the popular television show will be able to vie for 22 popular locations found in the animated series. Teenage Mutant Turtles Collector’s Edition, meanwhile, will give fans the opportunity to sell and trade the notorious Turtle villains, and properties can be claimed and enhanced with custom pizza slices and pizza boxes, which replaces the traditional Monopoly houses and hotels.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles will be released on August 8th in theaters worldwide.