COMMENTARY: Bath Time Is Play Time in My House

I’m a lucky mom (for many reasons), but in the context of this post I’m lucky because my kids love taking baths. It’s one less thing to fight about. However, the reason they don’t mind cleaning up is that it’s fun. It’s not the getting clean part they enjoy (Lena has tried to make me forget about that portion of the experience many times), but the playing. Entertaining a 4-year-old in the tub is very different from distracting an 8-month-old, but bath toys have come a long way since I was a kid (plastic cup and Dawn dish soap, anyone?), and I’ve got a whole array of toys to get the job done. [Read more...]

Chicago Toy & Game Group Expands Events in the U.S. and Abroad

The Chicago Toy & Game Group (ChiTAG) expanded its toy industry networking events to cities around the U.S., Canada, and the UK.

ChiTAG Networking Events were recently held in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Toronto with upcoming events planned for London on June 5, Chicago on June 11, and Nashville on June 18 during ASTRA Marketplace & Academy, as well as events slated for New York, Seattle, Boston, Indianapolis, Sarasota, Montreal, and more.

ChiTAG advocates toy and game inventors, and its Networking Events are one of the many ways the organization carries out its mission to bring the industry together to share information, foster collaborative opportunities, and promote the power of play and the toy industry as a whole.

Events attract professionals from all areas of the business including manufacturers, inventors, designers, sales reps, independent consultants, and more, who come together to share experiences and develop new business relationships.

Past and future events are co-sponsored and held in collaboration with companies including Spin Master, Mind Candy, ThinkFun, Mayfair Games, PlaSmart, Bananagrams, Endless Games, RoosterFin, DesignEdge, Patch Products, Educational Insights, Top Trumps, Joyce Johnson Designs, Peaceable Kingdom, Jukem Football, Dynamic Designworks/DDW Inc., OtherdoorEntertainment, Snakes & Lattes, and toy/game retailers across the country.

Admission to ChiTAG Networking Events is free, and RSVP’s are required. For more information on upcoming events, please visit www.chitag.com/us/networking-events or email the Chicago Toy & Game Group at info@chitag.com, or phone (847) 677-8277.

COMMENTARY: Turning a Complaining Kid into a Knitting-Whiz

This winter has been a brutal one for New Yorkers (and I’m not even sure it’s over yet). I for one was more than willing to load up on the cold weather gear, donning a new bubble coat, an oversized infinity scarf, and fingerless gloves with mitten covers in a concerned effort to keep out the cold and stave off the flu. Long johns were even necessary on a few of the more brutal days this year. Though most adults are eager to be as warm as possible during the winter months, it can be difficult to get kids to bundle up willingly. My niece and nephew whine and whine about putting on their winter’s finest: “The zipper pinches my chin!,” “I can’t breathe!,” “I can’t see with this hat on,” etc., etc. A good way to combat the incessant complaining and layering reluctance is to let kids make their own cold weather accessories. [Read more...]

Tenth Chicago Toy & Game Fair Sets Attendance Records

The 10th anniversary Chicago Toy & Game Fair continued its tradition as the nation’s largest public play event, attracting more than 25,000 people to Navy Pier on the weekend before Thanksgiving. The Fair was the finale of Chicago Toy & Game Week, which featured industry seminars, a highly celebrated inventor awards gala, and a new toy-inspired fashion show, playCHIC. [Read more...]

Chicago Toy and Game Fair Teams Up with PlaSmart to Challenge Artistic Youth

The Chicago Toy and Game Group challenges kids to display their innovative excellence at the 5th Annual Young Inventors Challenge on November 17. The Young Inventors Challenge will be one of the featured events at the Chicago Toy and Game Fair, hosted at Chicago’s Navy Pier.

PlaSmart Inc., which provides non-electronic toys as merchandise, is the presenting sponsor of the Young Inventors Challenge. Kids ages 6 to 18 are welcome to present their original toy or game inventions at the Chicago Toy and Game Fair, where it will be judged by popular vote in front of more than 25,000 fair attendees.

To register or receive further information on the Young Inventors Challenge, visit www.younginventorchallenge.com.

 This post was originally written by Lindsay Gordon and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.

PlaSmart Signed as Exclusive North American Distributor for DoodleArt

PlaSmart Inc., has been signed as the exclusive North American distributor for mass and specialty retailers for the color-it-yourself poster kit brand The Original DoodleArt.

DoodleArt posters will be rebranded in new plastic tubes with large label inserts. Each poster kit comes with 12 felt-tip pens, each with a calligraphy tip on one end and a fine tip on the other end. The pens are filled with environmentally friendly vegetable-dye inks.

Twenty of the original DoodleArt posters have been digitally recreated with ten currently in print. In keeping with DoodleArt tradition, a new design will also be unveiled at next year’s New York Toy Fair.

This post was originally written by Loren Moreno and published by ToyBook.com. For more news, visit www.toybook.com, follow The Toy Book on Twitter, and like The Toy Book on Facebook. The Toy Book is a bimonthly trade magazine covering the toy industry, published by Adventure Publishing Group.