COMMENTARY: Back to Basics: Sketch, Doodle, Paint, and Play

TF14Logo-cityDatesAfter Toy Fair 2013, the words “and there’s an app!” were ringing in my ears for weeks. This year, however, appcessories seemed more like a taboo than anything else, with most companies shying away from toys with app-enhanced features or reliability. Honestly, it was less than disappointing. I think keeping screen time and toy time separate is perfectly acceptable, and apparently, what kids and toy buyers prefer.

This year will truly mark a return to traditional play patterns. Rainbow Loom, a simple bracelet-making kit for kids, was huge in 2013, eventually snagging four Toy of the Year (TOTY) awards, including the overall Toy of the Year. That said, Toy Fair 2014 brought tons of cool innovations in the activities category, with companies fighting to be the next big thing once the Rainbow Loom craze comes to an end. [Read more...]

Tegu Kicks Off Holidays with New Gift Options

TeguThis holiday season Tegu offers gift options that bring back unscripted play for kids through a variety of construction sets and accessories. Tegu is putting a spin on its Toy of the Year-nominated magnetic, wooden,“click-clacking” blocks that will offer children new building possibilities using safe and durable materials.

Tegu’s designs encourage learning and imaginative play that’s considered to be one of the best forms of learning by childhood development experts. Tegu also plans to spread holiday cheer by giving back to people in need with the Tegu Holiday Elf. From now until December 20, via #TeguElf on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, the Tegu Holiday Elf will randomly grant “wishes” by offering consumers items such as gift cards to local restaurants or coffee shops, and by helping people to “pay it forward” by making donations to local charities.

Holiday shoppers can visit Tegu’s Facebook for #TeguElf holiday promotions, giveaways, and discounts. The Tegu Elf also will  be randomly sneaking in extra Tegu Products and surprises to orders fulfilled by Tegu now through Christmas.

 

 

Toy Industry Hall of Fame Nominations Now Open

Members of the Toy Industry Association (TIA) and other toy industry stakeholders are invited to submit nominations of deserving candidates (living or deceased) for induction into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame, the TIA says in a news release. Selected candidates will join 62 current members of the hall of fame during a ceremony to be held in conjunction with the 14th annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards ceremony on February 15 of next year. The nomination period will extend from May 28 through June 28. Membership in TIA is not a prerequisite for submitting a nomination.

Nominees for the Toy Industry Hall of Fame should have longstanding experience in the toy industry; unimpeachable integrity and respect among his or her peers; have made outstanding contributions to the industry and/or to TIA; and be recognized for various accomplishments. Examples include innovative product or marketing introductions; manufacturing process changes, which significantly improved processes or products; a prominent role in promoting the public’s awareness and appreciation of the importance of toys in the lives of children, or promoting the public’s awareness of the toy industry as a significant and responsible member of the business community; and service on the TIA board of directors, or in other important capacities in or related to toys and youth entertainment.

Additional information on the Toy Industry Hall of Fame is available online. Questions and completed nomination forms should be directed to TIA’s Stacy Leistner (646) 520-4858 by June 28.

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...]

Toy Industry Foundation Launches TOTY Tribute Book Campaign

Courtesy of Toy Industry Association

The Toy Industry Foundation is now accepting ads for the Toy of the Year Awards (TOTY) Tribute Book.  The Tribute Book is the official take-home program for guests at the TOTY Awards Ceremony in February that provides information on top toys, industry icons, and philanthropy. It also features award nominees, Hall of Fame inductees, and past TOTY highlights. To reserve an add in the Tribute Book, visit The 2013 TOTY Tribute Book web page. Reservations, ad artwork, and ad payment donations are due by January 9. For more information, contact Marisa Medina at (646) 454-5581.

TOTY Award Winners Announced

More than five hundred toy industry executives and guests from around the globe gathered in New York City on February 11 to honor their peers at the 12th annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards and Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

A Toy Industry Association (TIA)-administered event in support of the Toy Industry Foundation, the  gala held in Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center kicked off the 109th American International Toy Fair and paid tribute to today’s superstars, tomorrow’s bright up-and-comers, and illustrious toy industry icons.

Interspersed with the presentations of 12 TOTY Awards were two inductions into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame: Arnie Rubin, Founder and CEO of Funrise Toy, and the late Frederick August Otto Schwarz, founder of FAO Schwarz. The new inductees join a distinguished roster of nearly 60 toy industry luminaries who have been inducted into the Hall since its establishment in 1985.

Award winners were selected with the input of consumers (on ToyAwards.org), retailers (mass and specialty), media, and members of the toy industry. The five ballots were weighted and used to determine the category winners as well as the overall “Toy of the Year” award.
LeapPad Explorer by LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc. received the coveted “Toy of the Year” title and was also awarded Educational Toy of the Year and Preschool Toy of the Year. The awards program included 77 finalists across the 11 categories.

And the winners are…

[Read more...]

TIA Announces 2012 TOTY Finalists

The Toy Industry Association (TIA) has announced the 77 finalists for the 2012 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards. Through January 15, toy lovers of all ages can vote for their favorite toys by visiting www.ToyAwards.org.

The finalists, representing 67 unique products or properties from 51 companies, were selected from nearly 600 nominees. TIA invites consumers, mass retailers, specialty retailers, media, and members of the toy industry to vote. Each of the five types of ballots will be weighted and used to determine the winners and the overall “Toy of the Year” award. Winners will be announced during the awards ceremony on Saturday, February 11 as the kick-off to the 109th American International Toy Fair.

[Read more...]

There’s Still Time to Win Ten Years of TOTY Prizes

Last week, the Toy Industry Foundation celebrated Ten Years of the Toy of the Year Awards, and the organization is giving Toy Story and Pixar fans an opportunity to win the event’s drawing prizes.

Contestants can enter to win a complete Toy Story collection donated by LEGO, or a signed, limited-edition print of concept art from John Lasseter’s short, Luxo, Jr. (1986). Luxo, Jr. was the first film produced by Pixar animation studios after its establishment as an independent film studio. Only 86 framed, hand-numbered editions prints were produced, and the prize comes with a certificated of authenticity and is signed by Lasseter.

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The Toy Book’s Toy Report 11/24/09

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Catch up on last week’s news! Read The Toy Book Toy Report for 11/24/09.

To view click here.

2010 TOTY Nominees Announced

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The nominees for the 2010 Toy of the Year (TOTY) awards have been announced.  The ballot will be sent to TIA members who will vote for the winners of the twelve categories. The winners from those categories will become the nominees for the overall Toy of the Year category, although a product can be named Toy of the Year via a write-in vote by TIA members.

[Read more...]