On September 22, the toy industry’s essential holiday shopping list is set to be revealed!

The Toy Insider‘s Holiday of Play event is back to an in-person format* during which the Toy Insider‘s 16th annual Holiday Gift Guide will be unwrapped. Brought to you by Adventure Media & Events — publisher of the Toy Book and the Pop Insider — Holiday of Play will serve up a first look at the Toy Insider‘s annual Hot 20, STEM 10, and 12 Under $20 hot holiday toy lists in addition to a selection of toys from seven key trend areas.

The Toy Insider is the toy industry’s most influential media organization and a trusted go-to resource for parents and gift-givers all year round. The team of experts attends major toy industry trade shows and events and conducts briefings with manufacturers, retailers, and analysts throughout the year. When evaluating toys, the team considers play value, originality, skill building, product integrity, and, of course, fun factor.

More than 30 toy companies will be on hand at Holiday of Play in New York City to showcase this year’s must-have holiday toys with onsite demos and activations.

The Toy Insider’s 2021 Hot Holiday Toy Trends

  • Family Game Night: Gather ’round the gameboard for some good old-fashioned family fun.
  • Going Viral: Toys and more based on social sensations, as seen on YouTube, TikTok and Instagram.
  • Home Is Where the Fun Is: DIY craft, science, and construction kits that will keep kids busy at home.
  • In My Feelings: Toys that promote sensory and social-emotional learning (SEL) development.
  • Perfect Pets: These tech-infused pets offer all of the fun with none of the mess, and they come complete with lots of interactive magic.
  • Tech that Teaches: Tech-forward toys with educational benefits.
  • When I Grow Up: From hometown heroes to future pop stars, these toys inspire kids’ future careers.

Holiday of Play is an invitation-only media event with limited space available. To request credentials, contact Elizabeth Tran, LKPR Inc: Elizabeth@LKPRinc.com, 973-885-0056.

Media Opportunities:

  • B-roll of this year’s hottest toys in action (unboxing, moving, flying, etc.)
  • All 42 Hot List toys will be set up and photo-ready.
  • Interviews with the Toy Insider experts, including soundbites on this year’s hot toy and gift trends, and commentary on this year’s retail landscape (designated festive area available for stand-ups)
  • Plus, access to more than 30 toy manufacturers onsite.

Sample Play Opportunities and Visuals:

  • Be the first to see tonies’ newest set of Disney figurines, taking audio storytelling to new heights with exciting stories to tell, songs to sing, and worlds to explore.
  • Get a sneak peek at the world’s first animatronic character that live-connects to an in-app gaming universe from GAMEBUD.
  • Take a ride on the Flybar Bumper Cars and bring your favorite amusement park ride home.
  • Let the good times roll with the RC Rock n’ Rollerskate Doll from JAKKS Pacific as she skates, performs 360 spins, and does splits.
  • Tap into your inner ninja and connect with your allies with Playmates Toys’ Spy Ninjas Covert Communicators.
  • Explore the fun, magical world of Diana, star of the hit YouTube channel Kids Diana Show, with the Love, Diana Fashion Fabulous Magic Music Castle from Far Out Toys.
  • Plus, never-before-seen toys, new exhibitors who weren’t at this summer’s Sweet Suite @ Home event, and more.

*COVID-19 Guidelines: Per the NYC mandate, all guests who are eligible to be vaccinated are required to show proof of vaccination along with a matching photo ID. All attendees are required to wear masks. Event organizers are taking every safety precaution to ensure that attendees and exhibitors can safely interact and will continue to monitor local conditions and government guidelines leading up to the event.

About the author

James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn, AKA The Rock Father, is Editor-in-Chief of The Toy Book, a Senior Editor at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider, and Editor of The Toy Report, The Toy Book‘s weekly industry newsletter. As a pop culture and toy industry expert, Zahn has appeared as a panelist and guest at events including Comic-Con International: San Diego (SDCC) Wizard World Chicago, and the ASTRA Marketplace & Academy. Zahn has more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment, retail, and publishing industries, and is frequently called upon to offer expert commentary for publications such as Forbes, Marketwatch, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Reuters, the Washington Post, and more. James has appeared on History Channel’s Modern Marvels, was interviewed by Larry King and Anderson Cooper, and has been seen on Yahoo! Finance, CNN, CNBC, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, CBS, WGN, The CW, and more. Zahn joined the Adventure Media & Events family in 2016, initially serving as a member of the Parent Advisory Board after penning articles for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family, PBS KIDS, Sprout Parents (now Universal Kids), PopSugar, and Chicago Parent. He eventually joined the company full time as a Senior Editor and moved up the ranks to Deputy Editor and Editor-in-Chief.