ASTRA is readying its retailers for the 2011 Holiday season with tips to garner as much media as possible, drawing consumers into stores.
For the past several years I’ve been attending the TAGIE Awards (The Toy & Game Inventor Awards). Held during CHITAG, the Chicago Toy & Game Fair, I’ve watched the event grow tremendously. This year’s event, held at Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry, was completely sold out. It was hosted by Tim Walsh (inventor of Tribond and Blurt and now filmmaker for the movie Toyland) who has a great comedic style. Hasbro inventor relations’ main man, Mike Hirtle, gave the keynote address. For me, there were two highlights during the evening. The first was the lifetime achievement award presented to Eddie Goldfarb. He has created more popular toys than can be named here. However, some of his highlights include Yakity Yak Chattering Teeth, Ker Plunk, and Battling Tops. The second highlight was watching Kate Daniels win the Young Inventor Award. It was presented by Seth Calvin, the 2009 winner, and John Ratzenberger (of Cheers and Toy Story fame. He’s the voice of Hamm the piggy bank). I also enjoyed the open bar. . . perhaps a little too much.
ASTRA is gearing up to better serve its members in 2011 through media outreach, seminars, and a redesigned website.
Toy Industry Association has a host of activities planned for Toy Fair 2011.
When I was coming up in the toy industry there was only one trade show worth mentioning: New York Toy Fair—and it was an extravaganza. Anyone who was anyone was walking the halls of the historic Toy Building. Good or bad—those days are long gone. Today there are myriad trade shows to choose from. Each one supposedly serves its own purpose: some are for the mass market, some for the specialty market, some for international markets; yet I see many of the same buyers at all of them. The one common link between these shows is the proverbial water cooler discussion, “Are trade shows even necessary anymore?”
The Toy Industry Foundation (TIF) continuously strives to put smiles on the faces of children in need. This holiday season will be no exception, when TIF and Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) launch the winter festivities with their largest toy distribution to date.
China is a growing economic powerhouse. What does China’s growth mean for the U.S. toy industry?
ASTRA is declaring November 13 as Neighborhood Toy Store Day. Learn how your store can be part of the promotion.
Fall Toy Preview takes place next month in Dallas. TIA says every major retailer is registered to attend. Find out which retailers as well as manufacturers will be there.