aNb Media News, October 21, 2010

TRU Enhances Shopping Experience

Toys “R” Us, Inc., (TRU) announced new and enhanced multi-channel services to streamline the shopping experience whether in-store or online. Beginning next week, TRU customers will have the ability to order items online and pick them up the same day in designated U.S. stores. This service will be available at nearly 260 Babies “R” Us stores nationwide, as well as at targeted Toys “R” Us stores in major U.S. markets including Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Seattle, and Washington, D.C. The company plans to expand the “Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store” program to include all TRU locations nationwide by the middle of next year.

In addition, TRU has expanded a number of services to help ensure items are available when and where customers want them. Shoppers can now check product availability in stores nationwide or on and without ever leaving their homes. Store associates can also help locate sought-after gifts in nearby stores or order them online to be shipped to a customer’s home free of charge.

Items eligible for the “Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store” program will be indicated as such on their product pages on the websites. Customers can enter their zip code to find the five nearest stores with inventory to determine where the item is available for pick up.

In addition, online shoppers searching for an item that is temporarily out-of-stock can take advantage of the “Notify Me When Available” option. By signing up for notification, the customer will receive an e-mail alert as soon as the item becomes available online for purchase.

Inventors in the Spotlight

Those in the inventor community are the unsung heroes of the toy industry and now a new film looks to shine a light on their work. Toyland, Fun in the Making is a 68-minute film, which offers the moviegoing public a peek behind the scenes as to how many of today’s toys came to be.

The film looks back at some of the classics such as Play-Doh, Operation, and Slinky while featuring interviews with the industry’s most prolific inventors such as Eddy Goldfarb (inventor of Yakity-Yak Teeth, Kerplunk, and Battling Tops), Bert Meyer (inventor of Lite Brite and Mouse Trap), and Reyn Guyer (inventor of Nerf and Twister), among others. There’s a lot of stories about the legendary inventor Marvin Glass.

Meanwhile, the film highlights the creative process that occurs inside today’s toy industry featuring Big Monster Toys and The Otis College of Art and Design.

Although the film tells the story of many classic toys, the crux of it focuses on inventor Tim Walsh. Moviegoers will get a glimpse of how an idea gets started, created, and pitched—in some cases many times over for years—before it can ever be played with by a child.

The film has been screened in theaters at 11 different film festivals and just won Best Documentary at the Naperville Independent Film Festival. Produced and directed by Ken Sons, and edited by Ken Sons and Tim Walsh, the group is looking for a distribution deal to get the film on a cable TV network. Visit to view the trailer.

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