American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) Celebrates 13th Annual Neighborhood Toy Store Month

During November 2022, hundreds of retailers across the United States will be celebrating Neighborhood Toy Store Month, an expanded version of Neighborhood Toy Store Day. Spearheaded by the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA), the month-long event asks shoppers to remember the neighborhood toy stores in their communities as they kick off the holiday shopping season. Aligned with Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, participating retailers offer shoppers discounts, special events and hands-on experiences with children’s toys throughout the month.

ASTRA Announces First New England Game and Kit Day

On Thursday, October 27, 2022, the biggest names in specialty games and crafts will be training retailers and their staff at the Mass Mutual Center in Springfield, MA. Due to the success of the Portland, OR and Long Beach, CA Game and Kit days, ASTRA thought it would be a great idea to have one on the East Coast. The Mass Mutual Center is centrally located for easy access from all the New England States as well as Upstate, NY. A knowledgeable staff helps increase retail sales – why not have fun at the same time?

2022 ASTRA Best Toys for Kids Awards Announced

ASTRA unveiled its 2022 Best Toys for Kids award winners. The list includes twelve winning toys in twelve categories. “ASTRA’s Best Toys for Kids award program reflects the collective expertise of hundreds of toy retailers who know toys inside out,” said Sue Warfield, president of ASTRA. “The list of winners represents the best of the fun, top-quality, high play value products consumers can find in locally-owned neighborhood toy stores around the country.”

ASTRA Announces 2022 Excellence and Lifetime Achievement Award Winners

ASTRA is excited to announce the winners of the 2022 Excellence and Lifetime Achievement Award recipients for their accomplishments in 2021! The annual ASTRA Excellence and Lifetime Achievement Awards recognize the outstanding contributions made by members of the specialty toy industry. Join us in congratulating this year’s recipients! The winners will be recognized and honored at ASTRA’s award ceremony on Monday, June 13th at Marketplace and Academy.

ASTRA Welcomes New 2022 -2023 Board of Directors

The ASTRA nominating committee has announced the new incoming board members that have agreed to serve for a 3 year term. These new board memebers will be recognized at ASTRA’s annual meeting at Marketplace & Academy in Long Beach on Monday morning, June 13th.

PlayMonster’s Darby Zahradnik Joins ASTRA Board of Directors

PlayMonster is proud to announce the appointment of Darby Zahradnik to the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association’s (ASTRA) Board of Directors. This appointment supports the company’s continued commitment to serve specialty toy retailers in North America. Zahradnik will serve on the Board of Directors for a three year term, serving through 2025. 

Toobimals from Wonderfuljungle to Debut at ASTRA 2022

Say hello to the Original Toobimals, a sensory toobed plush toy. Specialty toy retailers will be on the hunt at ASTRA’s Marketplace for the perfect products to stretch limited 4th quarter budgets while delighting young customers, and a look-see at Booth 1823 will have them not only stretching but popping, pushing, pulling and smiling. 

Komarc Games to Unveil New StickiKubes and Finger Topz at ASTRA 2022

Retailers looking for something fresh and full of delight will be sticking around Booth 1731 at ASTRA as Komarc Games unveils StickiKubes ($9.99) and Finger Topz ($14.99) plus showcases a half dozen best seller boxed toys and games. All are in stock and ready for childhood exploration. Specialty retailers have always had a keen eye for finding the perfect product for their customers. ASTRA’s Marketplace is this summer’s not-to-be-missed specialty toy show.