Friday, November 2, 2012

Neighborhood Toy Store Day is Nov. 10th

The 3rd annual Neighborhood Toy Store Day is coming up on Saturday November 10, 2012.  It's a great opportunity to support local businesses.  These are the kind of places I just love visiting while on a walk downtown. You know the kind that just beckon you to come inside with their exciting displays and exciting store fronts.  These kinds of places really add to the over all atmosphere of a community's downtown, making it a nicer place to live and visit. 

Shopping in our own neighborhood is important to me because I like knowing our money stays in our own community supporting local economy and keeping neighbors employeed.  Plus, I find that small businesses really take the time to get to know their customers  Their stock often reflects the interests of their community.  You can often find unique, high-quality, boutique and specialty products not found in big box stores. 

Many also offer unique local events and creative incentives for their shoppers.    For example the store my MIL likes to shop at is offering festivities on November 10th that will highlight the years best toys for kids and bring neighbors together in the spirit of giving. Programs includes crafts, entertainers, free gifts and charitbale donations within the community. There will be popcorn, balloons and give-a-ways. Craft, toy and game demonstrations for all ages, plus drawings for prizes! Their pre-holiday sale is in progress with savings on 1000's of items.  Sounds like fun doesn't it?  You should visit the new website and use the store locator tool to find a store near you.
We were sent a set of Tobbles Neo by Fat Brain Toy Company as an example of the type of quality products available for sale at your neighborhood toy store.  Winner of ASTRA's Best Toys for Kids 2012 award in the Early Play/0-3 category, Tobbles Neo promotes open-ended and creative play.  Appropriate for ages 6 months +, with a suggested retail price of $27.99.   
LB is almost 15 months old, one busy guy always on the move and very interested in how things work, move, and interact.  He favors hands on toys, as opposed to stuffed animals and baby dolls like ER liked at the same age.  It's actually be quite fun to have a kiddo who actually plays with toys.  The Tobble Neo have been perfect for him.  Included are six uniquely weighted pieces and a base, only five are show above, the smallest rolled under the couch and I didn't notice it was missing until after we finished this play time. 

You stack the pieces and because of their shape you can tilt, spin, and wobble them around.  You can stack, topple, and balance the blocks in all sorts of crazy configurations.  LB enjoys stacking them up, knocking the over, and starting again.  Because there are several ways you can position them to stack he is successful each time.  He also likes to carry them around the house, roll them across the floor, and bang them together.
We also received a Roll & Play by ThinkFun.  For children 18+ months and with a suggest retail price of $19.99, it's a great first game for your toddler.  It was also a winner of ASTRA's Best Toys for Kids 2012 in the category of Early Play/0-3 for it's creative design features and promotion of open-ended and creative play.
LB is a little too young for this game, as he's just about to turn 15 months but I can already tell it's going to be a great game for us to play together as family.  As a former educator, I especially like how it encourages hands on learning and promotes fun while learning.  You roll the soft multi-colored cube and then draw a card that coordinates with the color that is face up on the cube. 

For example, when you land on blue you pick a card that prompts you to find something with a particular color.  Land on the color red and it incorporates counting but in a fun way, this time we were asked to wave twice.  I find it to be very early childhood appropriate and a game everyone, even the youngest can experience success with.  I highly recommend looking at your independent toy store for this game, I was quite impressed. 

Now that you know Neighborhood Toy Store Day is on Saturday November 10th, and have seen some examples of the variety of high qualty product available at independent toy stores, I hope you will visit Your Neighborhood Toy Store to find a local business by you.  I encourage you to check out all it has to offer!  If you already have a local favorite, I'd love to know the name of the store and what makes it so unique.
Neighborhood Toy Store Day is an annual event coordinated by the non-profit group ASTRA, the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association.

You can learn more about and how to support your neighborhood toy story through the links below: 

An online resource for parents interested in learning more about the best toys on the market and where to find them.  There is also expert advice on toys and play for children of all ages, a local toy store locator, toy buying guides, and much more.

Other ways to connect:
Show your support on Twitter with the hashtags: #toystoreday #localtoystore #shoplocal


Disclosure: This post is part of a campaign with Child's Play Communications.  The experiencees and opinons related within are personal and unbiased.  Complimentary sample products were provided. 

1 Friends Said:

maryanne @ mama smiles said...

I'll be posting about ASTRA this week! Neighborhood toy store really do stock amazing toys!

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