Thursday, September 29, 2016

My Favorites at Toy Insider's Holiday of Play

Last week I attended the Toy Insider “Holiday of Play Fall 2016 Toy Showcase.” Among the bustling crowd of media and bloggers were toy companies displaying and demonstrating their top toys for this holiday season.  I always enjoy these events and learn a lot.  Then I try to step back and think about what grandparents would like to give to their grandchildren.  And so my favorites list is personal and usually different than what the PR is all about.    Here are MY favorites from the show.

Octotunes by Lamaze (TOMY)
Octotunes by Lamaze (TOMY)
This is a large colorful soft toy that can be enjoyed by the smallest baby and older ones too.  It has 8 legs and a different note is sounded when you squeeze each leg.  The package has color coded songs so you can play a familiar tune even if you can’t read music.  Eye catching and will be fun to play with a baby.

Once Upon a Craft – The Gingerbread Man by Educational Insights

Once Upon a Craft -Gingerbread by Educational Insights
This is an easy craft project that is excellent for grandparents and grandchildren to enjoy together.  You start by reading the 24 page storybook and then the foam gingerbread man can be decorated with the stickers provided.  There are also 7 ready to color finger puppets and decorative frame that can be used as a puppet show stage.  This low cost all-in-one package craft is an excellent item to have on hand for when your grandchildren visit.  Perfect sleepover activity.

Betty Spaghetty – Popstar Betty by Moose
Betty Spaghetty Popstar
Betty Spaghetty dolls were very popular in the 1990s and discontinued in the early 2000s.  She is back this year and expected to be a big hit.  When I opened my swag bag my 7 year old grandson knew right away who she was.  There are 12 different themed dolls available in single packs.  This is the popstar and she comes with 21 interchangeable parts.  To get a better idea of how you play with her watch this video:

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Mutagen Mayhem Battle Game by Nickelodeon
TMNT Mutagen Mayhem Game by Nickelodeon

I haven’t met a boy aged 4 – 8 who isn’t a TMNT fan.  I bet you haven’t either.  This new game has a plastic “mayhem collision rail” that flips the characters over and the game figures pop up for battle.  The first player with four slices of pizza wins.  This is an action oriented game – fun for TMNT fans and action oriented kids.

Shopkins Happy Places House Playset by Moose
Shopkins Happy Places House Playset
Shopkins is the largest selling collectible on the market.  Boys and Girls love collecting and playing with these cute little shopping items.  Now Moose is introducing the Happy Places line which provide  dolls and playset settings to enjoy with your shopkins.

Geckobot by Thames and Kosmos
Geckobot by Thames and Kosmos
This is an amazing building set for older kids. You build a wall climbing robot – Geckobot -  with an air suction system that allows the robot to walk vertically up walls.  There are six other building models with accompanying physics experiments making this an excellent learning opportunity while having great fun.   Geckobot is also an excellent project for a grandparent to participate in.

I hope you enjoyed these reviews.  All the pictures were taken by me as seen at the show - no stock photos here. Please leave your comments and let me know what you think of these toys.   Here I am as I arrived:
Marion Conway at Toy Insider Fall 2016 Showcase


Kristi said...

I would much rather hear reviews written by real grandmas like you, rather than reviews written by PR companies. What a fun event this must have been! Thanks for sharing your opinions!

Pamela S said...

Thank you, thank you. Didn't you do this last year also? I believe I got some good toy ideas from you. I see a few things on here that I need to add to the Christmas list for some of my grandkids. The Shopkins house! Geckobot!

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