New Toys Earn 15 Minutes HE very first toy showcase, now called the American International Toy fair, was held in 1903 in New York. There’ve been a lot of surprises since then. For instance, in 1965 a doll based on a TV show called The Lieutenant was created. That doll, GI Joe, proved more popular than the series and surprised the industry, which assumed that boys wouldn’t play with dolls.
Product of the Year Award
At this year’s Toy Fair in February at the Javits Center, more than 1,200 exhibitors debuted about 5,000 new products, some of which earned the Seal of Approval from Johnathan, our Junior PET.
Here are some of the toys and games that won the Product of the Year Award from the15MinutesMagazine.com Products Evaluation Team (PET).
Peg-Perego Polaris Dragonfly will bring joy to any youngster age 2-4. Just ask Johnathan (that's not him in the photo). He was able to charge ahead at a neat clip of 2˝ mph on the sidewalk or patio. Don’t worry about the speed. The automatic brake will bring the vehicle to a full stop.
The removable rear box, with hinged lid, will hold all travel necessities such as a peanut butter sandwich, bottled water and even a make-believe driver’s license to make the driver feel as secure as an adult – with a weight capacity of 65 pounds.
The silver colored sidewalk ATV comes with a 6-volt battery and recharger. $139.99. To find authorized dealers check www.pegperego.com.
Radio Flyer Classic Red Tricycle is exactly what the name implies – classic. This from the legendary company that for 89 years has enthralled generations of children, first with the Liberty Coaster Wagon in 1917 and then, through the years, with various versions of the Little Red Wagon.
Junior PET Johnathan tested the Model 33 Classic Red Tricycle. He was delighted with the chrome handlebars and fender, ringing chrome bell, adjustable seat, and the 12-inch front wheel. Suitable for ages 2-5. SRP $60.
SpongBob Squarepants Deluxe Soft Ice Cream Server and Sno-Cone Maker is two products in one. Interchangeable parts allow kids to make either sno-cones or serve soft ice cream. Remove the ice shaver for making sno-cones and insert the soft ice cream accessory. Put in your ice cream, turn the handle and the hard ice cream turns into soft ice cream. Includes SpongeBob machine, Wyler’s flavor packet, candy sprinkles, spoon, cups and instruction sheet. Ages 4 and up. SRP $9.99-$12.99. See more at www.littlekidsinc.com.
Wild Planet’s Spy Gear line has three new items for your kids who are agents in training. Micro Ear Gear is a combo pack consisting of two hands-free investigative devices. One is a Micro Ear Light with a bright red light, attached to your ear, to illuminate the path you take on your mission. The other is a Micro Agent Listener to amplify sound, even around corners. SRP for this combo pack is $9.99-$14.99. Another spy gear is the Secret Agent Pen with invisible ink to write secret messages. Your pal will be able to read with a second pen with its ultraviolet light. Lots of fun. SRP for this package of two pens is $9.99-$14.99. More at www.wildplanet.com.
Dodge Discs will keep the kids hopping and jumping – out of way. These disc launchers, with built-in shields, will send foam discs shooting up to 25 feet. Aim at another kid and see if he can jump out of the way or block the flying disc with the launcher/shield. SRP set of two Dodge Discs, from Wild Planet, is $14.99-$19.99.
The History Channel Presents Time Troopers is a game you play on your DVD player. Contains more than 1700 questions to test your knowledge of the past, from ancient to modern history. Questions with images in three levels of difficulty, such as "What language did the ancient Romans speak: Italian, Latin, Spanish, French." How difficult is that? Another image shows an early airplane with the question: "Who were they: The Smothers Brothers, The Left Brothers, The Wright Brothers, TheWrong Brothers." And I thought they were the Blues Brothers. See what you could learn? $19.99 to $29.99 in stores. www.bequal.com.
Shrek: Totally Tangles Tales is a DVD games with 1600 questions and featuring John Cleese in various action scenes. You can write your own fairy tales, or try answering such questions as "In Jack and Beanstalk, what four silly syllables does the giant say?" Different levels for different ages, 6-9, 10-13, 14-106. $19.99 to $29.99 in stores. www.bequal.com.
Playmobil has everything your child needs to play house. Start with Modern House No. 3965, with movable walls, and add on a Family Room 3966, Modern Kitchen 3968, Family Room 3966 with a sofa that converts into a double bed, and add a suburban touch – a Swimming Pool 3205 with a working shower and pool toys. Of course there are lots more you can add, such as bathroom, bunk beds, baby’s room, laundry room and car. Check out the fun at www.playmobil.com.
Land Before Time is a prehistoric adventure for Game Boy Advance. It’s another great video release from the product portfolio of The Game Factory. Young gamers, ages 7 and up, help fun dinosaur friends overcome various obstacles as they venture through six environments. SRP $29.99. www.gamefactorygames.com.