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The Toy Book — The Leading Toy Industry Magazine

  • ASTRA Offers Customer Service Workshop at Marketplace & Academy

    Mar 18, 2019

    ASTRA Offers Customer Service Workshop at Marketplace & Academy The American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) will host a special professional development session for sales representatives at its annual Marketplace & Academy. Participants will complete the customer service component required for ASTRA’s Certified Master Sales Representative (CMSR) certification and will have access to the remainder of the CMSR modules online to be fully credentialed. […]

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  • LEGO Ideas’ Mickey Mouse Steamboat Willie Sets Sail

    Mar 18, 2019

    LEGO Ideas’ Mickey Mouse Steamboat Willie Sets Sail LEGO has gone black and white. The brickmaker celebrates Mickey Mouse‘s 90th anniversary with the LEGO Ideas Steamboat Willie building set. Paying tribute to the 1928 animated short film in which Mickey Mouse made his debut (also the first Disney film to feature synchronized sound), the LEGO brick version of the S.S. Willie features paddle wheels that […]

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  • FAO Schwarz Returns to Chicago with Midway Airport Grand Opening

    Mar 16, 2019

    FAO Schwarz Returns to Chicago with Midway Airport Grand Opening FAO Schwarz is back in the Windy City. The famed toy retailer opened its second airport location inside Midway International Airport on Chicago’s south side. FAO Schwarz Senior Experience Manager Anthony DiAmbrosio was on hand for the grand opening, leading a tour through the 1,000 square-foot location. In addition to a wide range of classic […]

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  • Hasbro’s UglyDolls Toys Hit Retail; STX Looks for Fan Creations

    Mar 16, 2019

    Hasbro’s UglyDolls Toys Hit Retail; STX Looks for Fan Creations Hasbro‘s first-ever collection of UglyDolls toys has arrived. Previewed at Toy Fair New York, the UglyDolls movie collection officially launched at mass retail on March 15. Hasbro brings UglyDolls into the toy aisles as figures and play sets, in addition to a refreshed line of plush — the format that started it all for creators David Horvath […]

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  • KB Toys Relaunch? Strategic Marks is Still Seeking Funding

    Mar 15, 2019

    KB Toys Relaunch? Strategic Marks is Still Seeking Funding It was one year ago today that Toys “R” Us announced that it would liquidate and shutter its entire U.S. operation. As shockwaves moved through the toy industry, three days later Toys “R” Us was countered by another surprise announcement — KB Toys was plotting a comeback. Specifically, Ellia Kassoff, CEO of Leaf Brands and […]

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Beyond Toys: Lifestyle & More

  • Eight Years Ago Today, I Quit Smoking... but the Battle Rages On...

    Eight Years Ago Today, I Quit Smoking... but the Battle Rages On...

    Seven years ago, I celebrated one-year tobacco-free with a journal entry about my personal journey. Then, in 2013, I posted again, celebrating the two-year anniversary of coming clean (indeed, cigarettes are a drug), followed by another post in 2014 documenting year three, and how I couldn't get Philip Morris/Altria to leave me alone (they since have, but only after I threatened legal action). In 2015, I posted again, noting that little bits had changed, like Cracker Barrel restaurants playing into the Read More
  • MLB Spring Training: Baseball, Warm Weather, and Off-Field Controversy

    MLB Spring Training: Baseball, Warm Weather, and Off-Field Controversy

    Americans have always and will always love sports. Though baseball once reigned supreme and was hailed as America's pastime, football as taken over in recent years. In fact, 37% of U.S. adults say that football is their favorite sport and baseball is at its lowest point ever, with only 9%. Plenty of off-field drama has hurt the NFL's reputation recently, but baseball, rather than capitalize on the NFL's perils, is no stranger to off-the-field drama, either. Read More
  • Gardening 101: Understanding The Most Common Types of Soil

    Gardening 101: Understanding The Most Common Types of Soil

    Soil is a mixture of organic matter, minerals, gases, liquids, and organisms that, together, support life. Earth's body of soil (the pedosphere) functions as a medium for plant growth; as a means of water storage, supply, and purification; as a habitat for organisms; and as a modifier of the planet's atmosphere. Read More
  • 6 Creative Ways Small Businesses Are Using Shipping Containers

    6 Creative Ways Small Businesses Are Using Shipping Containers

    Small businesses, which are defined as organizations with fewer than 500 employees, account for 99.7% of all companies in the United States. If you're thinking about opening some kind of small business yourself, instead of renting out or buying an expensive office building, you might want to consider a shipping container. Since you'll likely only need an employee or two while you're first starting out, a container is a great area for dozens of business ventures. There are roughly 17 Read More
  • Cultural Cuisines: When Tex-Mex Meets Texas BBQ In Your Backyard Get-Together

    Cultural Cuisines: When Tex-Mex Meets Texas BBQ In Your Backyard Get-Together

    Of the four styles of BBQ this country boasts, Texas BBQ is the most well-known. The famed pit barbeque creates smoked meats so flavorful that side dishes are secondary: one article in The New Yorker stated, "you don't hear a lot of people talking about the piquancy of a restaurant's sauce or the tastiness of its beans; discussions are what a scholar of the culture might call meat-driven." When you have a product so good that it stands alone -- and Read More
  • What Consumers Should Know About J.D. Power's 2019 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study

    What Consumers Should Know About J.D. Power's 2019 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study

    With there being about 5.4 million non-fatal car accidents every year on U.S. roads, people are always looking for the safest, most reliable car on the market. And thanks to J.D. Power's 2019 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study, U.S. consumers can now know which car is best to buy and why. Research firm J.D. Power has been putting together it's annual study for the past 30 years. This study looks at three-year-old models, so this year they looked at 2016 models. Read More
  •  3 Home Projects to Keep You Busy This Winter

     3 Home Projects to Keep You Busy This Winter

    The long winter months can often leave busy bodies feeling cooped up in their house. And while there isn't usually much you can do outside, there is plenty of work you can do to the interior of your home. So let's take a look at a few easy home projects you can consider to keep yourself busy this winter. Seal and Insulate You most likely have the heat cranked up during the winter months. And while this is perfectly fine, Read More
  • 4 Kinds of Sock Every Man Needs

    4 Kinds of Sock Every Man Needs

    It doesn't matter if you're severely fashion-challenged or a hipster with a pristine sense of style; you still wear socks. And though we wear socks almost every single day, many men don't have a single clue how to shop for a good pair of socks. Even though the average American spends around $1,800 on clothes every year, we tend to underspend when it comes to socks. Too often, when our socks seem to be few and far between in the Read More
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