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Monday, December 16 2013 02:40

A Cabbage Patch Christmas: 30 Years of the Cabbage Patch Kids

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125cpkIt was 1983 when the CABBAGE PATCH KIDS burst onto the National scene with the mass-produced versions of Xavier Roberts' cute creations. I had just turned seven, and my sister was just a few months out from her fourth birthday when Christmas '83 rolled around and sent shoppers into a frenzy - perhaps the first major example of a must-have toy that created absolute chaos in in the toy department. There were tales of people scalping CPK dolls from the trunks of cars... squeezing parents for whatever they could in a pre-eBay world. For my sister and I, we wouldn't get dolls in '83, but would a year later when they were a little easier to come by, but still a hot holiday toy. My doll is named "Ollie," and I still have the little guy. On his tush, he's marked with Roberts' signature, and a little number "84."

The Rock Father and OllieI don't have Ollie's original outfit, but at some point in the mid-80s (probably 85/86), we got him a CHICAGO WHITE SOX Uniform, and that's what he's still wearing in 2013. No one could've predicted the lasting legacy of the dolls, and as a kid, I never considered that 30 years later, I'd be a Dad with kids of my own... who have Cabbage Patch Kids of their own. In fact, the CPKs have been pretty important here at Rock Father HQ. I've even blogged about them a time or two in the past.

When Addie was about to become a big sister last year, she received one of the Toys "R" Us Exclusive "Big Sister, Little Sister" sets (now retired). While these dolls came with names from Babyland General, they became the CPK versions of my two daughters, and as my oldest will tell you, they're "Cabbage Patch Addie" and "Cabbage Patch Finley." A learning tool and beloved set of dolls, these girls were soon joined by a trio of "Cabbage Patch Cuties" as time went on. But Christmas of 2012 was an interesting flashback.

addiecpk

addieandjosefIn the days leading up to Christmas last year, Addie started becoming hung-up on wanting a new doll. She'd been so sweet in her visits with Santa that she told him that as far as presents go, she only needs "just one," but she hadn't asked for anything specific. Shopping for Mommy and Daddy had long-been finished, and I had on pretty good authority that Santa Claus was not bringing a doll. Then, on Christmas Eve, Addie kept telling us that she really hoped that Santa would bring her a new doll - or a Cabbage Patch Kid - but she'd forgotten to ask. Let's just say that Santa had a little bit of help, because in our garage... tucked away where Addie had never seen it, was a 15th Anniversary Cabbage Patch Kid from 1998. I'd purchased it for my wife that Christmas, and she'd kept it boxed, and it stayed that way until December 25th, 2012 when she joined her more recent counterparts as friends of my little one.

josefboxed2013 marks 30 Years of Cabbage Patch Kids with a new line of "Celebration Kids" from the folks at JAKKS Pacific. They were kind enough to send us a new little friend, "Josef Houston," who, with his spiked hair and a little blue streak, looks a little rocker-ish... but even a tad "New Wave" with his skinny tie, a fitting nod to the era from which the Cabbage Patch Kids first arose. Tonight, Addie and her CPK friends gathered around the Christmas tree for some pictures, and that's a prime opportunity for me to mention to all of you that these new 30th Anniversary Cabbage Patch Kids are a great gift idea.

30 Years of Cabbage Patch Kids

They're available just about anywhere, and unlike 1983, 2013 finds them in pretty good supply. Just be warned that the suggested price is right around $34.99, and that there still are folks scalping them at higher prices. For a great selection, check out my affiliate, Target.

A Cabbage Patch Christmas

Want even more CPK goodness? Check out this 2011 feature that I wrote about the long-out-of-print album, A CABBAGE PATCH CHRISTMAS (complete with how to get it now!).

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade as Publisher of The Rock Father Magazine, he joined Adventure Publishing Group as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider—a destination for all things pop culture. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 25 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

James and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, WGN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, BusinessWire, Babble, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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