Not long ago, I walked into Walmart and found my attention immediately grabbed by a colorful display that reached out to me and said, "Come here, Dear Consumer! Come, Rock Father! Explore my explosion of color!" Now, it didn't actually have a voice, but I'm anthropomorphizing it anyway, if only because it got me into trouble when I came home. This display, prominently-featured at the front of the Back-to-School department, was touting a new line of "Colors for Every Occasion" by CRAYOLA, and damn if I didn't let the "Collect Them All! (While Supplies Last)" tagline grab the crayon-loving kid in me. But it's for my children.
The folks at CRAYOLA have been busy plotting their 110th Birthday Celebration, and tonight they hit The Rock Father with some details on how YOU can be a part of it. Crews have been hard at work on transforming the former Crayola factory in Easton, PA into an all-new CRAYOLA EXPERIENCE - "the world's only interactive Crayola family attraction." While the construction workers have had some adventures of their own (unearthing bones and a coin dated 1788), the Original 8 Crayola Crayons are on a Birthday Adventure that will end with one lucky family winning a trip to the Grand Opening on May 24, 2013.
Originally posted on February 10, 2013... interestingly enough, a year later (2/16/2014) and Crayola has a different company handling PR for Toy Fair 2014 (it's Edelman now) and it's all back to "Mom." Pretty safe to assume that Crayola is steering the ship on this and not the PR folks.
UPDATED: On 2/19/2013, a rep from Coyne PR on behalf of Crayola sent me a nice message that included the following:
"Your post was very poignant and makes some great points. Dads do play an important role in raising their kids and our products are the tools to help Moms and Dads, along with Grandparents, care givers, etc. foster creativity and inspire imagination in children. As we move forward, we will look at how we present our information to be sure we are inclusive of all individuals who care about kids and support raising creatively inspired children."
ORIGINAL POST: It's Sunday night, and as most folks are watching the GRAMMYS (my wife included), I'm sitting here skimming through hundreds of press releases and product sheets rolling into Rock Father HQ from the American International Toy Fair in New York City. While I wish I'd gone this year, getting the news via email and the wires is the next best thing, though I have to be a little picky about what I cover here on The Rock Father as time is something I could use more of. One thing striking me as I check out the media materials from a lot of toy makers is how archaic their views of playtime, parenting, and family structure still are. Yes, despite all the strides made in the last year about "gender neutrality" (a huge media push, too) and the change in family structure, the old stereotypes are back this weekend in New York, and the charge is being led by some disappointing offenders.
The folks at CrayolaStore.com are getting in on the Black Friday action with a variety of money-saving offers perfect for readers wishing to pick up some great Crayola items for the kids this Holiday Season. One of my personal favorites is the opportunity to create Your Own Custom Box of 64 Crayola Crayons. The full list of deals can be found below...