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The Few, The Proud…The Award-Winning Toys

Who Made the Cut This Year?

By Alison Marek and Julie L. Jones

Thousands of products are introduced to the toy industry every year, but only a limited number are good enough, playable enough and innovative enough to garner an award.

In addition to issuing TDmonthly Awards, TDmonthly Magazine regularly asks manufacturers to present their award winners to our readers so that retailers can quickly identify products with great potential and manufacturers can learn and be inspired by others' successes. Here are the most recent responses:

Bendaroos® by ALLSTAR PRODUCTS GROUP

Bendaroos® by ALLSTAR PRODUCTS GROUPThese reusable building sticks are made from colored string coated with a special wax. Flexible Bendaroos building sticks are designed to adhere to virtually every household surface, and are easily removed to be used again and again. "Bendaroos' durability sets it apart from competitors. Bendaroos reusable materials allow kids to play for hours. Also, since Bendaroos do not break or wear, parents need not worry about buying replacement sets," Lindsay Durr, account coordinator at 360 Public Relations, told TDmonthly on behalf of Bendaroos. Launch date: August 2009. This product received a 2009 Outstanding Product iParenting Media Award.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $5.99; Age: 3 to 12) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Meebie™ by ORKID TOYS

Meebie™ by ORKID TOYSMeebie is a toy developed for play, with therapeutic benefits. Designed as a globally appealing tool for expression and learning, it may be used in educational settings, play therapy, speech/language pathology, occupational therapy, social work, counseling and at home. The soft, furry Meebie measures 21" from head to seat and is fully washable. It may be used to express emotion, using the interchangeable pieces; comfort a child with separation anxiety, or one who has been hurt; engage children who are reluctant to express or participate; or teach specific emotions and emotional understanding. "Meebie’s 37 beautifully embroidered pieces can be arranged and rearranged in any number of ways, conveying all emotions," Lisa Johnson, co-owner of Orkid Toys, told TDmonthly. It was named among Dr. Toy's Best Products from 2007 to 2009. Launch date: September 15, 2005.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $79.00; Age: 3 and up) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Gentle Giraffe On The Go by CLOUD B

Gentle Giraffe On The Go by CLOUD BGentle Giraffe On The Go helps recreate sleep time routines by bringing familiar soothing sounds while away from home. Gentle Giraffe’s unique Serengeti sounds aim to take a child on a magical journey while effortlessly transforming unknown surroundings to a more familiar environment. It features four peaceful sounds, push-button sound selection with volume control, and two sleep-timer options, plus more, and may be used for all ages. Gentle Giraffe On The Go is part of the Cloud B Endangered Species Series, which helps bring awareness to animal friends who need our attention. A portion of every purchase goes to Conservation International. This product received a 2009 NAPPA Honors award, a 2009 iParenting Media Award for Outstanding Product in the Toy Category, a 2009 Creative Child Top Choice of the Year Award in the Travel-Soothing Sleep Aids for Kids Category, a 2009 Seal of Approval from the National Parenting Center, and a 2009 Dr. Toy Best Vacation Children's Product Award. Launch date: June 2009.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $24; Age: All Ages) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Award Winning – Pastel Scarf Mini Pack by ARTS EDUCATION IDEAS

Award Winning – Pastel Scarf Mini Pack by ARTS EDUCATION IDEASThis pack comes with 12, 27" square scarves — two of each of the following colors: lavender, medium blue, lime green, yellow, peach and pink, and includes an instruction/informational insert and a reusable plastic hanging storage bag. Launch date: 1996.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $22.50; Age: All Ages) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Award Winning – Rainbow Scarf Mini Pack by ARTS EDUCATION IDEAS

Award Winning – Rainbow Scarf Mini Pack by ARTS EDUCATION IDEASThis kit includes 12, 27" square scarves — two of each of the following colors: purple, royal blue, kelly green, yellow, orange and purple, plus an instructional/informational insert and a reusable hanging plastic resealable storage bag. Launch date: 1996.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $22.50; Age: All Ages) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Multi-Award Winning – My Many Colored Days (Parent Scarf Kit) by ARTS EDUCATION IDEAS

Multi-Award Winning – My Many Colored Days (Parent Scarf Kit) by ARTS EDUCATION IDEASThis kit includes 10, 27" square scarves in 10 colors — one of each of the following: purple, royal blue, gray, black, orange, red, kelly green, brown, pink and yellow. It also comes with an instructional insert, the "My Many Colored Days" book by Dr. Seuss and the IDEAS Music Colors CD. "We also provide durable and reusable plastic bags for storage as well as Velcro to hang the scarves in a special place, where they can be put away easily and beautifully," Rosanne Jessen, marketing associate for arts education IDEAS, told TDmonthly. Launch date: 2008.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $29.99; Age: All Ages) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Crayola Undersea Adventures Color Stories Interactive DVD by SCREENLIFE

Crayola Undersea Adventures Color Stories Interactive DVD by SCREENLIFECrayola Color Stories are interactive coloring activities that tell the stories of Jerome, Pedro, Sadie and others from the Undersea Adventures world. Kids progress through the story by coloring on their pages along with the characters on the screen, learning as they go. Activities are randomized so that kids can play Crayola Color Stories again and again. "Interactive DVD story and coloring activities keep children engaged and entertained while they learn," Anita Lavine, director of public relations for Screenlife, told TDmonthly. This product received a 2009 iParenting Media Award and a 2009 Creative Child Award. Launch date: June 2009.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $19.99; Age: 3 to 7) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


X9 Rocket by PLAYHUT INC.

X9 Rocket by PLAYHUT INC.Kids can blast off on a cosmic journey in the Playhut X9 Rocket play structure, which is comprised of a large, shuttle-shaped play hut and two 20” tunnels. It has multiple tunnel ports for crawl-through fun and structure expansion, and EZ Twist technology allows for instant set-up and quick-fold down for convenient storage. It received a 2009 Outstanding Products iParenting Media Award. Launch date: July 2009.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $29.99; Age: 3 to 8) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


Disney Princess Adventure Hut by PLAYHUT INC.

Disney Princess Adventure Hut by PLAYHUT INC.The Disney Princess Adventure Hut is designed to be a magical getaway for any little princess. This versatile play tent is comprised of a large play hut and 4’ tunnel. It has multiple tunnel ports for crawl-through fun and structure expansion, mesh windows for peek-through entertainment, a flap door entrance for easy accessibility, and bright, bold Disney Princess graphics. EZ Twist technology allows for instant set-up and quick-fold down for convenient storage. It received a 2009 Outstanding Products iParenting Media Award. Launch date: July 2009.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $29.99; Age: 3 to 8) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]


safe-T-seat by IBERT INC.

safe-T-seat by IBERT INC.The Safe-T-Seat, created for children 12 months to 4 years, is designed to offer a better center of gravity than other child bike seats and is easy to install. "The patented mounting system is much easier than other front-mounted seats on the market," Kelly Eissinger, president of iBert Inc., told TDmonthly. It received a 2007 Creative Child Magazine Top Choice Award. Launch date: May 25, 2005.


 8/19/2009 (Price: $94.95; Age: 1 to 4) [Add to my Inquiry Basket][?]




Following are some of the programs represented in TDmonthly.com's section of award winners: Dr. Toy, iParenting Media Awards, TIA T.O.T.Y., Oppenheim Toy Portfolio, The National Parenting Center, and Parents' Choice Awards.

You may also access TDmonthly's review section to see which products earned 5 TD stars.

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