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It’s hard to believe that it’s been a year since I got to take my first trip to the annual Toy Fair in New York City, but the 2012 version is just around the corner. My fellow GeekMoms will have to wander those wide aisles without me this year, since I no longer live on the same coast as the big event.
I’ve had the Toy Fair on my mind a lot lately because of something I discovered there last February. Because I have older kids, I hit some of the booths I knew would interest the gang that sits around my kitchen table. Of course there was a deep inspection of the Lego booth (where I met an amazing Master Builder named Steve). And every company that offered any kind of remote control or robot device had my full attention.
But one booth where I didn’t expect to find anything relevant, was the Playmobil booth. I found myself gravitating to it, mainly because we have collected Playmobil accessories for a decade and a half. It was one of the sets I deliberately started collecting, making it easy for long distance relatives to buy for my kids, when holidays and birthdays rolled around. I loved the variety and detail of every set and was thrilled when Target started carrying it, so I no longer had to make the trek to a specialty toy store.
But as my kids grew older, the huge tub of Playmobil started spending more time on the toy room shelf. My youngest, although in the prime age bracket for such toys, rarely took them out, since his three older siblings were playing with bigger kid toys and he didn’t want to be left out. Occasionally I’d pull the tub down for a younger, visiting friend, and it never failed that I’d discover my ‘too big’ kids down on the floor, setting up scenes, long after the friend had gone home. Soon it would find its spot, once again, on the toy room shelf, and I’d go back to believing that Playmobil is for little kids.
Until the 2011 Toy Fair.