Did you know that Saturday, November 10th is the 3rd Annual Neighborhood Toy Store Day?  For every $100 spent in local, independently-owned stores, $68 is returned to the community in the form of taxes, salaries, charitable contributions and more.  This is significant compared to the $43 when the same amount is purchased at a national chain.

On this special day, participating neighborhood toy stores will host in-store events and activities for the entire family in coordination with the non-profit organization the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA).  Neighborhood Toy Store Day encourages families to the fun of shopping locally and celebrates each toy store’s commitment to the community.

I love shopping at neighborhood toy stores – you can find cool toys that more often than not you can’t find at big chains, plus you have lots of fun discovering great toys for the kids.  Princess Nagger and Little Dude were thrilled when these showed up in the mail:

Both kids loved Feed the Woozle by By Peaceable Kingdom:

A Peaceable Kingdom cooperative game, where players play together against a common obstacle, not against each other. Helps kids experience shared decision-making, build self-esteem, work as a team and more. Ages 3-6.

It was fun to play along with the kids and watch them work as a team instead of competing against each other.

Both can’t wait until the weather warms up so they can try out the OgoSport RAQ:

This award-winning outdoor toy by OgoSport is sure to be a family favorite. Catch and throw balls up to 150 feet with soft, easy grip handles and adjustable Flux Ball. Ages 4+. 

Princess Nagger’s favorite was the Puppet-on-a-Stick™ by Educational Insights:

Oversized puppets on sticks from Educational Insights inspire dramatic play with silly faces, movable mouths, and endless possibilities! A great way to fuel your child’s imagination. Ages 4+. 

Princess Nagger plans to take them to school to wow all her friends.

Little Dude’s favorite was naturally the Kidoozie Deluxe Build-A-Road with Elevator by International Playthings LLC since he loves all things cars and tracks:

Kidoozie’s exciting new set features a car elevator for multilevel play. Little race car drivers love designing roadways for the two battery-powered cars with over 15′ of flexible track. A ramp, turn-around and 2 multi-directional connectors complete the set. Age 3+. 

Both kids have played together for hours with this set.

All the toys here were winners of ASTRA’s Best Toys for Kids 2012 award – and are perfect examples of they types and quality of toys available for sale at your neighborhood toy store.

The Benefits of Supporting an Independent Toy Store Near You:

Next time you’re in the market for a new toy, consider a trip to the neighborhood toy store. Supporting independent retailers not only fosters a sense of community, it provides real benefits to consumers and the neighborhoods they live in. Here’s a closer look at the top 5 benefits of buying local:

  1. Economic stability
    Spending your money at an independent retail store supports the local economy. Local businesses create jobs, fund city services through tax dollars and promote neighborhood development.
  2. Community development
    Local businesses foster community well-being by building strong neighborhoods, sustaining communities, and contributing more to local causes. Not only do these stores add unique character to the local neighborhood, they increase the quality of life for residents and contribute to the value of homes in the area. In addition, local ownership means local decision making by people who live and work in the community and are therefore personally invested in its success.
  3. Reduced environmental impact
    Local stores help sustain vibrant, compact, walkable town centers, which in turn are essential to reducing sprawl, automobile use, habitat loss, and air and water pollution. Neighborhood stores require less travel for consumers, which decrease traffic congestion and carbon usage.
  4. A diverse product selection
    An abundance of small locally owned businesses, each selecting its own product mix, guarantees a much wider range of product choices for everyone in the community. In addition, independent toy stores tend to carry many of the high-quality, boutique and specialty products not typically found at big box stores.
  5. Better customer service
    Small business owners are committed to keeping customers happy. They tend to tailor their product offerings to meet the needs of the community, host local events and create incentive programs for loyal shoppers.

Adapted in part from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, a national nonprofit organization working to rebuild local economies.  To learn more, visit www.newrules.org/retail.

Visit www.yourneighborhoodtoystore.org to find local stores near you participating in the 3rd Annual Neighborhood Toy Story Day.  The Holidays are right around the corner – might as well get some shopping done and support independent businesses in your community in one fell swoop.

Do you make it a point to shop local?



Note: I received the cool toys shown above to facilitate my review. No other compensation was received implied or otherwise. All opinions are mine and not influenced by any outside sources.  See my Disclosure Policy here.


  1. These would be a great annual convent you have shared. Most kids loves to have toys and I think that it can help them in order to be more intelligent and competent to school.
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