• Tina Benitez-Eves

TIA Names 2014 Toy of the Year Nominees

Boom Boom BalloonSpin Master's Boom Boom Balloon
NEW YORK - Overlooking an ice skating rink at New York's Bryant Park, the Toy Industry Association (TIA) displayed its nominees for the 2014 Toy of the Year (TOTY) awards during a special preview. Winners will be announced during a ceremony on February 15 in New York City, which will help kick off the 2014 American International Toy Fair, February 16-19.

This year's nominees were chosen by a committee of play experts, journalists, academics, retailers and other toy experts from more than 520 submissions by 153 companies. For each of the 12 categories—Activity, Boy, E-Connected, Educational, Game, Girl, Infant/Toddler, Innovative, Outdoor, Preschool, Property and Specialty—seven nominees were chosen. The 2014 Toy of the Year nominees represent 68 products or properties from 41 companies.

Some toy companies received multiple nominees across different categories, including newcomer GoldieBlox (Educational, Innovative) and Rainbow Loom with three (Activity, Girl and Specialty), while other popular nominees like Lego and Skylanders picked up the most with five nominations. Some standout nominees included: Boom Boom Ballon (Game), a poke-the-ballon game, which pushes players to poke at a play ballon until it bursts; the Barbie Digital Makeover, which connects to any iPad for mess-free makeup sessions on screen; Zoomer, a remote-controlled pet Dalmation that sits, wags and barks on demand; and Nancy B's Science Club Moonscope, a telescope set with book, designed
Despicable Me 2TIA president, Carter Keithley, demos the Despicable Me 2 talking Minion Dave figure.
for girls. Some retro properties even made the cut with the Transformers Construct-Bots (Boy) and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Property).

"This year's TOTY finalists embody the innovative spirit of the toy industry and transport children to magical worlds through play," said Carter Keithley, president, TIA. "The TOTY Awards program also supports the philanthropic work of the Toy Industry Foundation, which partners with generous toy companies to bring brand new toys to deserving kids throughout the year.

Through January 13, 2014, toy fans can visit ToyAwards.org to vote for their favorite playthings and for each vote, they have a chance to win one of 12 TOTY prize packages featuring this year's nominees.

This year's Toy of Year nominees are:

Activity
Hot Wheels Car Maker by Mattel Inc.
Rainbow Loom by Choon's Design LLC
Crayola Melt ‘n Mold Factory by Crayola
Lego Minecraft by The Lego Group
Play-Doh Perfect Twist Ice Cream Playset by Hasbro Inc.
Glitzi Globes Glitzi Showcase by Moose Toys
Spirograph Deluxe Kit by Kahootz Toys

Boy
Battroborg 3-in-1 Battle Arena by Tomy
Despicable Me 2 Special Feature Minion Dave Talking Action Figure by Thinkway Toys
Disney Infinity by Disney

Barbie Digital MakeoverBarbie Digital Makeover by Mattel

Lego Legends of Chima by The Lego Group
Skylanders Swap Force by Activision Publishing Inc..
Transformers Construct-Bots by Hasbro, Inc.
Disney Planes U-Command Supercharged Dusty by Thinkway Toys

E-Connected
Lego Mindstorms EV3 by The Lego Group
Skylanders Swap Force by Activision Publishing Inc.
Disney Infinity by Disney
Barbie Digital Makeover by Mattel Inc.
LeapPad Ultra by LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc.
Kurio Touch 4s Handheld by Techno Source
Photo Mix & Mash by Crayola

Educational
GoldieBlox and the Spinning Machine by GoldieBlox Inc.
LeapPad Ultra by LeapFrog Enterprises Inc.
LeapReader by LeapFrog Enterprises Inc.
Lego Mindstorms EV3 by The Lego Group
Demolition Lab: Triple Blast Warehouse by SmartLab Toys
Magformers 62-Piece Set by Magformers LLC
Nancy B's Science Club MoonScope and Sky Gazer's Activity Journal by Educational Insights

Game
Boom Boom Balloon by Spin Master Ltd.
Chain Letters by Patch Products
Draw Something Party Game by Hasbro Inc.
Hedbanz Act Up by Spin Master
Settlers of Catan by Mayfair Games
Skylanders Swap Force by Activision Publishing
WordARound by ThinkFun

Girl
Disney Princess Palace Pets: Furry Tail Friends by Blip Toys
Flutterbye Fairy by Spin Master
Furreal Friends Cuddles, My Giggly Moneky by Hasbro
Lego Friends Heartlake High by The Lego Group
Monster High 13 Wishes Doll Assortment by Mattel
Nerf Rebelle Heartbreaker Bow by Hasbro Inc.
Rainbow Loom by Choon's Design LLC

BeginAgainBeginAgain's Parade A to Z Puzzle

Infant/Toddler
Big Hugs Elmo by Playskool
Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Crawl Around Car by Mattel
Go! Go! Smart Wheels Train Station Playset by VTech
Lamaze Franky the Hanky Whale by Tomy
Farm Mash-Up by LeapFrog Enterprises Inc.
Mirari Pop! Pop! Piano by Patch Products
Skwish Stix by Manhattan Toy

Innovative
Barbie Digital Makeover by Mattel
Battroborg 3-in-1 Battle Arena by Tomy
Flutterbye Fairy by Spin Master
GoldieBlox and the Spinning Machine by GoldieBlox.
Laser Maze by ThinkFun
Skylanders Swap Force by Activision Publishing
Zoomer by Spin Master

Outdoor
Crayola Washable Sidewalk Chalk by Crayola
Razor Crazy Cart by Razor

GoldieBloxGoldieBlox and the Spinning Machine
USA LLC
Sky Ripperz by Zing
Sky Viper Stunt Quadcopter by Skyrocket Toys
SkyTrix by Daydream Toy
Y Glider 3 in 1 by Yvolution
ZiggleT by Radio Flyer

Preschool
Big Hugs Elmo by Playskool
Dino Construction Company by Educational Insights
Doc McStuffins Get Better Check-Up Center by Just Play
Furreal Friends Cuddles, My Giggly Monkey by Hasbro
Go! Go! Smart Wheels Airport Playset by VTech
Shelby's Snack Shack GameTM by Educational Insights
Sofia the First Talking Sofia and Animal Friends by Mattel

Property
Despicable Me 2 (Universal Partnerships & Licensing)
Disney Junior's Doc McStuffins (Disney Consumer Products)
Disney Junior's Sofia the First (Disney Consumer Products)
Minecraft (Mojang AB)Toys of the Year
Monster High (Mattel)
Skylanders SWAP Force (Activision)
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (Nickelodeon)

Specialty
Animal Parade A to Z Puzzle by BeginAgain
Bunny Peek A Boo by Smart Toys and Games, Inc.
Laser Maze by ThinkFun
Nanoblocks Deluxe Space Shuttle by Ohio Art
Rainbow Loom by Choon's Design LLC
Spirograph Deluxe Kit by Kahootz Toys
Magnetic Wooden Blocks 42-Piece Set by Tegu

Tina BenitezTina Benitez-Eves | Business Editor, Gifts and Decorative Accessories
teves@giftsanddec.com

Tina covers the business of the gift/home decor and toy industry for Gifts and Decorative Accessories and Playthings. Also published in Men's Fitness, amNewYork, Wine Spectator and other publications.

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