News & Interviews

Over 400 Interviews, Articles and Stories! Over 350 authors! 5 Newsletters!

Newsletters for industry, consumers, social media influencers and educators cover many aspects of play and

the interesting stories behind the playthings we love! 

Our newest project to celebrate the People of Play to go live soon! Read all about it HERE.  

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Business of Play News

Industry News - interviews, news, information about get-togethers we're hosting and more.

Importance of Play News

For consumers and anyone interested in toys and games and 

meeting the people behind the the products.

 

Legends and Legacies Profiles

There are many great stories and then there are those which are EPIC! 

ChiTAG White Papers

Interested in getting into the toy and game industry?

Our Inventor & Innovation Conferences Experts weigh in on industry topics. 

THE TAGIE AWARD NOMINATIONS KICKS OFF WITH ANNOUNCEMENT OF A NEW NAME, NEW CATEGORY AND NEW VIRTUAL

Press Contact: Emily Blosser emily@brilliantprm.com 404.434.2103 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE THE ANNUAL OPENING OF THE TAGIE AWARD NOMINATIONS KICKS OFF WITH ANNOUNCEMENT OF A NEW NAME, NEW CATEGORY AND NEW VIRTUAL PROGRAM FOR 2020 CHICAGO, IL (July 1, 2020) -- In the spirit and theme of “Celebration,” the TAGIE Awards will boldly continue this year by expanding its platform honoring the best and brightest innovators, designers and marketers in the toy and game industry. As nominations for the annual TAGIE Awards open today, The Chicago Toy & Game Group is announcing a number of changes to make the toy and game industry’s preeminent design, innovation and marketing awards bigger and better than ev

Person of the Week: Lisa Orman of KidStuff PR

When KidStuff PR founder Lisa Orman started her PR agency 26 years ago, she was becoming a mother for the first time and was faced with educating herself about the many services and products available for children and families. She discovered that many of the most innovative and wonderful products were made by smaller companies, so she decided to dedicate herself to helping these smaller players in the toy & game industry build awareness among consumers via media. That’s still her passion and joy. Her singular focus on this has paid off for small and medium specialty toy manufacturers and retailers, and dozens of companies attribute some of their success and growth to their partnership with

Big G Creative - Making Games in the Time of Corona

(Shannon, Alex and Steve) When the coronavirus started and the world shut down, we were busier than ever developing games from home. Because our operations team already worked remotely (Rob Stevens and Alex Kimerling in Nashville, Steven Anne in Chicago, me in Michigan), working from home wasn’t new for us. However, working from home, with our kids also at home, was definitely a new challenge. We quickly learned how to balance work with homeschooling, and having our kids at home turned out to be a blessing in disguise. Just like that, we had in-house playtesters at our disposal 24/7. Our kids played an important role in developing our 2020 games and helped with every aspect of game design fr

Dylan Collins - How Generation C will reshape the toy industry

How Generation C will reshape the toy industry Although relatively short in duration, Covid-19’s impact will define a generation of kids. For the age band most impacted (6-16), the pandemic and its effects will define their generation, jolting them into a new way of thinking, acting, playing and socializing. Some of these behaviors are an acceleration of trends which were already in motion but others are completely new. Welcome to Generation C. All disasters tend to make that generation of kids grow up faster. However, other changes are more subtle and every brand should pay attention to what’s happening: Generation C has influence and feels empowered. Like Covid-19 itself, we are just begin

Tim Walsh of Roo Games - Focus on the Journey

How did you get into the Toy and Game industry? I began my toy career at Patch Products (now PlayMonster) as its VP of Product Development & Marketing in 1992 and was instrumental in taking that company from $3 million in sales to over $23 million in 7 years. My game designs and co-designs for that company included TriBond, Blurt, Mad Gab, ’N Sync Backstage Pass, and others. What are you working on now? I just co-founded a new game company called Roo Games. 4 years ago, Dennis Callaghan and I founded a game company called Getta1Games, which is doing well overseas. We are in 12 countries, with strong sales, but we we struggled in the US. So this year we took our 6 best-selling games and re-b

Caitlin Gutekunst talks about Creativity, Inc., the Company of the Week for the Bloom Report

About Creativity, Inc Creativity, Inc is one of the most prolific design and development studios working in the toys and entertainment industry today. Since 1998, we have helped produce an estimated 7,000 products, from interactive toys to mobile apps, games, smart home devices, and voice-first app experiences. That’s roughly 200-300 projects each year! Creativity helps our partners engage and delight millions of children and families worldwide through our work. Many of these products have found phenomenal success in the toy industry, earning 130+ TOTY nominations, 37 TOTY category winners, and 5 best overall TOTY awards. Creativity has also helped our partners receive recognition outside

Lana Li - Creator of Mythical Slyme

What are you working on now? We are working on a spooky fun Halloween themed line for Mythical Slyme for this season. It includes mysterious and mythical creatures combined with amazing colors and glitters in the compounds, all appropriately themed. What’s your workspace setup like? I'm usually working on many things at the same time so I have a really big monitor which occupies most of my desk but keeps my productivity on point. I also have a mood board with all my projects – past, present, and future. What is the most rewarding part of your job? I love when young people approach me on social media or at live shows (I miss those!) to ask what has inspired me over the years, and some of the

Richard North -  This is Wow! Stuff!

This is Wow! Stuff Our tagline is Great Brands Brought to Life! We partner with licensed brands and we work until our brains hurt to create toys that are really, really, really innovative, on brand and in universe - always! With 2 TOTY award nominations and a TOTY award win in 2020 and a TAGIE nomination in 2015, we are headquartered in the UK. We have excellent reach throughout Europe and while we have direct to retail sales in the USA we are always looking for North American partners to broaden our business. See more here; www.wowstuff.com From Telescopes to Toys, from the UK to the USA My time during this pandemic has largely been spent on setting up ToyAid.org in the UK with my co-founde

Company-of-the-Week: Chris Tidwell on Magformers

As I write to provide some explanation of what the Magformers company is about, it would be a miss to not recognize and thank Phil Bloom for over two decades of devoted support, stories, insight, stock prices (ugh!) and features of the industry that provides us our livelihood. Thank you, Mr. Bloom! Thank you to Mary Couzin, her board, and staff at CHITAG for the opportunity to tell some good news, to talk about toys and how children’s lives can be shaped through the power of play. We also appreciate the opportunity to be part of the Spring 2020 Young Inventor’s Challenge currently going on. It is great to be along side Mattel, Scholastic, Astra during a time when many school children ha

Leslie Scott - Designed to Play

(photo credit: Sue Macpherson) I’m a board game designer. I became a board game designer in 1982, and at the same time I founded a business to publish my first game, Jenga, which I launched at The London Toy & Hobby Fair in 1983. And so began a long career in the business of play, and so began my interest in Business, and in Play. Leslie Scott Associates, the business I founded 38 years ago is alive and kicking, though it looks quite different today. It morphed into Oxford Games Ltd along the way and we published over forty games in its first 20 years, all designed in-house. We continue to re-print two or three of the best of these games under the OGL label today, but we are not really any l

Philip Bloom - The Man in the Iconic Sweater Reveals Almost All

What exactly do you do in the industry? After many years as a retailer (Bargain City, Yankee Dep. Stores, Circus World Toy Stores, Toys R Us), for the past 22 years, provided the Toy Industry with all our industry news and information via “the Bloom Report”, a website that has over 8,000 subscribers in 29 countries. What is your claim to fame in the industry? Fame? No fame! Just a desire to be a part of a great industry and provide a meaningful service. Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry? I was a starving college student in the 1950’s working my way through the University of Toledo (Ohio). Got a part-time job with an early version of a discount store, and they said “you’r

Micha Hertzano - "Imagination more important than knowledge..."

What exactly do you do in the industry? Tough question….in practice am the typist , telephone operator, forklift driver, export manager yet funny enough on me business card it says ‘CEO’ . What is your claim to fame in the industry? I would say my ambition and dedication, making Rummikub one of the most enjoyed and played board game around the globe, including many celebrities! Why and how did you get into the Toy and Game industry? Simply , born into it ! My late father was an entrepreneur and had a great vision . He started his own production in our ‘back yard’. I was at an early age helping out painting and packing games, so I guess it’s in my DNA. And I also have a great love for board

Ishkabibbles - Just for Fun!  

Play in Education News

For educators, librarians, homeschooling families and parents

who are interested in using play to aid learning.

ChiTAG Group Media Reach:

​Newsletters Email Subscribers

All Industry 40,000+

Educator 135,0000+

Inventor 15,000+

Consumer 15,000+

Blogger, Social Media Influencer 5,500+ email; 6,500+ handles

Scouts (Boy & Girl) 2,100+

Media List 7,500+

Combined Direct Newsletter Reach 220,000

Newsletter, In-Person and Social Media Reach

Newsletters 217,000

Postal Mail Addresses All Industry 33,000+

Twitter ChiTAGWeek 15,600+

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Facebook Mary Couzin 1,800+

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Pinterest Mary Couzin/Chicago Toy & Game Fair 1,900+

LinkedIn Toy, Game, Play Innovators Group 3,000+

LinkedIn Mary Couzin 18,500+

Events Attendance 35,000+

ChiTAG Group Reach 325,000+