Chicago Toy & Game Week Rings in the Holiday Season November 17-20, 2016 with a fun-filled weekend of activities open to the public and perfect for the whole family.
CHICAGO (October 4, 2016) ― Gear up for a week of fun, because Chicago Toy & Game Group is announcing a lineup of blockbuster events for kids and their families this November in the week leading up to Thanksgiving. Presenting a host of industry events throughout the week, the Chicago Toy & Game Group invites the public to attend play-focused festivities including the Innovation and Play in Education Conferences, Toy & Game Innovation (TAGIE) Awards Gala featuring PlayCHIC, the haute couture fashion show and the 14th annual Chicago Toy and Game Fair (ChiTAG) with the Blogger and Media Breakfast Event, Young Inventor Challenge and Young Tech Challenge all happening at Navy Pier (600 E. Grand Avenue, Chicago) from Thursday, November 17, 2016 through Sunday, November 20, 2016. For tickets and more information for all events, visit www.chitag.com.
The headline event, ChiTAG, is the largest toy and game fair in the U.S. open to the general public, offering a weekend of fun-filled discovery and interactive events. Tickets are $14 for adults and $7 for children, available now at chitag.com/fair. Fair hours are November 19, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and November 20, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
ChiTAG brings together consumers, families, inventors, manufacturers, retailers, educators, hobbyists, social media influencers and the media – at the beginning of the holiday season – to play, celebrate, discover, support and promote the creation of toys and games.
“We are excited to bring ChiTAG back for its fourteenth year, giving attendees exclusive hands-on experience with the newest, hottest toys and games of the holiday season,” said Mary Couzin, Founder and President, Chicago Toy & Game Group. “Kids will also have the awesome opportunity to test brand new products from leading toy companies, and meet inventors from all over the world who created them. Plus our guests have access to all the amazing amenities on Navy Pier and can plan to make a whole day or even whole weekend out of it.”
The weekend of fun at Navy Pier kicks off Thursday and continues throughout ChiTAG, with additional signature events presented by Chicago Toy & Game Group, including:
Innovation Conferences – November 17-18, 2016: The Chicago Toy & Game Group Innovation Conference has a line-up of noteworthy speakers. This year’s keynote speakers include Kathleen Campisano (VP GMM Toys, Games, Hobby & Collectibles at Barnes & Noble), Andy Roo Forrest (Partner, Forrest-Pruzan Creative), Jim McCafferty (Owner, JMP Creative), Tim Walsh (Chief Playmaker, The Playmakers), and Michelle Thaller (Assistant Director of Science, NASA Headquarters). The conference is held on Thursday, November 17, 2016 and Friday, November 18, 2016 at Navy Pier. Both days kick off with a Continental Breakfast at 7 a.m. with speakers beginning at 8 a.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit chitag.com/conferences.
TAGIE Awards Gala – November 18, 2016: The 9th Annual Toy and Game Inventor of the Year (TAGIE) Awards Gala is an elegant evening taking place at the Navy Pier Grand Ballroom in Chicago on Friday, November 18, 2016 from 6 to 11 p.m. The TAGIE Awards ceremony brings together toy industry leaders from around the world for a night of celebration to pay homage to masters of invention in categories such as Toy Designer of the Year and Rising Star Designer. The gala ends with the playCHIC Fashion Show. Tickets are $250 (includes playCHIC ticket). For more information, sponsorship opportunities and to purchase tickets, visit chitag.com/tagies.
PlayCHIC Fashion Show – November 18, 2016: Haute couture fashion designers team up with playful toy and game brands to create delightfully stunning and fresh runway looks. The 5th Annual playCHIC Fashion Show takes place Friday, November 18, 2016 at 8 p.m. directly following the TAGIE Awards Gala. Tickets are $50. For more information, to purchase tickets or to sign on as a sponsor, visit chitag.com/playchic.
ChiTAG Fair — November 19-20, 2016: The 14th annual Chicago Toy and Game Fair (ChiTAG) is a fun event for the entire family to celebrate play, right before the holidays! Not only can families test out new products for the holidays, but they can also walk inside the World’s Largest PomPom, be a part of Twister’s 50th Birthday, meet toy & game inventors, watch Ben’s Giant Bubble Show, compete or watch the Illinois State Yoyo contest, and attend the IllumiCraft STEM-based Craft Party. Kids can also enjoy ride-on fun and test out tot-sized Teslas. The ChiTAG Fair is the largest toy and game fair open to the public in North America on November 19, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and November 20, 2016 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The fair will open 1 hour early both days for families with special needs.
Blogger and Media Breakfast Event – November 19, 2016: Media and Social Media Influencers from around the country bring their families to be entertained, hear presentations, try products, receive product samples directly from sponsors as well as enjoy early access to the Fair with a surprise event just for them. For more information or to register for the Breakfast, visit chitag.com/media-and-blogger-breakfast.
Play in Education – November 19, 2016: The Chicago Toy & Game Group has been sharing the importance of play in education for nearly ten years. The Play in Education Conference is on Saturday, November 19, 2016 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. This year’s keynote speaker is Leslie Scott, the inventor of Jenga. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit chitag.com/educators-track.
Young Inventor Challenge – November 19, 2016: Children from the ages of 6 to 18 are encouraged to use their creativity to make and showcase their own original toy & game inventions. This free experience provides an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the play indus