Chris Bensch

Hurray for Inventors!

Toy and game inventors deserve their time in the spotlight, according to the annual TAGIE (Toy and Game Inventors Expo) Awards. Bestselling books and hit songs earn authors and singers publicity as well as financial rewards. But create a million-selling toy or game and practically no one knows your name. The TAGIE Awards honor the people behind the playthings, celebrating their creations and the fun they’ve brought to our lives.

Halloween Hoopla

Some of my Strong colleagues show off their Halloween spirit.I’ve got my Halloween candy ready for the trick-or-treaters and a plan for how I’m going to decorate my front door with construction paper bats, but it was still a bit of a surp

Research on Roller Coasters

Sometimes, when you work as a curator at the National Museum of Play, you need to put down the scholarly books about play and head out to do a little hands-on research. There's nothing like ratcheting up the first steep incline of a roller coaster and then screaming down the drop on the other side to prove what's fun about amusement parks.

The Stick Stands Out

Excitement was building at the start of November as we prepared to induct three new toys-the baby doll, the skateboard, and the stick-into the National Toy Hall of Fame. I'd studied up on the toys' histories, gathered my anecdotes, and felt prepared to explain to anyone who asked the all compelling reasons why they should join the 38 classic toys already in the Hall.