National Toy Hall of Fame Weekend November 6 & 7

Natonal Toy Hall of Fame News Release
One Manhattan Square Rochester, NY 14607 585-263-2700

October 21, 2010

For Immediate Release

Contact: Susan Trien, 585-410-6359,

Shane Rhinewald, 585-410-6365,


World’s Largest Etch A Sketch® Toy
Featured at Weekend Celebration
at National Museum of Play on November 6 & 7

Roll over, Big Wheel®! Make room, Barbie®! The 44 toys currently in the National Toy Hall of Fame at the Strong will soon be joined by two new toy inductees to be announced at a special ceremony held on Thursday, November 4, at 10:30 a.m. A National Toy Hall of Fame Weekend Celebration follows at the National Museum of Play on Saturday, November 6, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, November 7, from 1 to 4 p.m.

In honor of the weekend celebration, the museum will host the world’s largest Etch A Sketch toy, a working replica more than eight-feet tall with a more than six-foot-wide screen created in by the Ohio Art Company to commemorate 50 years of Etch A Sketch. (The giant Etch A Sketch will be on view Thursday, November 4, through Monday, November 8.)

Following are the highlights of the weekend celebration:

See the World’s Largest Etch A Sketch! This working replica requires two users to turn the knobs and create a drawing on the giant screen. Well-known for “shaking” the screen to erase the image, the over-size Etch A Sketch features a motor that pivots the toy to clear the screen for the next user. The finished toy took more than 100 hours to fabricate and was done almost entirely by hand at The Ohio Art Company’s headquarters in Bryan, Ohio.

Meet Mr. Etch A Sketch (Tim George) whose motto is “shake my hand, not my work!”  Watch as George demonstrates his amazing Etch A Sketch artistry at various times throughout each day.  Enjoy a display of George’s incredibly detailed Etch A Sketch masterpieces, including celebrity portraits, wildlife, and famous national landmarks.

Join in the hula hoopla. Play with Etch A Sketch and other classic Hall of Fame toys such as the Hula Hoop®, Jack-in-the-Box, jigsaw puzzles, Lincoln Logs®, Mr. Potato Head®, Raggedy Ann and Andy™, Slinky®, teddy bears, and View-Master®.

Reminisce about your favorite toys at 1 p.m. on Saturday, with Scott Eberle, the Strong’s Vice President for Interpretation and author of Classic Toys of the National Toy Hall of Fame, a lavishly illustrated, coffee-table compendium of photos, anecdotes, and fascinating historical facts. Autographed copies of the book—a great holiday gift idea!—will be available at the museum’s two shops and can also be purchased at Wegmans,, Barnes & Noble, and Borders.  

Donate a new, unwrapped toy to the Pirate Toy Fund. Help bring a smile to the faces of other kids in the community with your donation.

All weekend events are included with general museum admission fees.


About the National Toy Hall of Fame at the Strong

The National Toy Hall of Fame at the Strong recognizes toys that have engaged and delighted multiple generations, inspiring them to learn, create, and discover through play. Criteria for induction include: Icon-status (the toy is widely recognized, respected, and remembered); Longevity (the toy is more than a passing fad and has enjoyed popularity over multiple generations); Discovery (the toy fosters learning, creativity, or discovery through play); and Innovation (the toy profoundly changed play or toy design). 

The 12 final nominees being considered for induction are: Cabbage Patch Kids®, Chess, Dollhouse, Dominoes, Dungeons & Dragons®, The Game of Life®, Hot Wheels,®, Lite Brite®, Magic 8 Ball®, Playing Cards, Pogo Stick, and Rubik’s Cube®. Only two of the 12 finalists will make it into the prestigious hall, joining such toy luminaries as Barbie®, Mr. Potato Head®, and the Atari® 2600 Game System. The two winners will be inducted at a special ceremony Thursday, November 4, at 10:30 a.m.

For more information about the hall, visit


Museum Hours:

Monday–Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; 

Sunday, noon to 5 p.m.


Admission Fees:

General Admission (does not include admission to Dancing Wings Butterfly Garden®):

Adults $11; Seniors $10; Children (2–15) $9; Children younger than two free; Strong members free.


Admission to Dancing Wings Butterfly Garden®:

General Admission fee plus $1.50 for members, $3 for nonmembers; Children under 2 free. Entry is by timed ticket only. Please call 585-263-2700 to reserve and purchase tickets.

Parking:  Free parking is available at the museum for all guests on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note that, on high visitation days, the museum lot may reach capacity early in the day. If space is not available on site at the time of your visit, you will be directed to additional parking at neighboring municipal garages (fees may apply).