Working the many toy and gift shows that take place during the first quarter is always hard work, regardless of whether you are a manufacturer, a retailer or a sales representative. But when ASTRA plans to be there, our members make it fun!
The ASTRA booth at ToyFest West become a gathering spot. Current members stopped by to learn more about member programs and benefits and shared input on many of the challenges and opportunities facing our industry. Prospective members were directed to our booth by members and told, “You’ve got to talk to ASTRA!” (Side note: ASTRA members are the best!) To add a little fun in the middle of day, we provided a coffee and donut break. The booth was the place to be at 1:30 on Monday afternoon when the donuts and coffee arrived. For the ASTRA staff, the time flew by! Seeing our members and welcoming new members to the ASTRA community (like our new friends Kidz Games and envision kiDZ, pictured above) made it a great show.
Next up on the schedule was ASTRA’s Meet, Visit and Play at the Minneapolis Mart. Retailers, sales representatives and manufacturers stopped by the ASTRA tables to play games, have some pizza and beverages and enjoy the camaraderie of toy industry colleagues. In addition to featuring the 2017 ASTRA Exclusives from Neat-Oh/Totum, Plan Toys and Think Fun, the Meet, Visit and Play sponsors Smart Toys and Games, Blue Orange Games, Jax Ltd and Play Monster provided games that got us laughing – despite the long day of work that preceded the event. A good time was had by all.
Enjoy four full days of connection and fun at ASTRA’s Marketplace & Academy! Join the largest gathering of the specialty toy family in Philadelphia, June 25-28.
Sue Warfield is the Director of Member Relations at ASTRA. With more than 30 years of experience in the retail and toy business, Sue offers insight into industry trends and tips and works to connect the retailers, sales representatives, manufacturers and affiliates in the specialty toy retailing arena. Contact Sue at email@example.com.