Pulsar

Pulsar

Introduced by Mattel in 1977, Pulsar was a fourteen-inch plastic action figure in the vein of the Six Million Dollar Man and Visible Man. And when we say “vein”, we mean it. Let's take a look back at this self-described "ultimate man of adventure," shall we? Continue reading...

Lawn Darts

Lawn Darts

Every once in a while, a toy is released with all of the good intentions of the world, and yet, no matter how popular it may become, an unforeseen safety issue arises which requires that it be removed from store shelves. Few, however, have the dubious distinction of being outlawed completely, which brings us to Lawn Darts - those popular ground-piercing projectiles that sent more than a few tykes to the emergency room back in the day. Let’s take a look. Continue reading...

Mystery Date

Mystery Date

Oh, not a dud! Please don’t let it be a dud! When that little white door opened, you wanted to see the man of your dreams, a studly skier, a dashing dancer in a tux, a beachgoing babe – anything but the dreaded dud. And should Prince Charming be ready to greet you behind door number one, you best be prepared. And yet, with all of these stressful possibilities, there was nary a slumber party around in the 60s that didn’t include a rousing game of Mystery Date on the itinerary. Continue reading...

Hats Off

Hats Off

Humans sure have a fascination with flinging projectiles through the air at one another. From the historical catapults to the modern-era spitball, it just seems to be in our genes. It’s no wonder that a board game that allowed such behavior would find its way into the hearts of people everywhere. Now, granted, you really weren’t supposed to fling the game pieces at each other. But for most that played Kohner’s Hat’s Off board game (introduced in the late 60s) - once you looked across the dining room table and saw the potential target of your sister’s exposed forehead … well, let’s just say the temptation was often just a bit too strong to resist. Continue reading...

Model Rockets

Model Rockets

Kids have loved building models of transportation vehicles for generations, but many of these creations, too delicate to actually play with, end up gathering dust on a shelf. When model rockets arrived on the scene in 1960, however, they offered a far more exciting experience. Finally, a model that could perform as it was intended, soaring ferociously towards the heavens, only to safely return to earth, thanks to a handy parachute hidden within the nosecone. As a result, model rocketry has grown into an enormous hobby, beloved by millions of former kids, who have since introduced this educational pastime to their own offspring. Continue reading...

Slinky

Slinky toy

Everyone knows the Slinky. Beloved by children and physics teachers alike, this toy debuted in 1945 and has yet to ever slink away. Odds are good that every kid had at least one Slinky during their lifetime and if they didn’t actually own one, they’ve certainly played with one owned by somebody else. How did a simple metal coil become such a childhood icon? Let's take a look back at this marvelous toy and find out. Continue reading...

Fisher-Price Little People

Fisher Price Little People

For four decades, the little known toy company started by Herman Fisher, Irving Price, and Helen Schelle made whimsical wooden toys in relative obscurity. Shortly after their beginnings in 1930, Fisher-Price (as they called themselves) released the Woodsey Cart, a small animal-drawn wagon with a small wooden driver. The driver had a round head and cylindrical body and was fastened to his seat. Continue reading...

Colorforms

Colorforms

"They stick like magic!" Actually, magic had very little to do with what made a Colorform stick, rather it was just the adhesive quality of the thinly-cut plastic. The real magic lay in their ability to encourage the imagination. Colorforms were mere props, whether they resembled geometric shapes or a sitcom star. The box provided the stage; it was up to you to choose and arrange the props and, most importantly, concoct the story. Perfect for rainy days and long car trips, generations of kids have created millions of Colorform settings over the years. Continue reading...

Lite-Brite

Lite-Brite

For those whose artistic tastes lean away from the traditional and more toward the cool, look no further than a child’s bedroom. Disregard the crayon drawing on the refrigerator. Put the coloring book down. This sort of artwork is so good, it can only truly be seen in the dark. Continue reading...

Sno-Cone Machines

Sno-Cone Machines

At the end of the day, when playing is over and done with, you put your toys away and then what? You have nothing to show for it, no lasting reminder of a day’s hard work. Manufacturing something while still managing to have fun would well and truly validate your childhood. And if that something was edible, the venture would be win-win. Sno-Cone Machines debuted in 1967 and combined the best attributes of toydom. Brightly colored, shaped like a snowman, noisy, soggy and syrupy, Hasbro’s first sno-cone factory was a guaranteed hit. Continue reading...