Toys: Exhibit Experience

For immediate release

Release dated: 
February 24, 2014
Media contacts: 

Jessica Kohen, Marketing and Communications, 651-259-3148, jessica.kohen@mnhs.org
Amy Danielson, Marketing and Communications, 651-259-3020, amy.danielson@mnhs.org

Toys: Exhibit Experience

Through three living rooms and one garage setting, visitors can explore hundreds of playthings, including toys made in Minnesota, building toys, and toys that made the naughty list (messy, dangerous and annoying)! Around every corner is a play zone where visitors can immerse themselves in hands-on play. And a trivia game tests visitors’ knowledge of America’s favorite playthings.

The 1950s Living Room

  • Toys: Early African-American dolls, Roy Rogers-themed toys, Fort Apache set, Davy Crockett coonskin cap, model kits, Fisher-Price Corn Popper and more.
  • Play Zone: Slinky steps. Try your hand at making a Slinky walk down the stairs, then race your friend to see whose Slinky finishes first.
  • Video: Commercials from the 1950s including Betsy Wetsy, Lionel trains and the original Mr. Potato Head -- one of the first toys to be advertised on television.

The 1960s Living Room

  • Toys: Barbie and Ken dolls, Easy-Bake Oven, Play-Doh, GI Joe, Flintstones play set, Mouse Trap and more.
  • Play Zone: Giant toys table. Take a seat and try your hand at building a tower out of giant Tinkertoy pieces or test your skill at creating the longest chain possible out of oversized Barrel of Monkeys pieces.
  • Video: Commercials from the 1960s including Barbie’s Dreamhouse and Rock 'em Sock 'em Robots.

The 1970s Living Room

  • Toys: Hungry Hungry Hippos, LEGOs, Star Wars action figures, Simon and more.
  • Play Zone: A 5-foot tall dollhouse where kids of all ages can play make-believe as they explore rooms filled with toys that will appeal to boys and girls.
  • Video: Commercials from the 1970s including Hot Wheels and Charlie’s Angels dolls.

The Garage

  • Toys: Kent Classic Lawn Darts (a.k.a. Jarts), Big Wheels and bicycles, Frisbees and more.
  • Play Zone: Nerf hoops. Try your hand at tossing a Nerf ball at a variety of baskets and targets. Or, pick up a hula hoop and practice your skills.

Classic Toys Trivia Challenge - Hosted by Maureen McCormick of The Brady Bunch.
Try out these sample questions:

  • Question 1: What walks down stairs, alone or in pairs?
  • Question 2: In 1964 Tonka launched its Mighty line of bigger, beefier toys. What was the first Mighty truck offered?
  • Question 3: In the 1958 novelty hit "The Chipmunk Song," what toy does Alvin repeatedly ask for?

(Answers 1 slinky, 2 dump truck, 3 hula hoop)

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