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Kids Turn Toy News


Felt Story Board Newest Puzzle Blocks, Stacking Blocks, Dominoes & More at Booth 142

Santa Barbara, CA (February 2, 2010) – In the “old days” kids would sit on the floor and open a box of dominoes or puzzle pieces to build, dream, knock down and start all over again. Playtime did not involve electronics, cords, batteries or even noises. It was blissful hours of pure imagination. Can you imagine today’s techno-savvy kids doing that? The good news is yes -- classic toys like puzzles, blocks and dominoes are still universal!

And toymaker Babalu, Inc. has updated its WJ Fantasy line of classic toys with a richly illustrated artistic feel. See the newest additions to their toy line at this year’s American International Toy Fair Booth 142.

Parents appreciate the value -- both figuratively and literally – of Babalu’s well-known and best-selling line of FeltTales. They also adore WJ Fantasy, a company Babalu acquired last year, known for its nesting blocks, puzzles and more.

Parents quickly observed that simple play could engage a youngster’s full attention. Three kid-tested mom bloggers illustrate these points below:

    Since money is tight these days, people have been forced to be more creative with their entertainment and a happy byproduct of these difficult times is that there seems to be a shift in making toys more basic too. Electronics have their place but nothing makes me happier than seeing Anna pretending and using her imagination. So, when the opportunity to review products from Babalu came up, I was thrilled to bring their products into our home.
    • Courtney, • October 2009

    He loves them and plays with them daily. They are very well made and the price is very reasonable for all their products. You can’t go wrong!
    • Toni, • November 2009

    When I was introduced to Babalu I knew I had to share them with you because they have classic toys with integrity. Graham plays with these [ABC Building Blocks] pretty much every day. They are great because they nest and can be put away easily! Graham uses these traditionally, as stacking blocks, but I also find him using them to store things and as drum sets! He also finds a lot of joy in knocking them down once he has stacked them to the top (must be a boy thing).
    • Felicia, • October 2009

New for Spring 2010 are four traditional toy styles from WJ Fantasy with a beautifully artistic twist of vivid colors and designs:

    Nesting Blocks • Ages 3+ • $18
    WJ Fantasy is known for its wonderful nesting block designs and this year’s new The Day The Rain Came fits right in! From pandas to penguins, there are two of every animal -- beautifully depicted -- ready to join Noah and his Ark for the day the rain comes. Each square box shows four different illustrations with monkeys swinging, alligators slithering, Noah and his wife and children greeting the animals and so many rich details for young eyes to ponder. Stack ‘em high or nest them inside each other.

    Puzzle blocks • Ages 4+ • $8
    Choose one or all three themed puzzle block sets -- Monsters, Fairies and Butterflies. Each starts with nine different blocks that are illustrated on all sides. The challenge and fun of each game is to create a total of 6 different puzzles. The chunky cubes are ideal for little hands. Kids can follow Monsters through their surprisingly busy day. Enchanting Fairies float through the garden, seashore and forest. Playing with Butterflies introduces kids to colorful winged creatures in their exquisite natural settings.

    Dominoes • Ages 3+ • $6
    What’s old is new again and parents and grandparents will love introducing the game of dominoes to a new generation with two styles – World Friends and Furry Friends. There are no black and white dots to match but little friends from around the world or adorable dogs and cats! Match the picture and their corresponding number. A total of 28 jumbo tiles measuring 2” x 4” (chunky and perfect for little hands!) plus instructions are included in each game.

    Memory Game • Ages 3+ • $6
    Like the The Day The Rain Came blocks, this classic matching game, Noah’s Friends Match-Ups!, showcases Noah and his many animals who join him on the Ark. There are tigers, zebras, monkeys and of course Noah himself. Can you find the exact match on their way, two by two, to the Ark? 28 large tiles measuring 2” x 4” and an instruction sheet are included with each game.

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Babalu, Inc., makers of the award-winning and best-selling FeltTales product line, acquired longtime toymaker WJ Fantasy in 2009. WJ Fantasy designed and manufactured a distinctive selection of nesting blocks, toys, advent calendars and children’s books for more than 25 years. Babalu is owned and managed by Blair Everett, a toy industry veteran for more than 30 years. Today Everett brings that knowledge and commitment to the growing classic toy product with improving play and quality. Babalu toys can be found at specialty stores nationwide and online at and at For more information, including store locations, visit