Back in the 1980s, Galoob Toys' Micro Machines first hit the scene and became a massive success for a number of years, eventually fading a bit before the small, West Coast toymaker was absorbed by the large, East Coast-based Hasbro. Along the way, Hasbro also acquired TONKA, since licensed out to Funrise Toys, current manufacturers of the iconic yellow vehicles and their many spinoffs. The reason why these acquisitions and licensing deals are important to this story is that the newly-released TONKA Tinys seem to carry a lot of DNA from all of these companies' past endeavors. While there have been plenty of Micro Machines copycats over the past three decades, none have felt as close to the real deal as these new Tinys from TONKA, and that's a pretty cool thing as nostalgia plays so heavily into what parents of today are introducing to their own kids. One decidedly modern spin, however, is that TONKA Tinys are essentially "Blind Boxed," and they tap into the very now trend of micro collectibles.
Of all the vehicular interests here at Rock Father HQ, one of the most timeless has to be that of TONKA. While the line has evolved over the years to encompass many different types of vehicles in varying sizes and materials, nothing beats the classics - those made of steel or diecast. In last year's Holiday Wish Guide I featured some of the modern diecast singles, but this year I'm focusing on a few different versions, including this TONKA Vintage Diecast 3-Pack. Featuring a Vintage Fire Rescue truck, Vintage Police Cruiser and Vintage Police Wagon (along with a pair of safety cones), the classic styling and sturdy construction will make these a big hit for kids and grownups alike.
As it was once written: "For centuries, the Legend of Santa Claus has evolved. From Saint Nicholas to Kris Kringle, Father Christmas to simply, Santa - this mysterious giver has taken many forms, appearing throughout the world under countless names to delight and inspire families by doing for others each and every holiday season. For many, the spirit of “Claus” is held within, a shining light that burns with the desire to do for others, particularly for those less fortunate."
When I became "The Rock Father" upon the birth of our first daughter back in 2009, I had no idea where the road of parenthood would lead. Eventually it became clear that my path is branching, and just as becoming a parent led to the birth of this digital magazine - this site led to the opportunity to do more. My job has allowed me to do some good our local community, and last year the opportunity arose to partner with General Motors and OnStar to hit the road to do some "Black Friday Shopping for Good" - the end result of which provided gifts for 37 children across 15 families right here in our township. Regardless of sponsorship, I made a decision that we'd do it again this year - and bigger, if possible. The Rock Daughters and I began amassing gifts in our garage, and as the holiday season began, we started ramping up a bit. Then, I'm happy to say that we partnered with Chevrolet and OnStar once more, and for 2015 #ChevyShopsForGood!
This weekend, the 13th annual Chicago Toy and Game Fair (ChiTAG) returns to Navy Pier in Chicago for two days of fun, Saturday, November 21, 2015 and Sunday, November 22, 2015. Having covered ChiTAG extensively here on THE ROCK FATHER Magazine for the past four years of its run, I've taken a look at this year's schedule and floor plan to highlight five things that we're looking forward to this weekend. With hundreds of participants, there's some familiar faces and some fresh ones that will be exhibiting some of 2015's hottest toys and games (several of which are in my 2015 Holiday Wish Guide), appropriately just ahead of Thanksgiving Week and the infamous Black Friday shopping kick-off. Here's a few things to check out... and yes, there will be STAR WARS.
We all know the big, iconic yellow TONKA trucks and vehicles - and while those might be the first thing to come to mind at the mention of TONKA, they also have something a bit smaller that makes for perfect stocking stuffers this holiday season. At roughly 1:55-scale, TONKA METAL Diecast vehicles are ready for adventure with series' that include First Responders, City Defenders, Construction Crew, and even Strike Force (Military). These free-wheeling specialty vehicles are built tough and a lot of fun for kids ages 3+, but they're also great for grownup collectors, too - a neat retro piece. Singles run less than $5, and there's multi-packs out there as well, on pegs at Walmart, Target, Toys "R" Us, Amazon and many other retailers Nationwide. They're a featured pick in my 2015 Holiday Wish Guide here at THE ROCK FATHER Magazine.
I've been sort of obsessed with the idea of a life-sized TONKA truck ever since I saw one of the custom FORD TONKA's at the Chicago Auto Show a few years back. Then, someone that lives relatively close to me bought one - a fact I know since I see it on the road a few times a month, so there's a TONKA being stored somewhere new Rock Father HQ. But when it comes to life-sized TONKA trucks, the folks at Funrise Toys, who manufacture TONKA under license from Hasbro, have a long-running relationship with TOYOTA, and this week they've unveiled the life-sized TONKA 4Runner - a power-packed truck that joins a family of life-size TONKA marketing vehicles including the TONKA T-Rex, the TONKA Tundra and Off-road vehicles – Pro 2, Pro 4, Pro Lite and Pro Buggy, which compete in the Lucas Oil Off-Road Racing Series.