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Accelerate the fun at the Hot Wheels Headquarters at MattelShop.comOne of the fastest-growing and most exciting toy collections here at Rock Father HQ in recent months is the Hot Wheels STAR WARS Character Car Collection by Mattel. It's a unique thing - spawned from the first time that Mattel has held a STAR WARS license in the nearly 40-year history of the franchise, and something we've been covering since the first vehicles began hitting retail last year. With designs inspired-by characters from nearly all facets of a galaxy far, far away, two of the most recent additions are Chopper - the Astromech Droid from Disney XD's STAR WARS REBELS - and bounty hunter Boba Fett. Take a look at our new hands-on video below, right here on THE ROCK FATHER!

This week, something unique took place at Wild About Cars Garage in Kirkland, WA - the 1st Annual DriveShop PineBlock Charity Invitational. This race, inspired by the Pinewood Derby competitions that many Boy Scouts (and former Scouts, like myself) know and love was designed to race money for charity, with each car entered gaining $50 to either Make-A-Wish Foundation, Fisher House, Feeding America or 4 Paws for Ability. Put on by DriveShop to celebrate their new name, a number of folks from the automotive industry and their journalistic/blogging counterparts were invited to take part, myself included. The Rock Daughters and I put forth a valiant effort, making a special trip to Hobby Lobby for some supplies by Revell for my first PineBlock experience in over 30 years. Unfortunately, our car was somehow lost by the USPS, and it didn't make it to the race - a disappointment (especially given how much the girls loved the car), but the folks at DriveShop assured me that my donation would still be made for the Make-A-Wish Foundation! Check out highlights from the race below...

DynacraftNow this is cool. A lot of you know how big both movies and rides (cars/bicycles/powered ride-ons/scooters/etc) are here at Rock Father HQ, and when you combine the two into a fun night outside for families, I'm totally on-board with that. Last weekend, the folks at Dynacraft launched their Experiments in Fun series with a "Ride-in Theater" in Atlanta's Piedmont Park. They transformed the park into a car-less drive-in theater, complete with a 40-foot screen, where families could try out the latest bikes, scooters and ride-ons - the first part of a movement to invite families to "rethink what's possible with their favorite wheels." Take a peek at the highlight video below...

Tuesday, May 26 2015 08:42

TURBO FAST: SEASON ONE Races to DVD!

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It's hard to believe that I've been writing about DreamWorks Animation's TURBO for two years already, but here we are - and the Netflix Original Series spawned by the feature film is coming to DVD for the very first time. TURBO FAST: SEASON ONE, from the creators of TURBO, races home on June 2 in a three-disc collection from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, bringing with it over 9-hours of high-octane action with the world’s fastest snail and his Fast Action Stunt Team as they put their elite skills to the test against all-new opponents on and off the track. Check out the full episode listing below...

Funny enough, the girls and I were just at Hobby Lobby earlier today picking up some Revell products for a Pinewood project I'm doing (#DriveShopPineBlock - stay tuned!), and then we returned home to find some cool news from Revell sitting in my inbox. The Illinois-based model company has entered into a three-year partnership with car builder Chip Foose for six new model kits that will join Revell's existing Foose collection. Here's what they have to say about the new kits...

One of the biggest stories here on THE ROCK FATHER in the past few months was the news that toys based on NickJr's BLAZE AND THE MONSTER MACHINES were headed for Toys "R" Us. Reaction to that first-look at the new, high-octane vehicles from Mattel's Fisher-Price (especially on Facebook & Instagram) just solidified how much kids are loving the excitement of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) infused series. Now it's official - the BLAZE AND THE MONSTER MACHINES Toys have arrived in-store and online exclusively through Toys "R" Us - a launch perfectly-timed to the debut of DRAGON ISLAND DUEL, airing Monday, May 25th at 11am ET/PT on Nickelodeon. While we have not yet had a chance to check out any of the toys personally (our eyes are on the Die-Cast collection), I've heard from a few readers that have, and the folks at Nick did provide us with an early look at DRAGON ISLAND DUEL, which is officially Rock Father-approved!

Seat Belt SafetyWhile our girls are still pretty young, we already face some occasional issues with getting them strapped-in and making sure that they stay buckled-up whenever we're in the car - even when parked at the bus stop. Word on the street is that tweens (ages 8-14) can be the worst when it comes to this, and the bottom line is that being buckled-up is a non-negotiable. In fact, I can tell you from experience that one of my best friends was killed five years ago when he was thrown from a vehicle after failing to wear his seat belt. I think about that every day, and as a parent, it's extremely frustrating when the little ones don't listen, and that's why the Ad Council is reminding families that parents and grownups are the #1 influence for children when it comes to seat belt safety. Regardless of how bad they may want to fight you, never give up until they buckle up.

If you've got Spring Fever and are ready to start showing a little bit of love to your ride, the folks at Turtle Wax have served-up a little bit of a challenge - to #FreeTheSoul of your ride... particularly those special ones that have been sitting in the garage collecting dust all winter. This is your chance to win a personalized summer adventure* from Turtle Wax, and you have until June 30th to make it happen.

The folks over at Playmates Toys have some work to do. Last year, the girls and I were thrilled to add the TMNT "Turtle Assault Van" to our collection here at Rock Father HQ. Whatever you call it - The Party Wagon, the Battle Shell, the Shellraiser, or even the "Cowabunga Carl Party Van" - the TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES have had many variations on the vehicle they use to get around, and at the end of last year's Michael Bay-produced live-action film, the Turtles got the "Assault Van." While it was only in one scene, it made for a cool toy - one that's still used daily (and often becomes an argument with the neighbor kids). For next year's TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES sequel, the boys are going a little bit "bigger," and their new ride has appeared in pictures on Bay's website. Based on a garbage truck with the words "TARTARUGA BROTHERS" emblazoned on its side, the new TMNT truck looks to be borrowing a lot from the "New Battle Shell" from a decade ago, which featured a logo that said "Tortuga Bros. Moving." We're gonna need an action figure-scale version of this as soon as possible, ok?

2017 seems so far away, but the announcement of Disney Junior's MICKEY AND THE ROADSTER RACERS makes me hold some hope that my girls will into it when it arrives - a new series aimed at kids 2-7. Featuring stories told using a combination of CG animation and live action footage, MICKEY AND THE ROADSTER RACERS is "designed to impart social and emotional lessons about friendship, teamwork and good sportsmanship." If this show existed today? My Mickey-loving, car-loving kids (and the Mickey-loving little one in me) would be all over this. The high-octane announcement arrived today, along with some early test footage (viewable below) and full details on what looks light a fantastic replacement for the aging MICKEY MOUSE CLUBHOUSE...

Discount Tire Brand AmbassadorHaving purchased many, many sets of tires over the years, my wife and I have had the experience of buying tires from several different shops and sellers. As drivers of traditionally high-mileage vehicles, new tires and tire repair comes with the territory, but it wasn't until 2011 that we became loyal to one particular store: Discount Tire.

FF LogoOne of my favorite places on the planet is Universal Studios Hollywood - despite having only spent a little under three hours there in February of 2014 on what I dubbed my "World's Fastest One-Man Tour of Universal Studios" (though I have visited Universal CityWalk a few times)The pictures were on my socials as I had just enough time to make my way down the hill to TRANSFORMERS: THE RIDE, back up to the famous park tour (thankfully, no lines!) and a walk around to soak in the vibe before hitting the gift shop and heading for LAX (I'd been in town on a project and the folks at NBC Universal were kind enough to spot me a badge for a quick visit). Now there's even more reason to head back (as if my girls' love of the MINIONS and my wife's HARRY POTTER fixation wasn't enough), as FAST & FURIOUS--SUPERCHARGED has been revealed to be opening on Thursday, June 25, 2015. Today, Universal Studios Hollywood sent over a link of some first-look footage of the new attraction, and you can see it below...

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