PlayCon Announces Esteemed Faculty of Speakers for May 4-6, 2011 Conference; Early Bird Registration Now Open

March 8, 2011 | PlayCon, the Toy Industry Association’s (TIA) International Conference of Play Professionals, will bring together forward-thinking industry leaders, experts and visionaries armed with the freshest ideas and most relevant information for toy industry stakeholders attending the May 4-6, 2011 event at the Hyatt Regency Resort and Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona.

“Businesses wishing to gain a creative edge in a highly competitive marketplace will find everything they need at PlayCon to grow their networks, maximize their sales and increase their profits,” said Marian Bossard, vice president of meetings and events at TIA. “Our conference committee, esteemed faculty and robust program promise an educational and networking experience like no other.”

At the three-day event, attendees will “Play to Win” by learning from and interacting with luminaries from the world of play, including:

Dr. Kathleen Alfano, PhD, Fisher-Price

Anita Frazier, NPD Group

Stephanie Azzarone, Child’s Play Communications
Natasha Galavotti, The Marketing Store  

 Mike Bonifer, Author of GameChangers –Improvisation for Business in the Networked World,
Co-founder of GameChangers, LLC

Lindsay Gaskins, Marbles  
 Dr. Stuart Brown, PhD, The National Institute of Play 
Ron Geraci, Nickelodeon  
Brendan Boyle, IDEO


Barbara Jones, One2One Network

Kathleen Campusano, Barnes & Noble 
Susan Nia, Fix8  
Dr. Michael Cohen, PhD, The Michael Cohen Group, Author, A Child’s Life: Learning, Literacy and the Media 
Adam Skaates, IDEO  
Tim Walsh, The Playmakers  
Karen Dodge, Toys “R” Us 
Dr. Renee Weber, PhD, The Marketing Store  
Scott Eberle, Strong National Museum of Play 
Sarah Wood, Amazon  
Julia Fitzgerald, Sears Holding Corporation   

This year’s program features multiple “building blocks to success,” including sessions on how to grow sales and profits, strategies for managing costs, the 2011 retail landscape, cutting-edge business development tools, and in-depth consumer insights and proprietary consumer research.

Early bird registration for PlayCon is now open; registrants will save $100 off the registration fee by signing up by April 1. Multiple registrants from the same company will enjoy additional savings.

By booking hotel reservations by April 10th, visitors will receive the discounted group rate of only $259 per night – a rate that will be available through Sunday, May 8th for attendees wishing to make the most of their stay in Arizona.

PlayCon registration includes all conference sessions and official event meals: a kick-off dinner, breakfast each day, lunch, refreshment breaks and an evening reception. Check the PlayCon website regularly for information and updates.