Debut of ‘Play Happens’ Among Exciting Events during Toy Fair 2011

December 14, 2010 | In conjunction with the opening of the largest toy box in the Western Hemisphere, the Toy Industry Association (TIA) has launched an exciting new initiative to correspond with the four-day extravaganza known as Toy Fair.

“Play Happens,” an innovative virtual and social board game created by TIA to bridge the online and offline activities of Toy Fair attendees and exhibitors, will turn the city into a virtual game board during the show, from February 13-16, 2011.

“The purpose of the game is to connect participants who will ‘check-in’ at locations throughout Manhattan using smartphone technology,” explained Kimberly Carcone, TIA director of trade show and event marketing.
At 12:01 a.m. on the Saturday (February 12), “Play Happens” will kick-off, running until 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, February 16. As players “check-in” using their smartphones at locations throughout the city, they’ll earn points on the virtual game board. Different locations will have different point values, ranging from 1, 3 and 5 points. Special events, such as the Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards (February 12), will earn higher points.

The player who earns the most points during the game will win an amazing New Year’s Eve 2011 prize package, which includes roundtrip airfare for two to New York City, two nights accommodations at the newly renovated NY Marriott Marquis Hotel located in the heart of Times Square, two tickets to the Marriott’s New Year’s Eve Gala, and Ball-level viewing of the drop at midnight.

Also during Toy Fair, TIA and its partners are hosting a series of events, seminars and learning opportunities designed to help every attendee find something that will lead to business growth and make his or her stay in New York as enriching as possible:

TIA’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 15, from 7:30 to 9:00 a.m.  The business meeting will be free to all Toy Fair registrants and exhibitors, and open to both TIA members and non-members for the first time. The agenda will cover a variety of topics including a summary financial report, key activities and accomplishments and the election of the new Board members and officers. A continental breakfast will be served from 7:30 to 8:00 a.m. and the meeting will begin at 9:00 a.m.

Also on February 15, from 9:15 to 10:30 a.m., TIA will host its annual Toy Fair Safety Update Seminar providing an update on pending state and federal legislation impacting the toy industry and an overview of TIA’s efforts to prevent passage of any harmful legislation or regulation. The session is free for members and $149 for non-members.

For toy companies hoping to expand further into the global marketplace, “U.S. Toy Manufacturers: Increase Exports/Maximize Trade Opportunities” will be presented on February 15th from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. by the U.S. Department of Commerce. This session will be free to all registrants and exhibitors.

On February 15 and 16, the ENGAGE! Expo Conference Program & Exhibit Hall will co-locate with Toy Fair at the Javits Center for the second year in a row. Engage 2011 will focus on tools and strategies for reaching the constantly connected consumer, address the proliferation of new devices and services allowing consumers to be “always on,” and discuss the new set of challenges this presents for companies. Doors open at 9:00 am on Tuesday and close at 5:00 pm on Wednesday.   Individuals can register online at

For a complete listing of events held during Toy Fair, including seminar descriptions and advance registration, please check back regularly to the “Happenings” page of

For further details about Play Happens and to learn more about the grand prize, visit the Toy Fair blog.