Toy Chains

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dth1971
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Toy Chains

Post by dth1971 » 24 Jan 2007 17:25

Who remembers these former toy store chains that once rivaled Toys R Us?:
Child World
Children's Palace
Lionel Kiddie City
(Lionel) Play World

Also: For mallies there was Circus World, Toy Box, K & K Toys, Toys By Rizzi, and Playland Toys

Also: Did you know the original name for the Toys R Us toy store chain was called Children's Bargain Town USA?

Also: Who remembers the defunct Canadian toy store chain Toy City/Toyville? I know there's a 1987 Toyville TV commercial in French somewhere on YouTube.

<<Edited by moderator to consolidate multiple similar threads. Please do not start new toy chain threads.>>

dth1971
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Post by dth1971 » 29 Jan 2007 10:30

Here's a link to a pic of a 1978 Circus World mall toy store:

http://www.plaidstallions.com/images/circusworld.jpg

mgrmk
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Post by mgrmk » 29 Jan 2007 16:08

In the late 90's I was a manger for Toys International, a So Cal based company that was originally called Play Co. Toys. At their height in 1999 they had 45 stores under Play Co. Toys, Toyco and Toys International. Most of the Play Co's were in So Cal and were about 2/3 the size of Toys R Us, the Toyco stores were mainly in outlet malls and Toys International were mall based stores mainly in higher end malls with stores in CA, NV, AZ, TX, IL, FL and NC. Toys International was designed to compete with FAO Schwarz. The compnay's demise came as they were expanding too rapidly and pouring alot of money into the internet craze all while Wal-Mart was taking over the toy industry.

MBZ321
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Post by MBZ321 » 30 Jan 2007 17:17

In the northeast, we had a chain called "Family Toy Warehouse" (name was shortened just to Family Toy in the late 90's). They seemed to sell more educational and outdoor toys than Toys R Us sold. Their last 20 stores all closed up around 4 or 5 years ago.

Former website: http://web.archive.org/web/200205240020 ... lytoy.com/

dth1971
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Post by dth1971 » 30 Jan 2007 17:19

What about Early Learning Center Toys?

javelin
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Post by javelin » 31 Jan 2007 01:15

mgrmk wrote:In the late 90's I was a manger for Toys International, a So Cal based company that was originally called Play Co. Toys. At their height in 1999 they had 45 stores under Play Co. Toys, Toyco and Toys International. Most of the Play Co's were in So Cal and were about 2/3 the size of Toys R Us, the Toyco stores were mainly in outlet malls and Toys International were mall based stores mainly in higher end malls with stores in CA, NV, AZ, TX, IL, FL and NC. Toys International was designed to compete with FAO Schwarz. The compnay's demise came as they were expanding too rapidly and pouring alot of money into the internet craze all while Wal-Mart was taking over the toy industry.
I remember when Play Co had a very large selection of Lionel train accessories when I was a kid. In the late 90's one location was in a strip mall in Rialto that was the former site of a Fedmart.

TheQuestioner
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by TheQuestioner » 01 Feb 2007 19:11

dth1971 wrote:Who remembers these former toy store chains that once rivaled Toys R Us?:
Child World
Children's Palace
Lionel Kiddie City
(Lionel) Play World
I am pretty sure that Children's Palace was the same chain as Child World. I think they used that name in areas where they were expanding that had never heard of Child World. I remember the creepy-looking sign with elongated "globes" (like on the background of old TV News shows) that Child World had on it's New England Stores. Around the mid 80's I started to see Children's Palace locations around Maryland/DC, and soon after Child World's in N.E. started to look pretty similar, with the castle motif. I think they all shut down around 1996.

dth1971
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Post by dth1971 » 02 Feb 2007 18:18

Child World/Children's Palace went out of business in 1992, not 1996.

Also: I have seen in some TV commercial complimation videotapes a Child World commercial or two from the late 1970's with the Child World globe and kids logo and the phrase "There's no other world like Child World".

dth1971
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Post by dth1971 » 03 Feb 2007 17:12

Another toy store chain was the Washington, D.C./Baltimore area based Juvenile Sales Corp.

wulfgar64
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by wulfgar64 » 29 Feb 2008 18:23

Lyman Cox's "The Toy Shop" in Sacramento had a location in Arden Fair (pre-renovation) and one in Florin Mall. Awesome displays of model trains. There was also Talkin's Toyland on Stockton Bl (pre-Little Saigon). Neither had the amount of merchandise as Toys R Us or KayBee, but they were old school toy stores.

BillyGr
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by BillyGr » 29 Feb 2008 22:19

Anybody from upstate NY remember the Toys R Joy (later Toys for Joy - I guess another chain had a problem with the first name - wonder why ;)?

They were an outgrowth of the Joy Stores (which only had 3 stores - Rensselaer, Clifton Park and Glens Falls, all in NY) but the toy chain wound up with about 10-12 stores at one point. It didn't last terribly long, and probably hastened the death of the parent stores as well. All were gone by the early 90's (maybe before that even).

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buckhead
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by buckhead » 01 Mar 2008 08:08

dth1971 wrote:Who remembers these former toy store chains that once rivaled Toys R Us?:
Child World
Children's Palace
Lionel Kiddie City
(Lionel) Play World

Also: For mallies there was Circus World, Toy Box, K & K Toys, Toys By Rizzi, and Playland Toys ...

<<Edited by moderator to consolidate multiple similar threads. Please do not start new toy chain threads.>>
I remember Lionel Leisure City operation first...later rechristened Lionel Play World. I think the latter name may have represented scaled down stores.

There were also Toy Liquidators and Toyland stores that I remember.

ajc47
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by ajc47 » 01 Mar 2008 22:40

I remember Children's Palace, where I got my first bike when I was 7, and Lionel too but that one's been gone for years.

jamcool
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by jamcool » 03 Mar 2008 01:28

In the Southwest (AZ-NM-TX) we had Toys By Roy, which were rather large toy and hobby stores mostly in malls -the had good sized hobby depts. I believe KB bought them out in the 80s.

dth1971
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Re: Toy Chains

Post by dth1971 » 29 Jun 2008 12:36

I found out recently Toys R Us in the Washington, D.C. area was originally called Children's Supermart.

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