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Three toys inducted into Hall of Fame

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Rochester Business Journal
November 10, 2011

Hot Wheels, the dollhouse and the blanket have assumed their place in toy history.

The three toys were inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame on Thursday during a ceremony at the Strong National Museum of Play. Selected from a field of 12 finalists that included the puppet, Dungeons & Dragons and Twister, the three inductees join the 49 other toys inducted.

With more than 800 models and 11,000 variations, Hot Wheels cars have been popular toys since Mattel Inc. launched the brand in 1968. The company also was credited with building flexible, plastic tracks for the cars along with the famous orange loop that became a symbol for a generation of children.
The dollhouse evolved from 16th century “baby houses” used by wealthy European women to display collections of miniature furnishings. It gained popularity in the 19th century when it was mass produced by toy manufacturers, making it accessible to more children. The dollhouse has gained popularity in electronic form through video games such as The Sims.

The blanket is seen as one of the world’s oldest toys, used in imaginative play to become a cape, flying carpet or curtains for a puppet show. It joins other inanimate objects—the stick in 2008 and cardboard box in 2005—to be inducted.

The other nominees were Jenga, Pogo Stick, R/C vehicles, Rubik’s Cube, Simon, Transformers and Star Wars action figures.

To be selected for the Toy Hall of Fame submissions must first be selected by an internal museum advisory committee comprised of curators, educators, and historians reviews the submitted nominations and determines which toys meet the criteria for selection. A national selection committee then reviews and votes on the list of toy, with the toys receiving the most votes being inducted.

(c) 2011 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or e-mail

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