‘Toys!’ Not Just Fun ‘n’ Games!

Toys have been around as long as civilization – maybe longer. A new, interactive exhibit opens (to the public) March 20 at Sharlot Hall Museum that will go beyond the fun and fantasy associated with toys.

“For thousands of years, toys have been an essential tool for young people, enlightening on cultural norms and developing their social skills, while molding the child’s mind and dexterity,” says Kylin Cummings, curator of collections and developer of this interactive exhibit.

Dolls, tops, marbles, whistles and carved toy monkeys that could slide down a string (perhaps the first yo-yo) can be traced to all cultures providing both entertainment and development. The new exhibit showcases a range of toy genre, from dolls and board games, to wagons and sleds, puzzles and tinkertoys that span two centuries of “building bricks” of and for child development.

The exhibit will include items of historic significance, if only to make one exclaim, “I remember playing with one of those!” While nostalgic at first, the entire exhibit is intended to make the visitor aware that toys have always been more than items for play. These continue to provide leisure-time activity, tactile tools for creativity and imagination, fun and fantasy,

“Toys! It’s Not All Fun & Games!” will open inside the Lawler Exhibit Center Gallery.

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