THINK GLOBALLY, SHOP LOCALLY
FOR THE BEST TOYS FOR KIDS
PARENTS FIND ENGAGING AND SMART TOYS AT THEIR NEIGHBORHOOD STORES, WHILE SAVING MONEY AND THE ENVIRONMENT THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
Blacksburg, VA - October 14, 2009 – Gift-shoppers searching for quality and value this holiday season will not have to look far--they can find the best toys for kids right around the corner at their neighborhood toy store.
Parents are discovering that shopping at neighborhood and independent retailers is not only the most convenient choice, it is also an economically and socially responsible one, as well. Thrifty shoppers avoid high shipping costs by shopping locally.
Those dollars stay in the community, providing jobs and preserving the local character of neighborhoods. According to the 3/50 Project, for every $100 spent in local, independently-owned stores, $68 returns to the community--in contrast with only $43 dollars when consumers shop at a national chain. Resident business owners pour more money and energy back into the community in the form of everything from tax dollars to charity donations to participating in local initiatives through civic associations and area chambers of commerce.
"When you shop at an independent toy store, you are entering a universe of play possibilities," explains Kathleen McHugh, President of the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA). "Our members are part of your community and they will take the time to help you select just the right toy to help your child grow and learn through play."
Local shoppers can skip unnecessary waste and find plenty of value and quality at local and independent toy retailers. These store owners and managers have spent countless hours selecting and stocking their shelves with only the most innovative, unique, and engaging toys for children. With their expert understanding of how kids play, specialty toy retailers will guide shoppers in their quest for the perfect gift for the special children on their lists. Shopping at an independent retailer is like having your own personal shopping consultant..
Paula Bolte, owner of Imaginations Toy & Furniture Co., a member of ASTRA, reinforces those points. “We have celebrated holidays, birthdays and new babies with the families of the New River Valley, and beyond, for almost 13 years. Our passion is creating a family-friendly atmosphere where children of all ages enjoy playing and experiencing the fun playthings in our store. We will guide customers through the store, helping them choose the best toys for the children in their lives, and then gift wrap them at no charge!”
And shopping locally saves another kind of green, reducing the use of fuel and packaging for shipping. Goods bought from an independent store have a smaller carbon footprint than those stored and then shipped across the country. The environmental benefits extend beyond the single purchase, building more eco-friendly communities.
McHugh urges shoppers to think of their local stores first, "Consumers have a choice this season and by shopping locally, they will find great toys and support vibrant communities and sustainable economic development. Visit your neighborhood toy store and you may bring home more than just the perfect gift, you'll share the spirit of the season."
About the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA)
With more than 1000 members, the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association (ASTRA) is the largest association for companies in the toy and children’s products arenas. ASTRA and its member companies promote the growth of the toy industry by delivering products that serve children’s best interests. For more information, visit www.astratoy.org.