Places to Party

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Destination: Play

     Time for some visual candy....

If you think back, what was your absolutely favorite toy? Maybe a toy you couldn't be without or one that you received as a birthday gift or that Santa left under the tree?

Maybe you still even have it. I know I still have some of my childhood friends.
This past weekend our friends and my family visited one of the most entertaining and unique museums out there. The Strong Museum started with the collection of it's founder, Margaret Woodbury Strong. Mrs. Strong had a lifetime collection of household objects and toys at one time having collected well over 27,000 dolls. What began as a collection in her Rochester Mansion later became the Strong Museum and, beginning in the mid-nineties, focused on toys.

This is a fun place that we are so lucky that it is basically in our backyards....

Every year the museum inducts a new toy to the "Toy Hall of Fame". And before you think this is just manufactured toys, realize that past inductees have included bubbles, balls and in 2005, the cardboard box. This past year's inductees included Rubik's Cube and Little Green Army Men.

Here are some past inductees:


For the kids, there are things go climb, toys to play with and the entire upstairs is video games throughout the decades. Plan to spend hours here. There is a child sized grocery store (clever marketing Wegmans!) a ship and I know where Sesame Street is, it's here!

I LOVED my Little Professor!

Adults aren't bored either. What you hear as you walk through are exclamations of, "I had that!", "I remember playing with that!" and "I always wanted that!" It's a trip down memory lane for the above ten set.

There are also things you haven't seen and the history of games and toys you've never heard of... and some you have.

This was a homemade round Monopoly board designed to fit on
a round table.


As a doll collector myself, I was amazed at the doll houses and love the old dolls of Mrs. Strong's collections. Originally these doll houses were for adults not children according to the display.


The attention to detail that these wealthy women put into these houses are unbelievable. I especially love the flapper. These little doll houses freeze a moment in time so we can see how people lived or wanted to live.

I'm totally ready to move in...

Baby is asleep...

Sister is waiting for her paramour...

Madame in her boudoir.

The butler or is that dad waiting on his little Miss.


One of these days I'm going to make my own doll house. Apparently it has a pedigree.....
Although wealthy I'm not!

Tea is ready.

Sister is ready to go out on the town....

Love the flapper!

Servants in every room

The parlor maid.

Time to make the breakfast

 I so wish I had some of these beautiful dolls! 

Can you imagine being a child and waking up to a doll that was the same size as you were? The perfect playmate.

And a Kewipee doll with the
"Goo-goo-googly eyes"....
Love flappers! And these are porcelain!

The Dionne Quintuplets.

Shirley and friends. I think that's Charles Lindbergh!

Did you have any of these? Hey, there is Skipper!
What ever happened to Skipper and Frenchy? Huh?

Toys even became patriotic during the war years!

Beam me up Mr. Scott.

Kids of all ages love video games ....


From those of us who were the first generation playing our Atari's and Commodore 64's...

PONG! Who can forget PONG!
Such strategy! Such skill...

I've got Mad PONG skills!

Don't forget pinball! Love me some pinball...


It's just a great time to visit some friends from the past and reminisce. If you find yourself in Rochester, NY, take some time to visit the museum with your kids or grandkids. You'll be glad you did.

Pacman, Inky, Pinky and Clyde