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Made in USA Toy SaleTo honor American workers this Labor Day, we’re offering one of our best sales ever:

20% off Made in USA toys

I noticed that some big toy makers and toy stores are having sales this weekend but I noticed that they didn’t mention anything about American-made products.  Then it dawned on me – it’s because they don’t sell anything that’s made in USA!

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According to the US Department of Labor:

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

So let’s celebrate the wonderful craftsmanship of US toymakers!   Use code LABORDAY at checkout. Choose from among:


Sale through September 3rd. We carry other fine made in USA toys and furniture but are unable to include them in this sale.  Sale excludes Vermont Dory, Mountain Boy Sleds, Little Colorado Furniture.

Remember that when you buy American made toys you are supporting your neighbors and contributing to a strong US economy!

Please check out these groups support Made in USA:

Made in USA Challenge

Buy Direct USA

For more information on the value of buying made in USA, please read my earlier posts:  Toys Made in USA, Made in America Toys – At What Price? and Made in USA Still Matters according to Businessweek.

Photo credit: Old Shoe Woman / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Roy Toy Log Cabin Toy Set

Following on from yesterday’s blog,  Made in America Toys – At What Price?, about the pro’s and con’s of spending more on made in USA toys vs. spending less on made in China toys, here’s a recent post by Harold L. Sirken at Businessweek’s The Management Blog: Made in the USA’ Still Matters.

In it, he relays research that shows that:

80 percent of Americans………will pay more for products labeled Made in the USA.

He goes on to say:

60 percent of Chinese consumers also are willing to pay more for products labeled Made in the USA—as much as 80 percent more, in some cases….

To most of the world, “Made in the USA” still means something special: quality, dependability, safety, reliability—products that feature the most advanced technologies and the hippest styles. Buy these products, and you too can share in the American dream.

So, that doesn’t answer my question about buying American made toys, but it’s an interesting twist to learn that the Chinese and others value the made in America label.

What premium would you pay for made in America toys?

As some of you may know, Turner Toys exhibited at the Vermont Rails Model Railroad Show yesterday.  While we had a great response for our classic toys and educational toys, we were not as successful with our wooden trains and wooden track for children.

Wooden Train Set

If you can’t sell wooden trains at a train show, you know something is wrong.

What we found out from some folks is that they can buy inexpensive wooden track that works with Brio and Thomas the Tank Engine from outlet stores and toy companies on the internet. Where are those wooden trains & tracks made?  Not surprisingly, they are made in China. Our wooden trains and track are made by Maple Landmark in Middlebury, Vermont.

Turns out that you can buy kids’ trains and track from these stores for less than we purchase them from Maple Landmark.

Not all made in China toys are bad.  We carry the award-winning toy, Woodkins Dressup Doll, that is made in China.  We know that there is strict oversight and product safety testing.

In a positive light, cheaper products are an economic benefit to consumers.  On the other hand, we know the value of buying made in USA toys.  Several sites such as Made in USA Challenge highlight the economic, environmental and cultural value of buying local.

What do you think?  Spend more money for high quality, American-made toys that support your neighbors or save money by spending less on products that may or may not be high quality and benefit other economic markets?

What matters most to you?

Turner Toys is proud to carry almost 100 toys that are made in the USA.   Why do we carry American-made toys when we could probably buy less expensive products?  Many of the American companies that we work with have been crafting their toys for generations and share our values and love for “the toys we grew up with.”   We feel confident in the safety and quality of American-made toys.   Most importantly – these are great toys!



Some of our American-made products

These include Slinky– still made in Hollidaysburg, Pennsylvania with the original equipment Richard James created.  The Slinky has changed little in over 50 years. A crimp was added to the ends of the wire to ensure safe play.  Though it was developed to be a toy, other applications for the Slinky have been discovered. The Slinky has been used as an antenna by soldiers in Vietnam, as a therapy tool and for coordination development. The possibilities are endless.

Roy Toy Log Cabin Toy Set

Roy Toy Log Cabin Frontier set

Roy Toy log cabin toys are made in Maine, the “Pine Tree State”.  Roy Toy was established in the mid 1930’s by one of the earliest pioneers in the wooden toy industry, Roy K. Dennison.  Roy would often say, “There’s no greater feeling for a parent than helping their child explore their own imagination”.  After Roy died in 1960’s, the business was shuttered.  Roy’s grandson, Bruce Dennison, decided to revive the Roy Toy business in 1992.  He has honored his grandfather’s vision by producing the precisely made realistic  square logs that fit together perfectly.  All the parts are cut from fresh Maine Pinewood, colored with non-toxic dyes. You know that Roy Toys is the real thing when you open the box and smell the wonderfully fragrant pine! Bonus – Roy Toy log cabin sets have no plastic parts!

Uncle Goose Classic Alphabet Blocks

Uncle Goose Classic Alphabet Blocks

Turner Toys carries heirloom-quality alphabet block sets from Uncle Goose in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  They offer an array of classic alphabet blocks and  foreign language blocks (Chinese, Arabic, Greek, Russian, Korean and Hebrew.  Pete Bultman runs the family business that his father started in Michigan in 1983.  Uncle Goose blocks use quality materials to recreate nostalgic toys that mix playing and learning in a graphic, tactile way.

G70 Folding Wing Catapult Balsa Glider 12 inch wingspan.

Balsa wood Folding Wing Catapult Glider

We also have a collection of Guillows balsa wood airplanes – from the basic balsa gliders you had as a child to  complex balsa model airplane kits of famous military and civilian aircraft. The Guillows model airplane company was founded in 1926 by Paul K. Guillow, a World War I U. S. Navy Aviator. His experience as a Navy pilot created his passion for  aviation which led him to create a line of small balsa wood construction kits of famous World War I combat aircraft.

In upcoming blogs, we’ll highlight other American-made toys.  Turner Toys is s a resource on Buy Direct USA‘s website and our products are featured in their 2012 Made in the USA Gift Guide.  Turner Toys is also listed on Americans Working site.

Is buying American-made products important to you?  Tell us why.

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