a peek inside the fishbowl

13 Sep, 2010

Giveaway alert: give the gift of great play from Tag Along Toys

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Giveaways and product reviews

Toys are important. Scratch that, GREAT toys are important.

There is a lot going on in little brains when children play. We all know it starts when they’re freshly arrived. Mobiles, rattles, squeaky toys … they help develop spongy young brains. But the benefits of play don’t end when kids get a little bit older. Many of us are tempted to enter the world of electronic gadgetry when kids hit 8 or 9 or 10, but the truth is they still love to play with traditional toys, and the benefits of play are just as important at this age as when they were very young.

Fishbowl patron Tag Along Toys is hosting this very sweet giveaway for Ottawa-area residents. Yay Tag Along! I first wrote about them here. To summarize: they know about kids, great toys, and about PLAY.

Did you know (1) Tag Along has a Facebook page. You will definitely want to check it out for special deals and other insider info. (2) Grandparents day is the last Thursday of every month, and this means that grandma and grandpa get 20% off all in-stock toys. (And the next one is September 30!)

Anyway, on to the giveaway!

The first item is a Foam Master Pogo Stick (Borgfeldt):

Healthy exciting fun for girls and boys. A constant item in the toy industry since the first patent was issued in 1920. These precisionmade foam covered metal pogo sticks are built to last for years. Features replaceable non-slip safety handles, footpads & rubber tip. Exercise and perfect your balance indoors and outdoors. Will safely support 80 to 160 lbs.
Age: Ages 9yrs+
Suggested retail: $69.99

We have a pogo (not this brand) – and stilts – and can I say HOLY CATS. KIDS CAN JUMP. It is a sight to behold. Pogo stick jumping is a skill that has eluded me. Yet kids learn do it with grace and ease. It’s one of those things – like riding a bike or learning how to master the monkey bars in the playground – that demands some practice, but it’s figure out is So Incredibly Satisfying. Not to mention a great party trick.

Someday I might get us a unicyle.

Second item is a Karito Doll:

Real Dolls for Real Girls in the Real World… For tween girls ages 6 to 11 who are fascinated by the people, places and things that make us all different. Karito Kids is the brand that lets you embrace and explore the diverse world around you – the dolls, stories and experiences are different in every way. From the way they look to the countries they’re from, the dolls represent what it means to be a real girl today. The unique fashion and accessories as well as the global adventures you can take online and off, remind you that every girl around the world is special. Only Karito Kids lets you make a real difference in the lives of real kids who need our help – it’s good fun for a good cause.
Ages: 7+
Suggested retail: $99.99

We have a doll lover in our house. She’d love one of these. Some girls are into the doll scene, others would prefer the pogo. :) I think dolls are excellent toys; they promote great dramatic play and a lovely nurturing/family-friendly philosophy. So sweet. I love the fact that girls can get a Karito doll that looks like them.

Both of these items were Gold Star award-winning toys this year as determined by NETS (Neighhourbood Toys Stores of Canada). Each year, NETS members vote on the top ten toys they consider “exceptional” with respect to play value.  The Gold Star Award top ten list is a great place to get gift ideas because the selection is based on feedback from like-minded parents who shop at NETS. Tag Along Toys is NETS member.

What’s more, the Annual NETS Christmas catalogue comes out in early November. So if you’re looking for more Christmas gift ideas you’ll definitley want to check that out.

This giveaway is for the pogo OR the doll. So I’m doing two draws for two different winners.

If you’d like to win one of these items, here’s what you need to do (please read carefully):

  • You must live in the Ottawa area – or know someone who does – because the winner will have to pick up their prize at Tag Along Toys. (They’re located in Kanata at the Signature Centre – 499 Terry Fox Dr.)
  • Leave a comment below. Let me know which ONE item you’d like to win, and why.
  • Subscribe to the Extra Helping if you haven’t already.
  • If you’re on Twitter, good karma comes to those who tweet about this giveaway. If you’re not, emailing your friends to let them know is just as good. :)
  • One entry per family please! I want lots of people to have the opportunity to win.

Sound good?  I will do a random draw using Random.org at noon EST on Monday September 20, 2010. Please make sure you leave a valid email address. You can’t win if I can’t reach you.

Thank you Tag Along Toys for hosting such a great giveaway!

Now… over to you!

64 Responses to "Giveaway alert: give the gift of great play from Tag Along Toys"

1 | Sue1788

September 13th, 2010 at 9:54 am


Thanks for the give away. I would like the pogo stick since it’s a great way to get my children exercising.

2 | Lindsay Arnold

September 13th, 2010 at 9:57 am


Hi, I’d love to win the pogo stick because I think both my children would love it and it promotes fun activity!

Thank you,


3 | Joy

September 13th, 2010 at 10:00 am


I would choose the Karito doll. My daughter is 9 years, and still loves dolls. She is fascinated by other cultures, and goes to a school that is very multicultural. She would love these dolls. Thanks for the great contest, and to TagAlong toys – a great store in our neighborhood!!

4 | Chrissy

September 13th, 2010 at 10:06 am


Great giveaway! I love Tag Along Toys – it’s the only place we shop for presents, and we often just go hang out and browse before grocery shopping. My daughter would love the Karito doll. She’s very big into pretend play with her “babies”. I think the concept of multicultural dolls is long overdue.

5 | Krista

September 13th, 2010 at 10:23 am


Great Giveaway! Please enter me in the draw for the Pogo Stick. My 7 year old would LOVE it.

6 | Lara

September 13th, 2010 at 10:51 am


I’d love the doll for my daughter. So far we have almost no “girlier” toys in the house, something I think all my kids would enjoy actually. :)

7 | Melissa

September 13th, 2010 at 10:53 am


Ooo! Winning the pogo would be awesome! I could see sending the boys out for an hour of pogo-jumping before bed to tire them out! We never did get them a Jolly Jumper as babies, so a pogo would relieve any residual “mommy guilt” about depriving them of their chance to jump. ;)

I already subscribe to The Extra Helping!

8 | coffee with julie

September 13th, 2010 at 11:13 am


I’d LOVE to be entered for the pogo stick because I always wanted one when I was a kid, but never had one. :(

I promise that if I win, I’d share it with my kids :)

9 | DA

September 13th, 2010 at 11:31 am


Both of these items would be a big hit our house!

10 | Elizabeth

September 13th, 2010 at 11:44 am


Oh, I’d love to win the pogo stick! I have such great memories of my own pogo stick when I was a child, and I’d love my daughters to experience that joy too. And maybe the springs on my couch would be spared the extra jumping.

11 | Binki

September 13th, 2010 at 11:48 am


My youngest daughter would love the pogo and my eldest would love one of those dolls. Nice giveaway! Thanks.

12 | Binki

September 13th, 2010 at 11:49 am


I subscribed to Extra Helping but…nothing yet. It hasn’t started?

13 | Mel

September 13th, 2010 at 12:11 pm


I’d love the pogo stick (for my girls, of course!). I remember having one as a kid. Thanks for the chance!

14 | julie

September 13th, 2010 at 12:20 pm


Love Tag along toys. That’s where we got our plasma car. If we had a pogo stick, one could play on our palsma car and the other could jump while the third waits patiently (not really, she’d probably kick and scream until I brought out the hand me down big wheel) then the three would race around the car until I was dizzy.

15 | Ingrid

September 13th, 2010 at 1:15 pm


Hi, my boys would love the pogo. They are currently using a rusty, squeaky one that they actually picked out of the neighbour’s garbage! Ha! Yet somehow they managed to learn how to use the thing.

Good luck to us!

16 | Darcy

September 13th, 2010 at 1:51 pm


Oh, the doll would be a huge hit here.

17 | Danielle

September 13th, 2010 at 2:35 pm


I would love to win the Karito doll, I have twin girls and it would be great to introduce them to a “real” looking doll rather than a fake barbie doll…teaching little girls the right values at a young age is so important!!

18 | Ceilidh Caverly

September 13th, 2010 at 2:39 pm


I would love to win the Pogo stick. My son sure would love it! When I was a child my brother and I would jump on our pogo sticks for hours, until we put holes in my Dad’s driveway because we would jump so much!!

19 | @sagecram

September 13th, 2010 at 2:50 pm


Although it’s a toss up, I’ll vote for the pogo stick. I have the best memories of jumping on my pogo stick in the driveway! What fun!

20 | Alison

September 13th, 2010 at 3:54 pm


My girls would love to win one of the Karito Kids! :)

21 | Mike

September 13th, 2010 at 8:09 pm


I have 2 nieces ( 6 and 10) and they would love to enjoy either of these great giveaways…Pogo’s are soooo much fun…and of course dolls are great too….i had the old school GI JOE ones….must have been at least 11- 12 in tall…please enter me in for both if that is ok….Cheers

22 | Chantal

September 13th, 2010 at 8:12 pm


I will go for the pogo stick! Love Tag Along Toys. Shop there all the time (helps that I live in Kanata :) )

23 | Capital Mom

September 13th, 2010 at 8:35 pm


I am going to go with the doll, although it is a tough choice. :-)

24 | Amanda

September 13th, 2010 at 8:58 pm


I would go for the pogo stick as I know my dh would use non-stop when kiddies not around to use ;)

25 | Cody

September 13th, 2010 at 9:02 pm


Tag Along is a great store for families and teachers alike!! The dolls would be wonderful for my nieces! Both would enjoy them a lot :)

26 | Saje

September 13th, 2010 at 9:03 pm


My (busy, busy, BUSY) boys would love the pogo stick. It is a great alternative to TV and electronics!

Tried to enter from my BB this morning but it didn’t work.


27 | Alyson Fair

September 14th, 2010 at 5:29 am


Since I have two girls and don’t want to witness the after math of having only one doll….I would love to get the girls moving with the pogo stick. And I am sure mom & dad will enjoy it too!

28 | Beth

September 14th, 2010 at 6:51 am


Mine are too young for the pogo but the doll would be a huge hit with my little girl.

29 | Joanne

September 14th, 2010 at 6:58 am


We would love the Pogo stick! It would help keep my son busy while I prepare supper! :)

30 | DaniGirl

September 14th, 2010 at 10:11 am


LOL, what Julie Harrison said!! Also, the boys bounce voraciously anyway, better on the pogo stick than on my sofa, right?

31 | MommyJen

September 14th, 2010 at 10:14 am


Our girls would be very excited to win the Pogo stick … and what a fun way to burn off a little extra energy! We often shop at Tag Along Toys. They have such a great selection of toys.

32 | Kerry

September 14th, 2010 at 11:11 am


Little Miss would LOVE the dolls. Count me in…lucky # 32. :-)

33 | Amy @ Muddy Boots

September 14th, 2010 at 11:39 am


I’d love either actually! Although (clearly) not in the Ottawa area anymore, we still have loads of helpful friends and an Ottawa PO Box. So count me in too!

(Although if I have to pick just one to be entered in, I’ll take the pogo stick!)

34 | andrea

September 14th, 2010 at 2:36 pm


This entry is being posted on behalf of Valerie Houston, who may possibly be behind a firewall at work :)

“I’d like to add that my daughter toy-tested the Italian Karito Kid for the Cdn Toy Testing Council last year. They have a really great website that teaches the child about different countries through puzzle building, and other games. A portion of each purchase goes to a 3rd world charity – they give the child the choice on-line. There is also a book that comes with the doll, involving the girl/doll in an adventure.”

35 | Rebecca

September 14th, 2010 at 4:45 pm


I am torn, both seem great, although I think the doll would be very well received!

36 | Mary @ Parenthood

September 14th, 2010 at 8:53 pm


I already have the unicycle, so the pogo stick sounds more exotic. But actually I’d prefer the extremely expensive doll. I think my daughter and her cousins would love one of those, but I can think of a lot of things I’d rather spend a hundred dollars on.

37 | Brenda

September 15th, 2010 at 9:49 pm


Would love to win the pogo for my 7 yr old, as he has always wanted one.

38 | Pamela

September 16th, 2010 at 2:57 pm


The idea of a pogo stick rocks!!!!

39 | Holly

September 16th, 2010 at 2:59 pm


My son was in drooling over that exact pogo stick but the price didn’t quite match up with his piggy bank. ;)
Would love to win this for him! (maybe the ER wouldn’t agree hahaha)

40 | Jackie

September 16th, 2010 at 6:46 pm


The pogo stick would be great for my kids. I am trying to get them to do more real exercise. The wii to me doesn’t count!!!

41 | Tracie

September 16th, 2010 at 7:13 pm


I would love the doll for my daughter. She looks at them all the time in the store, but there is no way I’m spending that much on a doll :) (mean mommy).

42 | Danielle

September 16th, 2010 at 8:24 pm


I’d love to win the Karito doll for my 6 year old – what a great concept, and long overdue! To say our family is multi-cultural is a bit of an understatement… last night at dinner my 6 YO asked “what am I?” (prompted by a new friend at school who happens to be Chinese). It’s not a simple answer – DD’s combined ethnic background is Chinese, Finnish, Jamaican, First Nations, French, English, Irish and then some… It was a great teachable moment as we arrived at the obvious conclusion, we are “Canadian”.

43 | Jen_nifer

September 16th, 2010 at 10:07 pm


POGO stick please! I had one as a kid and loved it. And while my son isn’t big enough to use one yet, I’ll be happy to keep it in use until he is. :)

44 | Tara

September 17th, 2010 at 1:05 pm


I loved my pogo stick growing it. It had been passed down from my mother – Her Aunt brought it home from NYC by train years and years ago. I know my children would love it!

45 | Sherry

September 17th, 2010 at 3:23 pm


What a great giveaway! I would definitely choose the doll because my girls both like playing with them and although the pogo says it can be used indoors (and unless I locked it away it would be!) but my downstairs neighbors might campaign to have us evicted!

46 | suze

September 19th, 2010 at 10:02 am


My kids would love the pogo stick. My daughter’s dearest wish is for a trampoline of her very own, but she’s never seen a pogo stick before… It would blow her mind!

47 | Sherrie Guthrie

September 19th, 2010 at 10:15 am


The pogo stick all the way baby…live in the GOA (greater ottawa area)….;)

48 | Miss Vicky

September 19th, 2010 at 12:03 pm


oh my I would have a tough time choosing. The dolls are tempting as it is so hard to find dolls that aren’t babypowder scented and slathered in pink. AJ isn’t quite at the doll stage but my brother has 4 girls between 3 and 11 and I am certain that one of them would love one of these dolls

HOWEVER, I had a pogo stick when I was a girl and it was my absolute favourite thing, hands down. I would love to pass on that joy to my nieces (G is not quite big enough).


49 | Scott

September 19th, 2010 at 1:04 pm


Great offer. Thank you! I am certain our daughter would prefer the doll but our choice would be for the pogo stick – great exercise for our daughter (age 9) and our son (age 7).

50 | Janet Shaffer

September 19th, 2010 at 3:45 pm


The Pogo Stick would be perfect for a VERY bouncy grandaughter.

51 | Theresa

September 19th, 2010 at 8:22 pm


I would love to win a doll. I have 2 daughters, my youngest, 7, is a big doll lover, and the Karitos are so beautiful!

52 | Angela

September 20th, 2010 at 8:30 am


Hmmm…both great options…I would choose the doll. My 11 year old still tucks away and plays:)

53 | Ange

September 20th, 2010 at 8:32 am


Oh! I’d love to win the Foam Master Pogo Stick, as my son (8.5) loves anything active, and I remember absolutely loving a pogo stick as a child. I think he’d love it, too!

54 | Ann B (annbac9)

September 20th, 2010 at 8:34 am


Great giveaway! My kids would love the pogo stick. A great way for them to get some exercise and do something new and fun outside!!

55 | Danielle

September 20th, 2010 at 8:35 am


Would LOVE to win a Karito Doll! I have a 3 year old daughter who is just starting to get into doll playing. We are always looking for multicultural dolls that reflects the diversity our family and these are perfect! Great giveaway!!

56 | Brigitte Cusson

September 20th, 2010 at 8:42 am


I’d choose the Karito doll! We have triplet girls who are turning 1 on Oct 14th – and I haven’t bought them their first doll yet! This would be an awesome kickoff to their doll collection – which Im sure will just grow and grow each year!

57 | Neil Bakshi

September 20th, 2010 at 8:51 am


I’d love to win the pogo stick for our boy. My wife had a pogo stick and stilts her father made out of hockey sticks and talks about how much fun they were.

58 | Alison

September 20th, 2010 at 9:38 am


I’d like to win the Karito Doll for my daughter. It would be great to get her a realistic doll that helps teach about different cultures.

59 | Kimberly (McFishing)

September 20th, 2010 at 9:44 am


My oldest is 6 and I know she’d love the Karito Doll. She is gorgeous (of course!) redhead and always receives comments when we go out. It makes her feel uncomfortable but also unique. It would be good for her to have a doll that is also unique and have some of the interesting cultural stories that are behind the dolls as a good starting point of conversation about different cultures and appearances. Plus any excuse to go to Tag Along Toys!

60 | andrea

September 20th, 2010 at 11:01 am


Comments are now closed!

61 | andrea

September 20th, 2010 at 11:02 am


Hmmm. Date stamp says 11:01, but it is 12:01. Must look into that.

62 | andrea

September 20th, 2010 at 11:04 am


The winner of the Karito doll is Binki (comment 11!), who wrote:

“My youngest daughter would love the pogo and my eldest would love one of those dolls. Nice giveaway! Thanks.”

Congratulations Binki! I’ll connect with you via email ASAP. :)

63 | andrea

September 20th, 2010 at 11:11 am


The winner of the Pogo is Janet Shaffer (comment 50!) who wrote:

“The Pogo Stick would be perfect for a VERY bouncy grandaughter.”

Congratulations! I will drop you a line this afternoon. :)

Thanks again to Tag Along Toys for hosting this super giveaway! And thanks as well for all for your entries. I have some excellent giveaways coming up in the coming weeks, so stay tuned !

64 | Patti

September 20th, 2010 at 1:08 pm


Yeah thank you Andrea for doing this Giveaway with Tag Along Toys I truly enjoyed reading all the Comments that were left daily!
Thanks everyone who took part !!
Patti Tag Along Toys

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The Obligatory Blurb

My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our two daughters Emma (18) and Sarah (16). I am the managing editor of our community newspaper, the Kitchissippi Times. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger, and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999... which makes me either a total dinosaur or a veteran, I'm not sure which! The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, family travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa for families. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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