12 reasons to go to the Chicago Toy & Game Fair this year

Did you ever want to visit Santa’s Workshop?

If you combine thousands of toys and games, their respective ingenious inventors and hundreds of children waiting to explore said toys, you have the next best thing: The Chicago Toy & Game Fair.

Held Nov. 21-22 on Navy Pier, ChiTag features the best games and toys in the industry from around the world—everything from robotics to old-fashioned wooden toys, including some local goodies.Trust me, this fair is a toy haven, and it’s not just for kids.

ChiTag offers the opportunity to test your prospective holiday gifts (and buy them on the spot if you can’t resist), meet some of the creators, spark your imagination with new discoveries and best of all, have endless fun, guaranteed.

This year, you can take advantage of Sensory Power Hour. On a mission to be inclusive, ChiTag offers early entry for families with children with special needs both days from 9-10 a.m., which provides them with a less crowded setting to enjoy the fair. On Sunday, grandparents receive free admission.

So pack your energy, your kiddos and your blank Christmas shopping list! ChiTag will take care of it all.

Here are 12 things you absolutely must do at ChiTag:

  1. Feel inspired during the Young Inventor Challenge. Young creative minds will be showcasing their toy and game ideas. Perhaps it will inspire your own child to join the challenge in the future.
  2. Attend the adult-only playCHIC Fashion Show. Because we’re all children at heart, and we deserve to see our favorite toys materialized into haute couture pieces.
  3. See a life-sized Tonka Truck. Warning: it will be hard to keep the kiddos from wanting to drive it.
  4. Meet an inventor. Anyone up for meeting the brilliant minds behind Jenga, Operation or Shopkins?
  5. Enjoy Adventure Sandwich Live! This amazing cardboard world is sure to delight everyone with their interactive storytelling show. Think cardboard spacecraft, buildings, clouds and of course, sandwiches.
  6. Be amazed by Ben’s Bubble Show. As the caregiver of a child, you know that anything with bubbles is a hit.
  7. Take a picture of your children with Chase and Marshall by the Paw Patroller Bus. Little ones will be so happy to meet their doggie heroes.
  8. Let your children drive without a license. Let your children roam around the inflatable track with a car of their choice and drive the innovative go-karts from Berg.
  9. Admire a Giant Jenga. Anything giant is worth a visit.
  10. Morph into a soccer ball. That’s right, you can join a bubble soccer tournament.
  11. Partake in a spy mission. Chrono Bomb is a game that lets you create a laser field to perfect your spy skills. So grab the 27.5-foot string, create your field and crawl out before the bomb goes off.
  12. Prepare some tacos. Haywire Booth and Chicago’s Building Blocks Toy Store are partnering up to let you try Taco Takeover and other fun games. Whatever you do, please don’t fill your taco shell with a cockroach.

If you go


Nov. 21-22

Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand Ave., Chicago


- Advertisement -


Free Days for Chicago-Area Museums

Family fun that is easy on the wallet.

7 A+ Teacher Appreciation Week Gift Ideas

Teachers deserve some serious recognition.

Skydeck Chicago Family Guide

See their new interactive museum!

What to Pack for Family Vacation

Plan ahead with this list!

- Advertisement -