The Toys R Us flagship store in Times Square was at one time the largest toy store in the world. And on occasion it would get so packed with people, both big and little, that a line had to be formed outside the door because maximum occupancy had been reached. People young and old wanted to be a part of the Times Square Toys R Us phenomena. They wanted to witness the larger than life toyland with their own eyes. So, of course this store was going to be very busy.
Not gonna lie though, if there was a line wrapping around the outside of the store on one of my visits, there was no way in hell we were stepping foot in that store. Saturdays visits were out of the question completely. We did not even go near the area. We went once on a Saturday and I swore to Jesus in heaven never again! Sorry, not sorry. If I wanted my blood pressure and rage to be pushed to maximum level, I would have joined the PTA.
Thankfully we would visit NYC on weekdays here and there, so the crowds in the store were smaller during the week. You could actually enjoy the store and all the fun and fascinating things it beheld without the fear of being pushed, shoved and trampled. It was good times. Now let's talk about some of the fun and fascinating things that made Toys R Us times Square so popular.
|The coolest Ferris Wheel!|
When the store closed, Toys R US donated the super fun cars to the "Give Kids The World Village" in Orlando, Florida. Every Thursday the cars can be seen as parade floats in the weekly Winter Carnival Parade which runs all year long. I am glad to see those adorable cars are still being used to make children smile.
|Loved the monopoly car.|
This flagship store also boasted a life sized Barbie Dream House filled with so much pink and glistening blonde hair that you actually needed to sip some bourbon while puffing on a Toscana in a cigar bar to come down from the extreme overdose of perfectly tanned, plastic perfection. And that was just what the moms did to recover. I have no idea how the dads coped. I am not sure I wanna know either.
The giant mechanical T-Rex located in the Jurassic World part of the store was also a fun time, especially if it was your first ever visit to the store. If it didn't make you shit your pants or give you heart palpitations, your chances of surviving the store practically quadrupled. Don't get me wrong, the T-Rex was way cool. We all loved it but I was also very thankful that it was a fake dinosaur. Seriously, if those dinosaurs ever escape their dinosaur island, we are all in trouble and Jeff Goldblum will have some explaining to do.
|The Barbie House|
On the second or third level of the store was Lego city. I don't think I have ever seen so many different Lego kits in my life. The Lego sculptures throughout this level were pretty sweet too. The Statue of Liberty creation was the showpiece of the displays. It was amazing. There was also a very large, very detailed reconstruction of a Wookie called Chewbacca. This Wookie sometimes goes by the name Chewy for those of you who are not familiar with his full name.
Moving on. The game room located on the bottom level was sick. It had every game and gaming system known to man. My kids could spend hours in that room perusing all the games, testing out the latest systems and ogling all the video game plushes and merchandise for sale.
In fact, now that I think about it, we did spend hours in there. I could walk around the entire store four times, ride the subway to Little Italy for an alfresco lunch, take in a Broadway show, then return to the store only to find my kids still weren't done browsing. Ok. Maybe I am exaggerating a little about Mommy's little gamers. But, maybe I am not.
Another happy time to be had was at Wonka World on the second level. Wonka World was filled with all types of sugary sweet treats from the mind of Willy Wonka. I was never a fan of the Gobstoppers but Bottlecaps happened to be a favorite of mine growing up, especially the cola flavored ones. They were only 15 cents a pack back then. I have no idea what they cost now.
Nerds were another favorite. They were a quarter for the dual flavored boxes. You could choose the Orange and Cherry flavored box or the Grape and Strawberry flavored box. I loooooved the Strawberry ones. Sometimes I would almost choke to death when a random little nerd would escape from the pile I poured into my mouth and find it's way into my windpipe. I had to start limiting my consumption of Nerds due to the ear death experiences they sometimes brought. But, when they first came out they were the bomb!
Gene would tell me to hold my breath, make a wish, then count to three.
I would hear what sounded like a xylophone or some bells gently start to play.
Gene would sing, "Come with me and you'll be in a world of pure imagination."
Then a creepy Oompa Loompa would jump out of nowhere and try to steal my soul.
When that happened, I ran for my life towards Candy Land. F that! I would rather take my chances with the Molasses Swamp than be terrorized by a 3 foot high orange man with bright green hair. Candyland was one of my most favorite childhood games. I loved all the pretty girly colors of candy land. I also loved candy.
Candyland in Toys R Us was literally as if the game board had come to life. The colors, the gingerbread men, and the Candyland characters greeted everyone entering their special part of the store. Seeing edible creations from this game took me straight back to my childhood. Toys R Us Times Square made me feel like a little girl again.
Then it closed. 2015 was the last year Toys R Us operated in Times Square. The reason, it was too expensive to lease that location. I could only imagine. Rumors has it though that Toys R Us is looking for a new location for it's flagship store in NYC. You never know. We may see an even bigger, more fantastical, more creative store yet. Time will tell.