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Step Inside a Store That Takes Fun Extremely Seriously

As you stroll along the vibrant NW 23rd Shopping District in Portland, Oregon, you can find boutiques, cafes & salons.

But there’s only one toy store.

Delight is everywhere in Child's Play Toys, Portland OR
photo by Amy Vining Photography

Walk into Child’s Play Toys on any given weekend and you’ll see walls and shelves stocked with uncommon games & books. You’ll encounter toys hanging from the ceiling & stuffed animals peeking out at you from unexpected places.

But the most remarkable thing you’ll notice is the space, intentionally set aside for play & discovery.

Owner Pat Fiedler makes sure there's space for discovery & learning
photo by Amy Vining Photography

“If there isn’t space to try it out or set out a demo, it’s not going to be as much fun for the customer,” says Megan Perona, assistant manager at Child’s Play. “Customers don’t come in just to buy a toy, they come in for an experience of fun and joy, and we hope they find that each and every time they visit.”

Creating Smiles for Generations of Kids

When she first opened Child’s Play in 1979, owner Pat Fiedler, wanted to create a place for families to find good quality, imaginative toys for their children. And more than 35 years later, she still delights in serving her community.

“Toys are a wonderful thing to be able to sell,” says Pat. “People come in, and how could you possibly not be happy when you see all these bright colors?”

Everything Child’s Play offers is thoughtfully selected and artfully placed, in order to create a fun destination for both kids & grown-ups. They also host events throughout the year, including an annual Star Wars celebration every November complete with character appearances.

Sharing the Rewards of Play

As a business that believes in the benefits of play & learning, Child's Play is committed to supporting educators. A percentage of all sales from their Star Wars celebration is donated to the neighborhood grade school. Child’s Play also has a standing 10% discount for teachers purchasing items for the classroom.

What has been the biggest change in running a toy store since the days when Child’s Play first opened?

“Trends change faster these days,” Megan observes. “Keeping up on the must-have gift for new moms or the latest grade school classroom trend definitely keeps us on our toes.”

But one thing that hasn’t changed is just how rewarding the work can be.

We get to find the perfect toy to brighten a kid’s day and make a parent’s job just a bit easier,” says Megan. “There is a lot of satisfaction that comes from that.”

In a store whose motto is “Smiles Guaranteed!” what else would you expect?


At Handcrafted HoneyBee, we’re passionate about helping to open minds through fun & play. That’s why we are so proud to know that our Create-Your-Own Skin Care Kits are on the shelves of Child’s Play Toys!

You can find Child’s Play at 2305 NW Kearney St, in the heart of the Alphabet Historic District. Also, check out their website, http://www.childsplayportland.com to see the fun events they have planned this month!

All photographs from this post are courtesy of Amy Vining Photography.

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