For Christmas this year, I want to shop local as much as possible.
I find that locally owned toy stores have a much better selection of high-quality and educational toys. I also find that the smaller stores are less overwhelming when my children want to find a toy on their own. Local toy stores generally have a much friendlier atmosphere. Best of all, my money will go towards supporting local families. Shop on!
My kids love all the toys and books at the gift shop. Every time we visit the Shelburne Museum, they want to buy just about everything they see. The only way I can usually make it out of the store without spending all my money is by promising that I will do some Christmas shopping here. I like that the toys in the gift shop are educational and are often linked to some of the museum exhibits. As a bonus, there are also plenty of great gifts for adults, too. I like shopping for my children and adult family members all in one stop. Plus, I have my eye on some nice earrings for me!
Also located in Shelburne, Jame Two Coats Toy Shop is a small store stuffed completely full of wonderful toys. I found some great toys here for a long road trip. My son loves the Lego room and has a hard time choosing between Lego sets and Lego books. My daughter loves all the dolls. I love that all the toys meet my approval for quality. These toys will stand up to some hard loving from your children! Jamie Two Coats also offers gift wrapping, which is a great option for those last minute presents you forgot to buy earlier!
Located at the Essex Outlets & Cinema, this toy store is focused on educational toys. They have everything from science kits to puzzles to craft kits. My kids particularly like the wide variety of board games that are available for all age levels. I enjoy the wide selection of classic toys, such as kites, wooden blocks, and tops. If you are short on time, they also have an extensive amount of toys to purchase online. To top off all that, Turner Toys & Hobbies also hosts a wide variety of events at their store, such as Tabletop Game Night.
Stop by this store in Jericho to both shop and get your clothing tailored. This is one time that your children will actually want to accompany you on your errands. My children could spend hours checking out all the Melissa & Doug toys alone. As usual, my son also gravitates towards the Legos while my daughter gets drawn in by the dolls and stuffed animals. Besides the toys, there are also a lot of other items available, such as candles, jewelry, and Willow Tree figurines. With balloons available and a free gift wrapping station, this store is a great last minute stop on the way to a birthday party.
Kidstructive Fun has a location in downtown Burlington and one across Lake Champlain in Plattsburg, New York. They have a great selection of toys. You will be sure to find something for every age here, whether it’s a puppet, a puzzle, or a dollhouse. If you are too busy to shop in person, they have a well-organized website that you can browse through at your convenience. As a bonus, Kidstructive Fun’s website also has games and coloring pages to keep your children entertained.
If you’re in Montpelier, drop by Woodbury Mountain Toys. Their selection of games is sure to please any child. I am also impressed with their selection of old-fashioned wooden toys. There are just so many toys and games to explore here and all of them are high-quality items. My favorite part of this store is the warm, welcoming atmosphere that makes you feel at home.
Located in Richmond, this toy store offers a great selection of gifts for pretend play. They have a large assortment of costumes and role playing attire for children who love to dress up. They also have a good selection of play food and utensils to stock up your play kitchen. My kids love all the play food! I love that Stargazer Gifts and Toys also carries handmade Vermont items, such as Maple Landmark Woodcraft toys and Silver Forest jewelry. On top of all that, they also offer free gift wrapping!
Found in Stowe, this store offers a great mix of toys from both around the world and local sources. My kids love the wide selection of building toys. I appreciate that Once Upon a Time Toys carries building toys for every age so that younger children can avoid frustration and older children can avoid boredom. I love that you can find some unique items at this store, such as singing skirts. What little performer wouldn’t love that?
When I first heard about the Frozen Ogre, I immediately pictured Shrek on ice skates. Instead, this is a store in St. Albans that offers frozen yogurt, candy, games, toys, and hobby supplies. There is no need to shop on an empty stomach at this store! I love that this store has a downstairs game space that often hosts afterschool and evening gaming events.
This store has locations in Essex, Burlington, Rutland, and Chester. I love how thoughtfully this store has chosen what books to carry. I feel good about buying any of them that my kids pick up at Phoenix Books. Besides the wonderful selection of books, the stores also carry some educational toys and games for children. This is a great store to shop for adults, too, with wide selections of books and other gifts. The stores also host all kinds of events, both for adults and children.