Retro Toys for Your Kids

December 3, 2003--Posted at 5:45 p.m.

JONESBORO, AR--If you're still trying to figure out what to get your kids for Christmas, you might need to take a trip to the mall, you might want to take a trip back in time.

Do you remember Pick Up Sticks?  It's a game that took a steady hand, like most of the toys from years gone by that were all about hands on. You remember the ones with no batteries needed.

"It's the old stuff, you have to sit and play with it and it's good for their growing up and their development," says retro toy shopper Jim Pominville. "Slinky dogs and little games, that kids don't even know what they are now, we have to buy them so we can show them how to do it."

Of course, that's the fun for us and a good excuse to get down to the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and pick up some of the retro toys for a cruise down "Whamo" lane.

"When we set up the display for the nostalgia toys, they're like, we didn't know these still existed," said Adrienne McCcollum the retail manager at Cracker Barrel. "That is one of the good things. You have people coming in and saying, oh my gosh, I remember playing with these when I was a kid."

Most of the parents and grandparents we talked to said the hi-tech toys of today are great, but it's the simple toys, like the slinky that leave a lasting impression.

"Even though we have computers and high tech instruments, those are good as well, but I think the simple things are the basics of life," said parent Dennis Duty. "The retro toys are about getting back to simplicity and just enjoying being a kid."

And you're never too young or old to enjoy that.

A number of retro toys can purchased at The Cracker Barrel Old Country Store here in Jonesboro. For some of the other toys you remember, try searching the Internet. They can usually be found, but you'll probably pay a premium.