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A daily look back at the toys, games, and objects that captured our attention as children and continue to fascinate us today.

The Friday Five

Look into the minds of movers and shakers in the play industry – five questions, one fascinating person.

The Friday Five: Tony and Carmen Matthews

Tony and Carmen Matthews are the creators of Diecast Heroes, a magazine exploring the custom Hot Wheels community. Here, the duo explain how documenting global car culture led to their involvement in the diecast community and share how some customisers are turning their hobby into full-time work.

The Friday Five: Sarah Myers

Sarah Myers is director of travelling exhibits at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. In this edition of The Friday Five, she shares details of the newly opened SCOOBY-DOO!™ Mansion Mayhem exhibit.

The Friday Five: Todd Coopee

Todd Coopee is a toy collector, historian, and editor-in-chief here at Toy Tales. In this edition of The Friday Five, he shares details of the recently opened Bringing Imaginative Ideas to Life: The Early Years of Cincinnati’s Kenner Products mini-exhibit at The Strong and discusses the importance of preserving the history of toys and games.

The Friday Five: Alyssa Esparaz

Alyssa Esparaz is an organizing committee member for the Rubik’s WCA North American Championship 2022, taking place this summer in Toronto, Ontario. In this edition of The Friday Five, she shares details of the inaugural North American event and explains why the championship is about more than competition and podiums.

The Friday Five: A.J. Jacobs

A.J. Jacobs is a New York Times bestselling author, journalist, NPR commentator, and TED speaker. In this edition of The Friday Five, A.J. talks about his latest book, The Puzzler, and reveals the characteristic he feels holds a secret to living a good life.

The Friday Five: Mariah Hughes

Mariah Hughes is the marketing coordinator at the National Corvette Museum. In this edition of The Friday Five, she reveals details of the highly anticipated Hot Wheels: Race to Win exhibit and shares why she thinks society is obsessed with high-performance cars.

The Friday Five: Jennifer Kretchmar

Jennifer Kretchmar is chief digital and merchandising officer at Build-A-Bear Workshop. In this edition of The Friday Five, Jennifer reveals what consumers can look forward to seeing as the company celebrates its 25th anniversary, and describes how the company has evolved over the years.

The Friday Five: Marck Højbjerg Matthiasen

Marck Højbjerg Matthiasen is CEO of Danish toy company, dantoy. In this edition of The Friday Five, Marck shares the company’s recent product and manufacturing innovations and gives insight into the challenges of developing a more sustainable approach to toy manufacturing.

The Friday Five: Blake Wright

Blake Wright is the founder and publisher of TOYCOLLECTR, a new print magazine created specifically for collectors of action figures. In this edition of The Friday Five, Blake shares what readers can expect from the magazine and how the publication expands on his popular trilogy of books, Toys That Time Forgot.

The Friday Five: Fred Trust

Fred Trust is founder of the Wizard of Oz Museum in Cape Canaveral, Florida. In this edition of The Friday Five, Fred shares details of his expansive personal collection of Oz memorabilia and reveals how his childhood in the former Soviet Union sparked an early interest in the classic L. Frank Baum story.

The Friday Five: Philippe de Lespinay

Philippe de Lespinay is the author of Slot Car Dreams, a retrospective of the Golden Age and evolution of slot car racing. In this edition of The Friday Five, Philippe shares how he became a recognized authority on the subject of slot cars and why the book took 10 years to produce.

The Friday Five: Bachir Zeroual

Bachir Zeroual is chief marketing officer for Tastemaker’s Arcade1Up. In this edition of The Friday Five, Bachir shares insights about the ever-changing video game market and his thoughts on the next big trend in arcade-style home gaming.

The Friday Five: Michael Mingoia

Michael Mingoia is the director of exhibitions at the Napa Valley Museum Yountville in California. In this edition of The Friday Five, Michael shares details of the current exhibition titled DANGEROUS GAMES: Treacherous Toys We Loved As Kids and explains the social function of toys and play.

The Friday Five: Christina Nix Lynch

Christina Nix Lynch is director of licensing at King Features Syndicate. In this edition of The Friday Five, Christina talks about how the company is reimagining classic characters for new audiences–including Popeye, Olive Oyl, Blondie, and Flash Gordon.

The Friday Five: Montana Hoeren

Montana Hoeren is head of brand at Hornby. In this edition of The Friday Five, Montana talks about Hornby: A Model World, a new television series that offers an inside look at all that goes into creating products at the pioneering model railway maker.

The Friday Five: Michael Riley

Michael Riley is the chief brands officer at WildBrain. In this edition of The Friday Five, Michael shares the media company’s plans for the Strawberry Shortcake brand and explains WildBrain’s approach to reinterpreting beloved classic characters for new audiences.

The Friday Five: Doug Putman

Doug Putman is the new owner of the iconic Toys”R”Us and Babies”R”Us Canada brands. In this edition of The Friday Five, Putman discusses his personal vision for the stores and shares where he feels business schools fall short when cultivating entrepreneurs.

The Friday Five: Kelly Woon

Kelly Woon is vice president and general manager of Canadian operations for Funrise, a California-based toymaker. In this edition of The Friday Five, Kelly offers her observations on the booming collectibles market and imparts advice for those wanting to excel in the toy industry.