Blog

Children's Toys, Latest News and Gift Ideas!

As your local neighborhood toy store, we've got information to share about our community, new toys, and gift ideas you might have never thought of! 

2022 Award for Best Toy Store!

and Best Locally Owned Business!

You guys!! You voted us Best Toy Store AND Best Locally Owned Business in this year's Pantagraph Readers' Choice Awards!   It's so FUN to win these awards, and they mean so much more in …
Read More
FIFTY FEST! Anniversary Party!

Saturday, July 30th

FIFTY FEST was AMAZING!!!!   On Saturday, July 30th, Gingerbread House Toys celebrated 50 Years with an Anniversary Party called FIFTY FEST! Our parking lot was full of FUN! And it was all free! It …
Read More
2022 Wink Alliance Announcement!

Official Press Release

June 24, 2022   GINGERBREAD HOUSE TOYS ANNOUNCES NEW WINK ALLIANCE PARTNERSHIP WITH SPECIAL OLYMPICS ILLINOIS   How one shop dog inspires a line of toys to help kids in central Illinois   Bloomington, IL – …
Read More
2022 Summer Digital Catalog

View, Click & Buy Today!

The Gingerbread House Toys Summer Playbook is here!   Browse below through the whole Digital Catalog, use the coupon on the back page, and shop locally online! Find your family's favorite new toys for summer, …
Read More
$12,500 Donation to Child Protection Network!

Thank you from the Wink Alliance!

Gingerbread House Toys partnered with the Child Protection Network of McLean County to be the second recipient of their annual giving program, the Wink Alliance. Named after their famous shop dog Wink, each year the Wink Alliance …
Read More
Easter Creation Station!

Now thru Easter!

Easter Creation Station! Now through April 16!  Build your own baskets!     Shopping for Easter can be hard, so let's make it easier! ...and more FUN! Introducing, the Easter Creation Station!   Right now …
Read More
Donate to Books for Kids!

March 7-19

Books for Kids! Now through Mar 19  Help Stock Ivy Rehab!   Together we can help little warriors on their road to recovery through the power of storytelling!    Last year we were inspired by …
Read More
WINNERS! 2022 LEGO Building Contest

See the amazing work from this year's winners!

The votes are in!!!   Congratulations to all our 2022 LEGO Building Contest winners and thank you to all of our competitors!  All of you make this event so much FUN!   IN STORE WINNERS …
Read More
Chicago Wax Hands on February 12th!

Come make 3D wax hand molds for Valentine's Day!

Starting at 10am Saturday, Feburary 12th, bring the kids to Gingerbread House Toys and get wacky with wax...because Chicago Wax Hands will be here! BOOK NOW   It's a super FUN Valentine's Day idea using …
Read More
LEGO Building Contest | Now Thru Feb 26!

Build it at your house, then bring it to our House!

Our 8th Annual LEGO Building Contest is February 14-26!   Your kid could win a $50 prize if their custom LEGO® creation is selected as the winner in their age category!      Build it …
Read More
It’s the Puzzle Rally!

Let’s donate 100+ old puzzles to local assisted living facilities!

January 20 – 31 is the 5th annual Puzzle Rally at Gingerbread House Toys! We love puzzles, especially in the winter months of January. But the only thing better than working on an old puzzle …
Read More
2021 Best Toys for the Holidays

Wink's Top Picks by Age!

When children play, they’re doing more than having fun – they’re learning and growing! But what toys are best for the littlest learners? How can I support what my kindergartner has been learning at school? …
Read More
30% Off Black Friday - ALL BOOKED!

Advance Appointments Only

ALL SLOTS ARE BOOKED!!! As of 11/23 all appointment slots for Black Friday are full. If you've already made your appointment, details are below. If you missed it, you can still come into the store …
Read More
Magic Tricks at Gingerbread House Toys

with Play Today!

Abracadabra Hocus Pocus Shazam! Get this gift before it vanishes into thin air! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, the Amazing Becca & the Magnificent Mikaela team-up to perform 3 magic tricks from …
Read More
Neighborhood Toy Store Day! WIN your Wishlist!

November 13, 2021

Saturday, Nov 13, bring the family to Gingerbread House Toys for Neighborhood Toy Store Day!   Our staff will be manning a handful of Toy Stations around the store, and giving live, interactive test demos …
Read More
2021 Wink Alliance Announcement!

Official Press Release

November 1, 2021   GINGERBREAD HOUSE TOYS ANNOUNCES NEW WINK ALLIANCE PARTNERSHIP WITH CHILD PROTECTION NETWORK   How one stuffed animal can help kids in central Illinois   Bloomington, IL – Gingerbread House Toys is partnering …
Read More
Massive Erupting Volcano at Gingerbread House Toys

with Play Today!

Build a massive volcano,but avoid the ground...because the pour is lava! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela aren’t making just any old volcano; they’re making a model of an ancient and …
Read More
Soccer Bots

with Play Today!

Bend it like a Bot, because this remote control sports toy is good-to-GOOOOOOALLLLL! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Mikaela & Becca become pitch legends as their robotic avatars battle for the Cup! …
Read More
Fuel ‘N Duel Rocket Racers at Gingerbread House Toys

with Play Today!

Your kids will have great chemistry when they fuel their next racing duel with high octane science! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela show you how to level-up your race …
Read More
Voted #1 Best Toy Store in 2021!

Bloomington, Illinois

You voted us Best Toy Store in the 2021 Pantagraph Readers' Choice Awards!   Thank you for choosing to play and grow with us!   It’s so much FUN to win and to know we're …
Read More
Rocket Ball Air Stacker

with Play Today!

So much fun you'll be floating on air! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Mikaela & Becca blast off with the Rocket Ball Air Stacker, a mesmerizingly fun toddler toy that uses the …
Read More
Glow in the Dark Lawn Darts

with Play Today!

Who will be crowned the Gingerbread House Toys lawn dart champion? It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela get outside and play some Glow in the Dark Lawn Darts! It’s fun …
Read More
We're Hiring!

Apply Now for Full & Part Time Positions!

Gingerbread House Toys is HIRING NOW for both part-time AND full-time positions, with 25-40 hrs/wk available!   We believe in the power of play, and we need your endless energy, positive passion, creative imagination, and …
Read More
New Episode! Duel Stomp Rockets

with Play Today!

Blast backyard competition to a higher level! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela have a good old fashioned stomping contest to see who can blast a rocket higher into the …
Read More
Bounce Balls and Faux Bows

with Play Today!

Ready. Set. BOUNCE! ...in   s l o w m o t i o n   with a surprise attack at the end!   It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, in a must-see …
Read More
July Anniversary Sale!

Now through July 31st In-Store Only!

The super fun Anniversay Sale is here! But it's in-store only so be sure to stop by before July 31st! Outside get 75% off! Inside pick a candle and see what your discount is!   There's a tent …
Read More
Summer Kidtivities with How-To Videos!

$5 Activity Every Week!

Summer Kidtivities! Come out and Play Today!   Quantities are limited and we can't order more! So when they're gone, they're gone! Act fast!   Starting May 27th, each week we're featuring a new Kidtivities kit …
Read More
Play Today! with Amahi Ukeleles!

Listen to our perfect harmony!

Sound ON! We’re singing ‘You Are My Sunshine’ on ukeleles! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela showcase some harmonizing vocal chops as they play with Amahi Ukeleles! With several fun-looking …
Read More
Play Today! with Mermaid Potions

Watch our New Episode!

Every Mermaid Princess needs a magic potion! It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela play with Mermaid Potions, using enchanted ingredients from under the sea to mix up some mer-magic of …
Read More
Wink Alliance Donates $13,750 to Marcfirst!

Official Press Release

| April 13, 2021 |   Gingerbread House Toys Donates $13,750 to Marcfirst   | How 500 Stuffed Animals turned into $13,750 |   How do you raise thousands of dollars to help kids in the Bloomington-Normal …
Read More
Play Today! with Zip & Go!

Watch our newest STEM episode!

Why ring a bell in 1 boring step when you can ring it in 27 exciting steps?!   It’s our toy show...Play Today!   This week, Becca & Mikaela play with Zig & Go, the …
Read More
Play Today! with Cosmic Mini Golf!

So nice we played it twice!

Just taaaaap it in! Give it a little tappy tap taparoo!   If you only watch one episode of our toy show Play Today!, make it this one! Complete with hilarious commentary and shocking hole-in-ones, …
Read More
Books for Babies! Stock the NICU

March 8-31, 2021

Together we can help the littlest warriors learn to recognize the voices of those who love them, through the power of storytelling! "When our granddaughter was born at St Francis in Peoria, she was transferred …
Read More
Play Today! with Fidget Toys!

Check out our newest episode!

Watch Becca & Mikaela play with Fidget Toys    Keep those hands busy! This week on Play Today!, Becca & Mikaela play with a huge variety of fidget toys...popping, squeezing, and stretching them to their …
Read More
Winners of 2021 LEGO Building Contest!

Ages 3-13 Announced

CONGRATULATIONS to our 2021 LEGO Building Contest Winners! THANK YOU to all contestants for building with us this year!!!   And remember to stop by the store to pick up your LEGO creations this week! …
Read More
Play Today! Episode 12

featuring DIY Miniature House

Help kids start exploring architecture and interior design! This week on PlayToday!, Becca plays with the DIY Miniature House, the perfect rainy day weekend project that promotes building, patience, and creative thinking. It even comes with …
Read More
Play Today! Returns!

featuring Plus-Plus

Play Today! is back! Kicking off Season 2, we are building entire jungles from a single shape!   This week on Play Today!, Becca & Mikaela play with Plus-Plus: the award-winning construction toy allowing kids to create …
Read More
LEGO Building Contest | Feb 15-27

Build it at your house, then bring it to our House!

Our 7th Annual LEGO Building Contest is February 15-27!   Your kid could win a $50 prize if their custom LEGO® creation is selected as the winner in their age category!      Build it …
Read More
2020 Best Toys for the Holidays

Wink's Top Picks for Every Age!

When children play, they’re doing more than having fun – they’re learning and growing!   But what toys are best for the littlest learners? My toddler is learning so fast! How can I help them …
Read More
Announcing the Wink Alliance with 2020 partner Marcfirst

Official Press Release

For Immediate Release November 14, 2020   GINGERBREAD HOUSE TOYS ANNOUNCES CREATION OF THE WINK ALLIANCE WITH INAUGURAL PARTNER MARCFIRST   How a shop dog became the symbol for helping kids in our community   …
Read More
12 Days of Giving - 2017

September 1st

On the 12 Days of Giving, the Gingerbread House gave to me… a way to give as easy as can be!   We are so excited to announce our fifth annual 12 Days of Giving …
Read More
The Foundry Grand Opening

June 13th, 2017 by Kate Greene

Join Green Top Grocery, The Gingerbread House, Bloomington Cycle & Fitness and The Coffee Hound for a day filled with music, fun, sales and promotions! This Saturday, June 17th from 1-5pm! Event Schedule:  1-5pm at Green Top Grocery enjoy LIVE JAZZ …
Read More
Friends and Family Sale!

October 3rd, 2016 by Kate Greene

20% off the ENTIRE Store! We want to say thanks. Thanks to all our friends and family who stick by us through this adventure! We appreciate you all and want to say say thanks. Our …
Read More
12 Days of Giving - 2016

August 18th 2016 by Kate Greene

On the 12 Days of Giving, the Gingerbread House gave to me… a way to give as easy as can be!   We are so excited to announce our fourth annual 12 Days of Giving …
Read More
The Gingerbread House Finds New Home in Community

June 28th, 2016 by Kate Greene

Bloomington, Ill., June 28, 2016 – They say wherever you hang your hat is home. This week, the Gingerbread House has announced it will hang its hat in a new location beginning in early Spring 2017. …
Read More
Teacher Appreciation with the Dailey Method

May 1st 2016 by Kate Greene

May 2nd - May 7th   In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, we are excited to give a 20% discount and a coupon for a free three day exercise class from our generous friend's at …
Read More
Ducky Derby Discount

You've unlocked the code!

Thank you for attending the Chicago Duck Derby on August 4th and supporting Special Olympics Illinois!   If you found yourself here, congratulations! You've unlocked the code for Free Shipping!   Enter this code for …
Read More