KidsPost's Summer Toy Guide: For Outdoor, Water, Travel and More

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

School's out and it's time to play. Whether your summer plans include an exotic vacation, a comforting trip to Grandma's or just a ton of outdoor time, you want some good toys to enjoy during your school-free months. We've found some cool new ideas that are sure to be a hit with you and your friends, as well as some familiar toys that have been reintroduced with a fun twist. For example, if you're going to play with a ball outside, why not play with one that can bounce 75 feet in the air? We knocked out a few ceiling tiles here at KidsPost "testing" it for you. (These toys are widely available, except where noted.)

-- Margaret Webb Pressler

Outside Play

Fortamajig, Happy Kid Co., 6+, $70. (Available at http://www.thehappykidcompany.com.) Build a tent, fort, clubhouse or just a sunshade with this eight-foot square of high-quality tent material loaded with fasteners and loops. It's great for indoor forts, too, because it's so lightweight.

Maxi Kick Scooter, Kickboard USA, 6-10, $150. This super-smooth scooter is more like a skateboard: There's a handle for balance and an excellent brake, but you lean your body to steer it. Even with double wheels in the front that add the stability of a skateboard, this scooter has a high cool factor.

Sky Ball (top right), Maui Toys, all ages, $9. This ball looks like any other mid-size bouncy ball -- until it pops up over your head. The bounce in this ball is incredible, so get your friends together and see who can make it go the highest.

Wind Chaser Stunt Kite, Spin Master, 8+, $30. If you've never been able to do much more with a kite than barely get it airborne, you'll like this version's built-in stunt action. The controller at the end of the line makes the kite dip and dive! You'll need a pretty windy day for this one, though!

Outdoor Water Play

AquaGlider, Zing Toys, 5+, $10. (Available at http://www.aquaglider.us.) For every foot deep it is released, this cool glider will travel 10 feet through water. (Release it three feet down, and watch it glide for 30!) Adjustable wings make it curve or go straight.


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