Flying off the shelves: Hot toys this holiday season

ESCANABA – With Christmas right around the corner many children have already submitted their wish lists, but for the parent who doesn’t know what’s hot this holiday season retailers have been keeping track.

According to a survey conducted by the National Retail Federation’s 2013 Holiday Consumer Survey, 44.3 percent of holiday shoppers planned to buy toys this holiday season. Classic toys like LEGOs and Barbie dolls still top the list for toys that consumers plan to give as gifts to children this holiday season.

“It’s LEGO City…,” said Escanaba Kmart Store Manager Theresa Prosen of what she believes to be the top selling toy for boys at her store this holiday season. The series of play sets let children create their own cities complete with police stations, fire planes, and trains.

LEGOs also top the list at the Escanaba Walmart, where employees are reporting Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle themed toys are also popular. While LEGOs topped the NRF list of toys for boys, Ninja Turtles themed toys barely made the list, tying with bicycles for the number 10 spot nationally.

For girls, Walmart employees are reporting that toys featuring characters from the Disney animated series “Doc McStuffins” are popular with shoppers again this year. The series, which is aimed at preschool age children, features a six-year-old girl who is a doctor to stuffed animals that magically come to life. Particularly popular with shoppers is the Doc McStuffins Get Better Checkup Center, which allows children to pretend to heal toys themselves.

Also popular with girls are the Rebelle line of Nerf guns. The guns feature pink, purple, and turquoise darts. Some of the guns are designed to look like bows and crossbows.

K-Mart is reporting that Monster High dolls are popular too. The dolls, which are inspired by monster movies, ranked third on the NRF’s top toys for girls list this year.

For both boys and girls the FurReal Friends Cuddles My Giggly Monkey Pet animatronic toy is popular with Walmart shoppers. The toy responds to children when they rock, cuddle, tickle, feed, or change its diaper.

Also popular this year with area shoppers are PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles. With boys the Xbox One nudged out the PlayStation 4 on the NRF’s list with the two consoles ranking fifth and sixth respectively. On the girls list, PlayStation 4 consoles barely made the list – tying with My Little Pony toys for 10th place. Xbox Ones did not make the list for girls.

Not all holiday purchases are gifts or are for children. Many adults are treating themselves this holiday season to new Christmas lights and holiday decor.

“I think more people are getting into the decorating, which is fun. It’ll be nice to drive around and see all the lights,” said Prosen.