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Toy Fair Takes Its Show On The Road

Toy Fair 2023 Logo

After a three-and-a-half-year absence, Toy Fair returned to the Big Apple and its home at the Javits Center this weekend, and it brought back a genuine sense of comfort to the folks here at RAGE Works. While the event featured over 1000 companies and numerous reveals, something seemed off this year. Perhaps it was the absence of fan favorites like Mezco and Mattel or the more scaled-down Hasbro offsite event, which was a far cry from their presence in previous years. While there were notable differences, many companies brought their best and gave journalists and retailers plenty to look forward to for the upcoming holiday season as well as the new year.

But, amid the excitement of toys, collectibles, and in-person connections, there was a specter of trouble whispered among my fellow toy aficionados: Toy Fair would be leaving NYC. There were plenty of theories and rumblings about timing, destinations, and so on throughout the weekend, and as we drove home from the event on Sunday, those rumors became true with the Toy Association releasing its upcoming Toy Fair schedule. The next Toy Fair will be held in New York City on March 1–4, 2025, at the Javits Center, so there will be no event in 2024.

So When And Where Is The Next Toy Fair?

Toy Fair trades the Javits Center in NYC for the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, beginning with the first event on January 17–20, 2026. The Toy Association also confirmed New Orleans as the location for the 2027 and 2028 Toy Fair events. Attendees will trade their NY dirty water dogs and pretzels for beignets and po'boy sandwiches.

“After gathering opinions from key retailers, members/exhibitors of The Toy Association and based on a number of evaluation factors including timing, high-quality space availability, access to transportation, and affordability for exhibitors and attendees, it became clear that New Orleans would be the best fit for the Toy Fair – and best meet the needs of all our diverse guests,” said Steve Pasierb, President & CEO of The Toy Association. “New Orleans has state-of-the-art facilities including a brand-new airport, renowned restaurants, museums, music, an array of event spaces, and a strong collaborative partnership between the Convention Center, New Orleans & Company, and the business community, making it a perfect, welcoming fit for Toy Fair. We are confident in delivering a high-quality, energetic, and seamless Toy Fair experience over the next four shows, in the same way we have been delivering on this promise for more than 100 years.”

As a long-time attendee, I was deeply saddened to read that press release. Toy Fair was an important part of my work with both My Take Radio and RAGE Works. It not only allowed me to fulfill a childhood dream of reading about the event in Wizard Magazine and other publications as a child to covering it and experiencing it year after year, but it was also an event where many lasting friendships were formed with fellow toy journalists, many of whom we still collaborate with today. Of course, everyone's attention is focused on 2025 and the final NYC Toy Fair, which I am sure will be a memorable event.

Keep it locked to RAGE Works for more Toy Fair 2023 coverage, and also make sure to check out content partners at Nerd News Today for their coverage of the event as well.