2014 Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards
While working in-house for the trade association for the North American toy industry, The TAGS Group founder Stacy Leistner produced the annual Toy of the Year (TOTY) Awards, a 600+ person celebration that recognized the best toys of the year in 12 categories, inducted honorees into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame, and raised funds for the industry's foundation. Leistner and his in-house team managed all aspects of the awards nomination and selection process; planning for the 2014 event was supported by a team of industry volunteers, association staff and the event production company, Sequence Events.
About the 2014 Event
The 2014 Toy of the Year awards began with a musical sparkle as guests arrived at the Grand Hyatt Hotel for the annual 'grown up' event for the toy industry. Stiltwalking greeters with glowing hairdos and an electric violinist kept guests entertained during the opening dinner reception. As attendees made their way to "Club TOTY" on an upper floor, the volume was pumped up on the musical theme as fog machines, strobe lights, lasers and the sounds of a DJ host ushered guests to their cabaret-style seats where they found wine and cheese plates for a mid-ceremony snack. Straight from the stages of America's Got Talent, the opening performance by iLuminate kicked off the show with a glowing start that was continued later in the evening as bags filled with glow sticks and glow jewelry were distributed to every guest prior to the announcement of the evening's big winners. A special performance by the Show Choir from the LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts laid the underpinning for a brief in memorium tribute, while a musical tribute to the founders of the Wham-O toy company anchored the evening's dessert reception.