Taber toys

Do you remember that one Christmas morning, standing in front of the piles of presents under the tree? You open that one special package and there it was – the perfect toy. The toy you wished for all year, the toy you may still own, or at the very least, will never forget.

Childhood toys bring back special memories and remind us of a time of innocence in our lives.

This year’s holiday exhibit at the Thomas T. Taber Museum is aiming to bring back those memories and feelings to the community with the “My Favorite Toy” display.

The exhibit will be on display during normal museum hours from Nov. 23 to Jan. 18 in the museum’s community room, 858 W. Fourth St.

This is the third year for the holiday display. The first year featured dolls and doll houses, the second was teddy bears.

Gary Parks, museum director, said it seemed like a natural progression to go with toys for this year’s exhibit. Parks remembers when he received his favorite toy when he was seven years old – a spring-loaded toy cannon that shoots plastic cannon balls the size of tennis balls when you pull a string.

“I saw it in the Sears wish book,” Parks said. “And there it was under the Christmas tree.”

The F-Troop inspired cannon, that still shoots cannon balls to this day, will be on display among many other toys from those willing to contribute.

Community members all over Lycoming County are encouraged to donated their favorite toy for the duration of the exhibit for museum visitors to view and enjoy.

All items “borrowed” by the museum will be on display inside cases and larger items will be securely roped off. As with all items throughout the museum, the toys will be treated delicately and respectfully by museum staff.

Toy owners also may provide their name to display with their toy, as well as a story associated with the item. Any type of toy will be accepted for the display, including books or other non-traditional toys.

Parks said the teddy bear exhibit last year proved to be especially popular. There were 188 bears on display and grandparents brought their grandchildren to view the bears, while they reminisced about their own teddy bears that they had as a child.

Parks believes this year’s exhibit will be just as popular.

“I hope that people from all corners of the county respond to the exhibit,” he said. “This is their museum. This returns you to a more innocent time.”

Contributers also may provide multiple toys to be exhibited, if it is too hard to choose only one. Toys on display will be available for pickup after the exhibit closes on Jan. 18, 2014. Contributors should make arrangements with parks for toy pickup.

Toys should be brought to the museum during normal museum hours between the first and second weeks in November to be included in the display.

For more information about the exhibit or to contribute a toy, contact Parks at 570-326-3326.