Courtesy of Top Ten Toys
Awesome Book or Toy Shop
Winner: Top Ten Toys
Readers love Top Ten Toys so much that it has snagged the top Golden Teddy award for several years running. Its varied selection of toys supports the fundamentals of play: motor skills, visual learning, creative play, language development, logical thought and learning through music. At Top Ten Toys, located in the Greenwood neighborhood, you’ll find old-school wooden toys, educational and creative toys, and unique games, but you won’t find violent toys or media-based playthings. Readers love the friendly atmosphere, where kids can try out the merchandise or just play while parents shop. One reader sums up its appeal nicely: “Best toy store in the city, and the wrapping station is a pre-birthday-party dream come true!”
“A boutique shop with stuff you don’t see everywhere,” comments one concise customer about The Curious Bear Book & Toy Shop, which is located next door to Paper Luxe Stationery & Gifts in Fircrest. Both stores are run by a mother and her daughter, and their family touch is evident thanks to the number of reader comments praising the staff. Curious Bear specializes in modern STEM- and Montessori-inspired toys as well as a carefully selected collection of children’s books.
Secret Garden Books has been an institution in independent bookstores for more than 40 years. Readers rave about the friendly, knowledgeable staff, wide selection and convenient location. The store offers opportunities for both adults and tweens to join a book club — but not at the same time, because the Young Readers Society is for kids ages 8–12 and no parents are allowed. Additionally, the shop, located in Ballard, offers free gift wrapping and discounts for educators and book club members, as well as a variety of author events.
Snapdoodle Toys has “over-the-top customer service,” according to one reader. With stores in Redmond and Kenmore, Snapdoodle stocks unique toys as well as a wonderful book selection. Add in the free story times, drop-in “playdays” and a fun program called Paint Me a Story, and you can see why Snapdoodle is a Golden Teddy finalist. At the Kenmore location, parents can even enjoy a free latte or cuppa as they browse.
With locations in Lake Forest Park, Seward Park and Ravenna, Third Place Books is a community-minded bookstore where patrons can buy and sell quality used books or browse an extensive collection of new books.