Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Pop On Pals Amusement Park Play Set - Product Review

Every August my family attends the county fair. We go to see the animals, eat fried cheese curds, and, of course, ride on a few carnival rides. Amusement parks and carnivals excite and delight children. As a kid, I looked forward to dizzying ride of the spinning Tilt-a-whirl and soaring to great heights in a Ferris wheel. This week my children had the chance to pretend they were at the fair by playing with a new toy - the Pop On Pals Amusement Park Play Set.

Pop On Pals, a new toy line out from Spin Master, sells an Amusement Park Play Set where toddlers and preschoolers can create their own ride and carnival scenarios using their imagination. Thanks to Team Mom, my kids had the chance to try out the play set and had fun "popping" rings on a Pop On Pals figure.

The interactive Pop On Pals Amusement Park Play Set allows children to explore the fun carnival world through play. The set plays music, lights up, has many moving parts, and comes with a Pop On Pals figure with interchangeable character rings. It includes a ferris wheel, a swinging dragon ride, a strong man striker, milk toss game and a roller coaster with a removable car -- all in one toy. Three AA batteries power the set.

This particular play set style reminds me of my children's Little People play sets. It is a similar size and has many similar features including sound and circular places for the figures to sit. The figures are the main difference. The Pop On Pals have a special design that allow children to change the look of the figure by popping on various differently styled rings. Kids can add arms, change the clothes, etc., by pushing the figure directly down on top of the rings. My son loves to hop the character around on the floor - it makes a clicking sound when you press down on it - and he really likes to pop on the rings. Watch how easy it is in this video of him playing with the figure included with our set:

We were actually kind of sad that the set only came with one figure, but at least it came with three different rings to pop on and off. You can buy extra figures and pop on rings separately. My daughter was excited to see that the Pop On Pals line includes a pet line and really wants one of the kitties, dogs or even the turtle. They do look super cute. So far the Amusement Park has held up pretty well to the rough hands of my toddler. He likes roller coaster part and calls it a "train track" though he does have a few issues trying to align the cart on the track. I'm particularly impressed by the Ferris wheel and dragon swing mechanism. The Ferris wheel or dragon swing moves by pushing down on a lever on the side of the toy. At first we weren't sure what the knob was for on the side (the instructions aren't very detailed), but quickly realized that it was a switch so the user can change back and forth between the Ferris wheel and Dragon swing - they operate separately but use the same lever. The toy mostly lends itself only to one-sided play, although the roller coaster part can be used from both sides. Overall, the Amusement Park is an entertaining addition to our play set collection - it's full of endless "Popabilities!"

Thanks to Pop On Pals and Team Mom for this review opportunity and for providing a play set for my family to review. (View my full disclosure statement for more information about my reviews.)

Pop On Pals products are available for purchase at many retailers including Toys R Us,, Target. For more information, visit