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Fun Times in Atlanta

Last week I spent 6 days in Atlanta at the AmericasMart looking for new items to bring to sell this Spring and in our 2017 Christmas Shop. One of my favorite places to stop is Channel Craft Toys. We started selling his toys last year and they went over great. Dean Helfer, Jr, President and Founder of Channel Craft has been creating Authentic American Toys, Games & Puzzles for 34 years. Each is handcrafted of the finest materials from the good old USA.

When you walk into his showroom it’s like walking into your childhood. Tiddly Winks, Jumbo Jacks and Pick Up Sticks are just a few toys that are laid out for you to touch and play with while drinking a terrific root beer float. Dean is always so excited to show off all of his toys.  This year he invited his buyers to dinner at Fat Matt’s Rib Shack in Atlanta. Oh my gosh! Best ribs ever!! We all went together and were able to listen to some great blues music.

One of the live band members is 93 years old and comes out to play just to stay young at heart. And could he ever play! I was lucky enough to get to sit next to Santa Claus during this dinner.  Apparently he gets Dean to help with his long Christmas list each year.  I can’t wait to share with everyone some of these old fashioned toys this coming Spring. I hope you will try them and get down on the floor with your children and grand children and just have fun!

Before you think Behnke’s is turning into a toy store, I did find other treasures for your home and gardens, including many items made in the USA.  And yes, I did get new fairies for our fairy garden area which is under construction as it gets a fresh new look.  I hope, like me, you are looking forward to fun times at the nursery in 2017!

by Stephanie Fleming, Behnke’s Vice President

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Hallo Frau Stephanie,

    I got all excited reading about Opa’s blueberries. It reminded me of the years after the war when we were given an old bike and took turns riding into the woods. They were quite far and my brother and I complained, especially after collecting pine cones all day and logging them home for fire material. The best use was – picking blueberries. Mom and one of us walked, the other one rode the bike as far as we could see, then left the bike for the next walker and so on……..
    We found a well known patch, strung a little hanging container around our waste and started picking.
    It was fun and peaceful – in the first 30 minutes, but it too much much longer to fill the expected buckets to take home. We had our fill of “tasting”, the back began to hurt, the hands were blue up to the elbow and the “supplies” narrowed to smaller patches all around us. Mom probably hurt more than us children, but wouldn’t let. She surprised us with a break and “Fettschnitte” and kept going.
    However, at one of those (1947/1948) outings we quit very early. While she walked towards a new blue spot, she froze – in front of here slithered a “Kreuzotter”, a very poisonous snake. Super brave mom, not a word, no movement, no breathing………… the snake went its way. Shortly after, mom packed up the half empty containers and we tip-toed out of the woods.
    I still love Blueberries, alwas wonder why the store ones are so much bigger….
    Berry good wishes,

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