A Destination For Popular Pop It Toys And More, Fidget Tree To Open In Lower Burrell

While many physical stores are giving way to online retail, not everyone is following the trend. Kylee Hornack-Kohler and his mother, Denise Hornack, are rocking the story with their new store, Fidget Tree, which opens in Lower Burrell on Wednesday.

They specialize in “wiggle” and Pop It devices – fun, anti-anxiety, educational and, for some, spiritual sensory and tactile toys.

Hornack-Kohler and his mother open Fidget Tree in the former Brooks Gardens and Floral Designs at 2824 Leechburg Road, opposite The Mat Factory wrestling club. In addition to restless toys, there are specialty gift items for adults, such as soy candles, lanterns, birdbaths, vases, and more.

The Wednesday grand opening from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. will offer discounts, coloring activities and holiday treats to visitors throughout the week. Santa will be making an appearance in stores on November 27-28.

Hornack-Kohler has been testing the market since the summer with a vendor stand that has attracted a growing legion of fans. She has set up shop at Mogie’s Irish Pub and Forza Motorcars in Lower Burrell, as well as festivals throughout the region.

“Fidgets are generally known for children with the autism spectrum and ADHD,” Hornack-Kohler said. “But all the kids started collecting them and trading them like baseball cards. This is very fun. It was a great thing that I saw coming. I don’t have to market it. It markets itself. These things are viral.

A recent New York Times article, “How the Pop It! Invaded Your Home, “a toy industry executive quoted as saying that toys” seem to be taking everyone by storm this year, “with their” potential anxiety relief aspects “making them” a hit. in the era of the pandemic “.

Fidgets and Pop It toys come in bright colors and come in all shapes and sizes, from green plastic frogs sticking out their tongues when squeezed to the giant 2 foot long Santa Pop Its with little silicone buttons that you push in. inside and outside. Pop It devices give a similar but longer lasting sensation to bursting bubble wrap.

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A Fidget Tree offer, a Pop It toy in the shape of a computer keyboard can be used as a learning tool.

Products need to be seen and touched to feel them, rather than just being viewed on an Amazon page.

Online shopping desensitizes the shopping experience and families don’t shop together, Hornack-Kohler noted.

“I believe small businesses are going to make a comeback,” she said. “Obviously, there is a need to shop, even for children. We have to think about reinventing the activity wheel for children.

Hornack-Kohler has seen kids run from their parents’ car to its hectic cabin: “They’re so excited, and it’s a positive shopping experience for the whole family.

Fidget Tree products include a variety of over 200 Fidget and Pop It toys. There are fidgets like stretchy unicorn monkey noodles, LED light spinners, mood emojis, and more. The variety of Pop It items seems endless: strawberries, butterflies, rabbits, avocados, purses, backpacks, key chains, spinning bracelets, dice games, puzzles and more.

The Fidget Tree has sold Prayer Pop Its – crosses with five Pop Its for counting prayers – to local churches, as well as a range of Pop Its for retirement homes, local school districts and other places.

The Pop Its can be used to encourage math skills such as addition and subtraction. A Pop It keyboard helps kids practice spelling.

There are specialties for adults, such as the latest versions of the Rubik’s Cube pyramid and other atypical shapes. Hornack-Kohler said she sells to everyone. “High school girls are given an inverted plush octopus that alternates expressions when it is turned over. They want them and they collect them.

Hornack-Kohler, 40, has taken daughter Monroe shopping for the past two years.

“We were driving 45 minutes to reach a store in Mount Lebanon that sold fidgets,” she said. “She was so happy. I was excited to see her happy. We had a lot of fun shopping together.

Graduated from Burrell in 1999 and graduated from Penn State in 2003, Hornack-Kohler has two decades of sales and marketing experience.

Knowing the popularity of toys, combined with her love of Lower Burrell, she decided to open her doors in the city.

“There really isn’t a place to shop for kids in Lower Burrell,” she said. “You can go to department stores, but they don’t have these specialty products. “

It is aimed at children: some of the display tables are intentionally set up low to the ground so that young buyers can reach them.

The store plans to expand its inventory in the coming months. Special events will be offered, as well as space for birthdays and other events.

The Fidget Tree will be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday. The store can be reached at 724-393-6978 and on Facebook.

Mary Ann Thomas is a writer for Tribune-Review. You can contact Mary at 724-226-4691, mthomas@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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