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Blue Orange at Gen Con 2019

Blue Orange at Gen Con 2019

Gen-Con-2019With summer in full swing, this is our favorite time of the year! Gen Con, the convention where we release many of our best board games, is the place we love to connect with our fans. This year is no exception! We have six exciting new titles to share with you: Detective Club, Kingdomino Duel, Pappy Winchester, Dragon Market, Planet, and Slide Quest.

We are also organizing the first ever Kingdomino USA Championship at Gen Con and registrations is officially open! We will crown the USA Champion and send them to France all expenses paid for the World Championship next year.

2019 is a year rich in new games for Blue Orange, and Gen Con will be all the more exciting because of it!

Visit us, Booth # 1813!

 

SlideQuest_Pkg_Game_FlatSlide Quest

The kingdom is in total chaos! Work together to guide this brave rolling knight through 20 adventures filled with twists and traps. Players each hold on to a lever and guide the moving platform in all directions, sliding the knight to follow the right paths while beating obstacles.

As challenges become more difficult, hold on to your lives to make it to the highest level and win!

Slide Quest turned a video game concept into a board game where dexterity and cooperation are keys to success.

 

PLANET_gif_160X600-V-2Planet

2019 Mensa Select® winner!

A world is taking shape in the palm of your hands. Take on the role of super beings and compete to create perfect worlds with the ideal conditions for wildlife to flourish. In this very unique game, each player’s board is a 12-sided 3-dimensional planet core. Throughout 12 turns, select landscape tiles representing oceans, deserts, mountains or frozen lands, and arrange them on your planet to create the best ecosystems. Win Animal Cards while fulfilling your own ‘’Natural Habitat’’ objective and create the most populated planet in the universe!

Several events are planned throughout Gen Con to learn how to play the game and participate to tournaments. Register fast, some events are already sold out:

https://www.gencon.com/event_finder?search=blue+orangeus

 

DETECTIVE-CLUB_300X250Detective Club

Detective Club is a social deduction party game featuring beautiful, surreal artwork and intriguing player interactions!  Each round, one player secretly writes a word in all-but- one of the other players’ notebooks. The player who does not know the word is the  Conspirator this round. All players then take turns playing cards they feel best  represent the word. When the word is revealed at the end of the round, each player  explains why their cards make sense with the word. The player who didn’t know the  word will have to quickly come up with an explication in order to not be detected!

Learn how to play Detective Club in the Event Hall on Thursday afternoon or Friday morning:

https://www.gencon.com/event_finder?search=blue+orange

 

KING-DOMINO-DUEL_300X250(1)Kingdomino Duel

Roll the dice, choose the ones you want, and put them together in pairs to create your dominoes. Domino by domino, fill in your map while entrusting the territories of your kingdom to loyal dignitaries. Gather favors from wizards in order to cast powerful spells which will allow you to rule without having to share.  Kingdomino Duel is a completely independent game which preserves the essence of the acclaimed original Kingdomino. In this game, instead of adding dominoes to your kingdom, you will choose two dice to combine into a single “domino” which must then be drawn into your kingdom.

 

PAPPY-WINCHESTER_300X250Pappy Winchester

Pappy Winchester has kicked the bucket! Poor thing, he was the king of swindlers and  everyone knows he was filthy rich! His final wish was that his descendants would share his fortune and the plots of his ranch,  with the richest becoming the new head of the family. After all, for him the most important  thing was that his money stayed in the family! Pappy thought of everything and left an outline of his belongings. You and the other heirs  are now assembled around this map to share out Pappy’s possessions.

 

DragonMarket DosBoiteDragon Market

The royal wedding at Dragon’s Bay is set to commence in a few days time, so you have sent your eldest heir on a quest to gather gifts from the Dragon Market. This will be quite a fun adventure: running and jumping from boat to boat, collecting all the best treasures out from under the other families’ grasp!

In Dragon Market, players move river boats around the board in order to gather up the items they wish to present to the princess. On your turn, you will roll 2 dice and then make a number of moves equal to the dice result. Your options for moving are to either move your heir token, collecting any items you pass or to move a boat in straight line, or to rotate a boat 180 degrees. The first player to collect their items and return back to the start is the winner.

Learn how to play Dragon Market in the Event Hall on Sunday at 11am, 12pm or 1pm:

https://www.gencon.com/event_finder?search=dragon+market

Gen Con 2018 may be over…

Gen Con 2018 may be over…

but the convention will have a long-lasting effect on all of us, between the great memories, the new friendships and contacts, the games discoveries, and so much more. In Indianapolis this year, we saw the early success of our three new releases: Scarabya, Kingdomino Expansion Age of Giants, and Blue Lagoon.

Arstechnica.com      Image from Zimmerman’s article on Sunday, August 7th, 2018

The energy and enthusiasm of fans and employees alike was overwhelming throughout the four days the convention took place. We were always busy at our 400 sq. ft. booth and so were the six tables in the Event Hall where almost 900 players registered to play and joined in the fun.

                        

Images by Be Bold Games at Gen Con in August 2018

We could not be more excited about how well fans received the new games, and this was made apparent when we saw the Board Game Geek GeekBuzz list on Sunday, at the end of the convention. Scarabya was in first place, followed by Blue Lagoon, and then Age of Giants.

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Boardgamegeek.com GeekBuzz list screenshot on Sunday, August 5th, 2018

Scarabya is a tile-laying puzzle game designed by Bruno Cathala and Ludovic Maublanc.

The game, which includes unique gameplay and intricate components, is played by positioning pentomino tiles on individual boards to create excavation zones of 1 to 4 squares that contain scarabs. The scarabs are then worth the size of the zone they are in.

Age of Giants, designed by Bruno Cathala, was an expected hit following the fame of Kingdomino, Spiels des Jahres winner in 2017. The expansion, to be played with Kingdomino or Queendomino, adds new challenges, brings a new level of player interaction, and includes a domino dispenser tower. It also allows for a fifth player to join.

Blue Lagoon, designed by Reiner Knizia, requires smart placement and anticipation to win. The area control and set collection game is won through the accumulation of points by collecting resources and settling on the islands.

A special surprise, Bruno Cathala came to the Blue Orange booth each day to meet fans and promote his games. We, along with fans, loved having him there and getting to play his games with him! What a memorable experience to have the game designer sign your copy.

Bruno signing

Image by Be Bold Games at Gen Con in August 2018

Along with the release of the new games came exclusive collectible pins to match! If you were one of the lucky first 250 to purchase any of the new games, you received a pin to go with it!

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Twitter.com     Gameosity tweet screenshot on Friday, July 27th, 2018

With the closing of Gen Con 2018, we are already looking forward to next year and all it will bring. Thank you immensely to everyone who came out to support us! We could not ask for better fans, and we do all we can to keep you happy and loving our games! Stay tuned in for updates on games and other exclusives we have! Special thank you to Be Bold Games, Ars Technica, and Gameosity for the awesome pictures!

 

Blue Lagoon, Age of Giants, and Scarabya are all available in stores and online.

Teacher Store in San Angelo, Texas is May’s Store of the Month!

Teacher Store in San Angelo, Texas is May’s Store of the Month!

Nestled in the charming city of San Angelo sits the one of a kind, Teacher Store. Offering educational resources, toys, games and a rich history, this store’s many specialties is why Blue Orange Games is so happy to make them May Store of the Month. Our sale representative, Louis had a blast visiting Teacher Store and loved the staffs enthusiasm and uniqueness.unnamed (3)

Opened 33 years ago by former teachers, Manuel and Estella Santos, Teacher Store first function was teachers supplies and educations resources. Now run by their son Dominic, the store is filled with so much more, from those educational aids to toys and games. Although the store has a formal name of Angelo School & Teacher Supplies, the community collectively renamed the shop Teacher Store around 25 years ago! Don’t be fooled by the name though, Teacher Store is a treat for anyone who enters their doors. From grandparents, parents, kids, and even pen-fanatics looking for stationary accessories, this store has a little something for everyone!unnamed (1)

While both Manual and Estella Santos have retired and move slightly away from the store, they always have the store on their mind. Although it was tough for the two entrepreneurs to walk away from their “baby” which is Teacher Store they left it in the very capable hands of their son, Dominic Santos, who I had the pleasure of interviewing. Dominic let us know that one of the games that he loves to bring home to the Santo’s family is Yamslam since they can enjoy playing together.c9eb3b58e3274579c13dfec2d82908d2-Yamslam-MainPic-364x384

With over 33 years in the business I had to know what the secret to Teacher Store’s success was. Dominic stated that it was all about the customers and providing them with the best service they can. He exclaimed that “We will do absolutely anything for our customers, obviously we’re always looking for the best products, and that’s where Blue Orange comes in!” One of his favorite aspects of Blue Orange Games is the impeccable quality of each product. Offering such amazing products at Teacher Store means it’s hard to go wrong when picking out a new family favorite or gift. To celebrate their customers Teacher Store even hosts the occasional Game Day, where almost every game in the store is set out to play. While this day is a blast for customers, it’s also cherished by the employees since they get the chance to play games all day at their favorite stations.

GobbletGobbers_Pack_LowResKingdomino_Pkg_FlatAs far as Blue Orange Games, Dominic’s must-have classic is Gobblet Gobbler. He loves how even though it’s a simple game the strategy component allows it to appeal to all ages. I was excited to hear that while Battlesheep has moved down to a secondary position in his love of Blue Orange Game, the top spot now belongs to Kingdomino. This 2017 Spiel de Jahre’s winner, is the perfect game to play with customers, after one try everyone wants to play again!

With Teacher Store finding home within a 112-year-old building, the place is filled with memories and stories galore. Dominic recounted the time a four-year-old had gotten separated from his mom within the store. While the entire store searched up, dowunnamed (2)n and around the block for the young boy, he had tucked himself under a display and thus created a store wide game of hide-n-seek! In a surprise ending to our interview, Dominic also let me know that Teacher Store is rumored to be haunted.  Numerous employees have claims of items getting moved around and other spooky occurrences such as creaking sounds throughout the night. Dominic assured me though that it’s all in playful fun and not a frightening presence whatsoever.

We want to thank Teacher Store for offering such amazing customer service and passion for Blue Orange products. This family owned Teacher Store is one of a kind, in more than a few ways! We are so lucky to call Teacher Store our May Store of the Month, and we encourage everyone to check out their website HERE or their shop at 310 N. Chardbourne St. San Angelo, TX 76903.

Congratulations!

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Miss the Magic of Browsing for Toys as a Kid? Shop Small to Satisfy Your Nostalgia

Miss the Magic of Browsing for Toys as a Kid? Shop Small to Satisfy Your Nostalgia

Recently, Toys R Us announced it will be closing almost 800 retail stores across the country, a move that came months after the company filed for bankruptcy in September. In the wake of the announcement, Americans all over have expressed how upset they are about losing what many view as a major childhood rite of passage: perusing the aisles at your local Toys R Us in search of the perfect toy. In the hundreds of published reports that have covered the retailer’s decision, consumers are quoted as being sad the chain is closing its doors. Many of them express the same sentiment, stating they’re afraid that the children of today and the future are not going to have the same “magical” experiences if Toys R Us isn’t around.

But what if we told you the magic isn’t gone?

We promise it’s still here. In fact, it might even be down the street, or around the corner, or even a quick car ride away. You might have worked there as a teenager, or stopped in on a Wednesday afternoon after middle school got out, or even bought a last-minute birthday gift there before Carrie’s 8th birthday party that your mom totally forgot was that day.

Figure it out yet? It’s your local neighborhood specialty toy store.

Castle Toys and Games in Beaver, PA. Check out all those Blue Orange games!
Castle Toys and Games in Beaver, PA. Check out all those Blue Orange games!
Maybe it’s next to the ice cream parlor, or across the street from the local library, or two doors down from your favorite donut shop- but its location doesn’t matter. What matters is that if you’re looking for that magical experience, this is the place to go. It also doesn’t matter if your child or niece or nephew needs a new gift or not, because these small local toy stores are about way more than just a purchase, they are about an experience.  They feature carefully selected toys and games, and have well-trained staff who are often “experts” in most of the products in stock. Quite often you’ll find that a short trip to the store will turn into a one-on-one experience that is full of suggestions and demonstrations, all in the name of finding you the perfect toy or game to gift or take home.

 

These stores are the kind of places that hold weekly game nights, organize arts and craft sessions, and host birthday parties, building community and giving people a place to gather and bond. Some even sell books and hold reading sessions, giving eager readers a place to pick out their next favorite. You might be surprised at the activities and initiatives these little stores plan and participate in, so stop in and stay awhile to learn about all the cool stuff they do and offer.

Staff and customers at Dilly Dally Rogers in Arkansas playing Doodle Quest at an event.
Staff and customers at Dilly Dally Rogers in Arkansas playing Doodle Quest at an event.

Take a child there, and we promise their eyes will light up. Small stores are big on demos and “try before you buy” is a major part of their ethos. During a visit, dice can be rolled, blocks can be built, and plushies can be touched- all in the name of fun. Five minutes in a small toy store and it’s extremely likely that your Toys R Us nostalgia will be pushed to the side, making way for new memories and newfound nostalgia. We told you the magic isn’t gone!

Small  toy stores are the original sources of that magic, and visiting them means you are participating in a tradition that spans decades and decades of shopping at specialty mom ‘n pop shops- what’s more magical than that?! We promise that feeling of walking down the aisles, looking at toys, and then picking a special stand-out is still there, because it’s always been there and it isn’t going away anytime soon.

Read me a story_Anacortes_WA
Blue Orange sales team member Xavier visiting Read Me a Story in Anacortes, WA.

 

Blue Orange sales team member Francois at Be Beep A Toy Shop in Columbia, SC.
Blue Orange sales team member Francois at Be Beep A Toy Shop in Columbia, SC.

 

Blue Orange sales team member Bart at Tiddlywinks in Orange, CA.
Blue Orange sales team member Bart at Tiddlywinks in Orange, CA.

 

We at Blue Orange are major supporters of all our specialty retailers, and we hope you are too! If you’re looking for a toy and game store in your area that sells Blue Orange Games, make sure to check out our handy dandy store locator– it features shops full of quality products that are staffed with people who are awaiting the chance to give you an amazing experience. We won’t be mad if you stop in and don’t buy one of our games- just make sure to say hi from Blue Orange Games!

Launch Store Locator

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Legacy Toys in Minnesota and North Dakota is March’s Store of the Month!

Legacy Toys in Minnesota and North Dakota is March’s Store of the Month!

LegacyToys_Rectangle_Vintage_PostcardWe are so excited to have Legacy Toys as our March Store(s) of the Month. With three locations around Minnesota and North Dakota, these shops are definitely leaving a huge legacy! The Blue Orange team got the chance to visit the Duluth location and loved how knowledgeable the staff was, as well as the passion they had for our games. In fact, after getting the chance to play the 2017 Spiel De Jahres winner, Kingdomino, with our Blue Orange interns, it quickly became a staff favorite. In addition to all the fun we had while visiting, this enthusiasm for Blue Orange Games is why we are so happy to reward Legacy Toys our Store of the Month award!

Brad and his wife opened their first store in 2012, wanting to bring fun to kids and families with their unique ideas. The first Legacy Toys was in Ely, Minnesota and was filled to the brim with toys, games, and plush figures that were perfect for igniting imagination. Brad and his wife have three daughters, so they wanted to help families like theirs appreciate quality time together without all the distractions of electronics. At Legacy Games, it’s always encouraged to think creatively, explore, and of course- PLAY!

The game section at their flagship store in Ely, MN. (photo credit: Legacy Toys website)
The game section at their flagship store in Ely, MN. Check out those Blue Orange games on the left! (photo credit: Legacy Toys website)

For the fantastic staff at Legacy Toys, playing games is taken very seriously, and Brad’s team always goes above and beyond as game experts. This is part of the Legacy Toys experience- customers always return because they know just how knowledgeable the staff is. Brad even started a rewards program just for his staff, so that when they can successfully teach someone how to play a new game they are rewarded points. With access to over 400+ games in the Legacy Toys demo library, everyone is free to bring games home and encouraged to pick out a quarterly favorite to show off to the customers. It’s clear that there’s no lack of passion from the staff, owner, or customers at Legacy Toys.

The team at Legacy Toys, Duluth receiving the Store of the Month award.

With  three stores already open in the area, Legacy Toys has become a sought after adventure for many because of its remarkable decor. The third store in Fargo just opened in November, and it features a life-sized bison that entices locals and tourists alike. Additionally, every Legacy Toys is home to a giant, robot dinosaur- each has a distinct species to greet you inside! At the Ely store, you’ll be sure to find fun with their 500-gallon saltwater aquarium that’s filled with all the mysteries of the sea. Last, but surely not least, is the Duluth store. It not only has a full castle storefront entrance, so you can arrive like royalty, but it also has a rain forest set up with twenty-five foot palm trees and LED clouds to stimulate storms. At this location, kids love to ride the Plasma Car around the store or even sneak into the candy section for a sweet treat. If you can visit all three Legacy Toys, or even just one, you’re sure to have an experience like no other!

The dinosaur at Legacy Toys, Duluth! (Photo: Duluth News Tribune)
The dinosaur at Legacy Toys, Duluth! (Photo: Duluth News Tribune)

All the stores have events, such as bi-weekly game nights, where you can expect more than 100 people to stop by and play a few rounds with friends, both old and new. One of the crowd favorites is Dr. Eureka, since it’s so easy to join in on a game with kids of any age. This event is also an amazing opportunity to try before you buy and get familiar with all the new Blue Orange, like Pool Party or Mindo.  Make sure to check out the Legacy Toy store website to see when the store closest to you is having an event!

We want to thank the Legacy Toys team for their enthusiasm for Blue Orange games, and for letting their passion for fun create magic in every store. To learn more about Legacy Toys, visit their website or stop by of their three locations:

1. Legacy Toys – Duluth

1600 Miller Trunk Hwy

Duluth, MN 55811

(218) 729-2627

2. Legacy Toys – Fargo

3902 13th Ave S.

Fargo, ND 58103

(701) 205-0085

3. Legacy Toys – Ely

5 N. Central Ave.

Ely, MN 55731

(218) 249-0263

Congratulations again to Legacy Toys!

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Written by: Whitney Green

Congratulations to Sage Explorers in Lake Forest, IL for Winning December’s Store of the Month

Congratulations to Sage Explorers in Lake Forest, IL for Winning December’s Store of the Month

IMG_0001If you’re ever in the neighborhood of Lake Forest, Illinois be sure to make a stop at Sage Explorers toy shop. While its doors only just opened in September, this place is well on its way to becoming a town staple. With its quick acceleration to the top and a focus on educational learning, Sage Explorers is more than deserving of our December Store of the Month award.

Lake Forest has been a town without a toy and game store for many years, and Sage Explorers has brought the fun back into the community. With only a few months under their belts, the people of Lake Forest have quickly embraced this shop and all it has to offer. Those seeking a new game or toy no longer have to journey far to satisfy their wishes and as a result, you can expect to find the store busy with kids stopping by after school for a little fun, or grandparents picking up a treat for their grand kids. Being able to cater to such a diverse range of people is just what makes Sage Explorers so special!

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Demonstration tables throughout the store are one of the keys to their success!

While Sage Explorers offers toys and games that will keep the kids entertained for hours, they have so much more. The owner, Allison, has been a educator for the last 12 years, so you can be assured that she knows a thing or two about educational fun. She knows that games can help develop a young mind and that building strategic skills is something that parents, educators, and kids should all get excited about. As a store that values the learning process, many teachers within the community have found Sage Explorers to be a great resource for classroom materials. They also have tutoring available for children, which provides them with another chance to make a difference in their community.   Allison declared that one of her favorite educational games to recommend is the Super Genius line, since it’s so easy to integrate within any curriculum and keep students engaged.With everything you need to promote education, there is no question why the store has seen such great success.

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Sage Explorers accepting the Store of the Month award.

Of course we had to ask which Blue Orange game is Allison’s personal favorite. She’s a big fan of Flash, since it’s such a great way to get kids focuses on arithmetic while nurturing their motor skills. On the other hand, she’s noticed that customers go crazy for Go Go Gelato. It’s easy game play and flexibility to adjust to any age or skill level make it a favorite with her customers!

When asked what makes a great game, Allison stated that it’s all about how easy it is to teach. Customers, from young kids to grandparents, love a game that has simple rules and is quick for players to pick up on. At Sage Explorers, one of the secrets to their success is always keeping a great selection of easy to learn games out for demonstration. Having four display tables all packed with games enables everyone that strolls by to play a quick round as they shop. This has proven effective as letting their customers play a Blue Orange classic, Gobblet Gobblers, has been an easy way to keep the game flying off the shelves.

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Customers playing Gobblet Gobblers at a demo table in the store.

If you’re ever in Lake Forest, Sage Explorers is definitely worth the visit. From educators to parents to kids, everyone is bound to have a fun time! They’re located at 647 N. Bank Ln., and will soon be available online as well.

Congratulations!

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Written by: Whitney Green

Congratulations to Shenanigans in Charlottesville, VA for Winning September’s Store of the Month

Congratulations to Shenanigans in Charlottesville, VA for Winning September’s Store of the Month

blueAs if it’s name wasn’t clear enough, Shenanigans is all about the funny business. Our sales representative, Bastien, recommended Shenanigans for their character! From being family owned, to having the friendliest staff, and creating a store with a little bit of everything available, there’s clearly something special about this shop! Although its filled to the brim with entertainment, Shenanigans also has the rich history to match.

Shop owner, Kai, moved from Florida to Charlottesville in the 70’s with her 4 week old son. Working as a copy writer there was never a shortage of tasks that she could lend her creative wizardry to, and add some flare. Just like mom, her son was a little go-getter. As a fast learner, he was walking by 9 months and out growing his old toys and games quicker than most. This left Kai having to travel far just to get those toys and games that were developmentally challenging and gender neutral. With other mothers in the area doing the same, it was clear the Charlottesville needed a toy store where the community could find that big city quality, and diversity, without traveling hours north. It was during these pilgrimages in search of fun that Kai saw a future for herself and family. Since she had also been looking for work with a young child, she was able to design a job with built in childcare that was just right for her. Thus Shenanigans was born!

 store 4With it’s door open for over 40 years, this shop knows fun like no other! In 1974 Shenanigans first welcomed those who sought out fun engaging toys and games without the journey. Fast forward to today where they still provide just that. Even though they aren’t the only toy store in the neighborhood, Shenanigans still reigns supreme! Kai states, “what sets them apart is their product selections”. With such a cute, little store, every item within those four walls is curated by their staff with maximum fun in mind. Knowing what makes customers squeal in delight is something that keeps the neighborhood coming back. Tailoring their selection so that games are completely original and never stale is exactly what puts Shenanigans at the top of the list!

Dr Eureka BoxAs far a Blue Orange Games, Kai would have to name Dr. Eureka as one of her favorites. Going into detail, Kai says our games have such bright and nice art and there’s always a great eye-catching factor.  But what truly lies beneath the cover is Blue Orange’s dedication to inspiring STEM and core developmental skills that don’t go unnoticed to parents. Kai motto is that “if it’s boring, it’s not educational, since they’re not going to play it”. This blunt but true statement by Kai really resonates with our product line.

Kai elaborated that the kids don’t need to think about the skills they’re gaining, but rather the fun should conceal it. When playing with building blocks, a child doesn’t necessarily know he or she is developing a basis of engineering, nor do they understand they are growing familiarity with STEM when they play a game like Dr. Microbe. Blue Orange has the same values; learning should be fun, and if kids already want to play the games then half the work is already done. Shenanigans’ philosophy is to leave the term educational out by labeling their games and toys as fun! As a type of parental shenanigans, or a method of mischievousness, kids are left having uninhibited fun without knowing that their developing better motor and strategic, critical thinking skills!store 1

When considering their success, Shenanigans is no stranger to being a community staple. Kai thanks her neighborhood for being the perfect location, as it is a region with few chain stores and many unique shops that are supported by their community. Not to mention being between two hubs of the city, Shenanigans is accessible for all, either for a quick stop in for the grand kids, or an afternoon spent exploring with the kids. Make sure to grab a copy of the original Shenanigans Coupon Book, with monthly deals such as Board Game Discount November coming up, it’s sure to be a good time! 

Working with Shenanigans has been a pleasure and we proudly award them September’s Store of the Month. As a important part of Charlottesville , Shenanigans is a place where you can find something for everyone, from the helpful staff to the perfect game. Shenanigans is always reachable via their website here or at 601 West Main Street, Charlottesville, VA.

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