Great Ohio Toy Show returns to Xenia this weekend

The Great Ohio Toy Show, one of the biggest toy shows in the Midwest, returns this weekend at the Greene County Fairgrounds, an event that is expected to draw between 6,000 and 10,000 people to Xenia.

The event showcases vintage toys from the 1960s through the early ‘90s, as well as toys from World War II, action figures, dolls, and graded toys and comics. The event also offers modern toys that aren’t easily available in stores, as well as video games and movies. It’s estimated some dealers spend between $30,000 and $50,000 there, said Rob Eldridge, owner of Route 68 Vintage Toys and Collectibles.

“I’m proud and blessed to say we were able to do that and we have an event like this in Xenia and in Ohio,” he said.

The show was the only one of its kind to continue in both 2020 and 2021. Working closely with Greene County Public Health, Eldridge was able to continue the show through the pandemic with wide aisles, social distancing requirements and required masks.

The first show at the fairgrounds averaged around 150 tables of vendors showing both vintage and new toys. The “COVID show,” as it’s called, rescheduled from March to May, drew over 400 tables’ worth of vendors. Spring and Fall shows in 2021 drew six thousand and five thousand people to Greene County respectively. The 2022 show is expected to have 700 tables of vendors, and is expected to draw between six and ten thousand people to the Fairgrounds, both nationally and internationally.

“You’ve got so many horrible things happening in the world. This is one day you can come with your family, remember your past, remember things that make you happy, and it’s right here in Greene County,” Eldridge said.

The toy show also runs fundraisers for the Xenia High School band boosters, and superhero and G.I. Joe reenacting groups will be raising money for K9s for Warriors, which provides service dogs to veterans.

“It’s a walk down memory lane and an opportunity for parents to share their love of toys and good family memories with their children, and create something new for families to share together,” Eldridge said. “It’s something they can engage in and put their hands on, not a phone or computer screen. It’s bringing back the age of play.

Located at 120 Fairground Road in Xenia, the event is $5 for adults, and free for children 12 and under. Parking is free, and food trucks will be available.

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