Article Top Ad
Reading Time: 2 minutes


Fat Brain Toys, a family-owned toy manufacturer based in Elkhorn, Nebraska, has announced the winner of the 2021 Kidventor Challenge. The Kidventor Challenge invited children ages six to thirteen to submit toy or game ideas for a chance to have their concept manufactured and sold worldwide.

Unlike other competitions, winning the Kidventor Challenge does not end with the award. For past winners, it has brought continued commercial success AND cash winnings. The 2017 winner, Alexander Xiong, has sold over 100,000 units with his Door Pong since its launch in 2018 and has even been featured on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The Buggy Light by 2018 winner Emma Turner has shown promising results and is already sold out for the 2021 Christmas season. In addition, Fat Brain Toys is excited about the upcoming launch of the Sew Fast game, invented by 2020 winner Tristan Donaldson, who was also recently named TAGIE Young Innovator of the Year.

The winner of this year’s Kidventor Challenge is 7-year-old Anika for her invention Octo-buddy. Octo-buddy is a toy octopus that attaches to a high chair or stroller and uses its eight tentacles to hold bottles and toys so parents do not have to constantly pick things up off the floor.

“Contests are nice, but what we try to reinforce with Kidventor is that good ideas can turn into amazing realities,” explained Mark Carson, the Co-Founder of Fat Brain Toys. “Seeing several ‘Kidventions’ turns into commercial success has been one of the true joys of my career.”

As the grand prize winner, Anika will receive a $2,500 scholarship, a license agreement with ongoing royalties, $500 worth of toys from Fat Brain Toys, and round-trip airfare and hotel for two to the 2022 American International Toy Fair in New York City, where her invention will be showcased to thousands of buyers from around the world.

This year’s judges included Mindy Thomas, co-host of the NPR podcast, Wow In The World, Claire Green, president of the Parent’s Choice Foundation, and Karen Carson and Mark Carson, co-founders of Fat Brain Toys. Each of them has a unique and experienced understanding of what makes a great toy and what is most fun and beneficial to children.

2021 marks the fifth consecutive Kidventor Challenge, a tradition Fat Brain Toys would like to continue for many years to come. Young inventors who have a toy or game idea they think could win can enter again in the spring of 2022.