Teaching Toys, Too co-owner Valla Wagner takes a recent spin
through her new Uptown Gig Harbor toy store.
GIG HARBOR — A new
toy store just opened in Uptown Gig Harbor.
And since April 30, Teaching Toys, Too has been packing in savvy shoppers
One step inside the large, well-lit store, and you’ll know you’re in a
Friendly-looking stuffed animals eye customers from the second they enter the
corner shop. Books and games, and racks of colorful, neatly-stacked toys seem to
Co-owner Valla Wagner said there’s nothing quite like her customer-friendly
toy biz anywhere around — except that is — the Tacoma store, where she and
Melissa Tennille have been doing business for years.
Due in part by the popular demand from their commuting Gig Harbor customers,
the two women opened their Gig Harbor store to help a growing community by
offering an inventory of diverse, interactive toys.
Wagner said the combination of being an independent venture, and having a
heart for children, are the keys to her Main Street store’s sudden
She said that unlike the bigger stores, like Toys R Us and Target, her place
is more of a ma-and-pa kind of neighborhood store.
Teaching Toys, Too offers the classic toys like yo-yos, Frisbees, jump ropes,
building blocks and others that have stood the test of time. But what makes this
store different are the toys that help children think about their world, and
help them grow into well-rounded adults, Wagner said.
She feels that kids are hardwired to learn stuff, and she believes that the
simple choice of choosing particular toys with learning value is very
“When people walk in with any age child, or a child with any particular
interest or any ability, we’ll be able to say that we have the right toy for
“We don’t want to just sell them something. We’d rather have them leave with
nothing than sell them something that doesn’t match a child,” Wagner said
Everything in the store is hand-selected by the owners, and products range in
price from $1 to around $100.
The store sells plenty of board games, even the models that change and evolve
as kids grow. There’s also stuff for kids that come in with just a pocket full
of change, and they boast an array of fun family-based games.
Another standout for Teaching Toys, Too is that it is fast-becoming a local
resource for teachers and therapists that may need something specific to aid as
a learning tool.
“There’s a lot of good schools, teachers, parents, and grandparents, that
really care about the kids in their lives out here.
“We believe that we’ve put together a group of choices that will serve this
community. It’s our hope that they’ll come out and meet us, and take a look at
everything that’s different than anything they’ve seen before,” Wager added.
For information, call (253) 514-6113.