August 11, 2014

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The 11th Strawberry Shortcake Convention #BerryBestFriends #SSC @BerryBestBits @FoxHomeEnt @FHEInsiders #OHIO

The 11th annual Strawberry Shortcake Convention was held in Cleveland on August 1st and 2nd and as a Fox Home Entertainment Insider I was fortunate enough to be invited to attend! The Strawberry Shortcake Convention is the world's first Convention  dedicated to everything Strawberry Shortcake and her berry sweet world!  Each year Strawberry Shortcake collectors and fans come from all over  to meet others who either grew up with Strawberry Shortcake--no matter when that may have been: 1980s, 1990s,or from 2003-2014--or just discovered this berry sweet world.

I love Strawberry as a child and loved reminiscing about all the toys, bedding, lunch boxes, etc that I had as a child.  Heck when I came home, I took notice of all the Strawberry items I currently had besides toys for daughter. I had gift bags from prior birthdays (some were even classic Strawberry), Strawberry nail polish and nail decals, etc. When you start to look around, you take note of all the goodies you have! It is easy to see why Strawberry Shortcake is so very popular and had lasted over the years.  She is a wholesome, sweet girl who puts her friends and their needs in front of herself.  She always takes care of her responsibilities and has great worth ethic, but at the same time a loveable child.

Day 1 started with  a tour of American Greetings.  When we arrived we were greeted by Strawberry Shortcake herself! As we walked the halls of American Greetings their mission statement showed itself everywhere we went. We create happiness, laughter and love!  The folks who work at American Greetings really do love their jobs and creating happiness everyday.  Not only do the workers showcase their artwork outside their cubicles for everyone too see, but AG also allows workers to showcase their artwork in an in house gallery setting.
On our tour we learned that the cute little blondie in original American Greeting advertising was named Georgie! In 1906 American Greeting was started on a borrowed $50. The cards were sold out of a buggy and instantly sold out. The $50 was repaid and the rest is history!  

While on the tour we also met the amazing  Shuran Chen the lead Strawberry Shortcake designer.  She is too cute and too modest!  Not only her desk, but others around her were filled with Strawberry Shortcake items from years past and present!

After the tour we were treated to lunch by the great folks at American Greetings and then we learned some exciting things! There is an entire new toy line for fall and you can purchase them at Toys R Us.  One of the dolls is a signing Strawberry doll, that will have kids singing along.  There will also be a free action adventure app for your iPad/Kindle called Berry Rush.  It reminded me of Subway Surfers for girls!  It was too cute and should be released next month!

I also got to preview the new Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Best Friends that is coming to DVD on 9/16/14. Stay tuned as I will review it when it comes out on DVD! With each new season of Strawberry Shortcake, we are introduced to new story lines and characters. Season 1 introduced us to Strawberry and her friends, Season 2 was all about Cherry Jam and then in Season 3 we met Huck and his pets.  Well Season 4s announcement got a lot of excitement, this season we will be introduced to Sweet and Sour Grapes, Apple Dumpling and Tea Time Turtle.  Apple Dumpling is a little world traveler and a blogger!

Day 2 started off with a photo workshop by Jaye.  Jaye is an avid collector and has a room dedicated to his dolls!  Well he took the time to show us how you can take a simple white sheet, a doll and your camera and take some pretty cool photos of your dolls.  Jaye uses Dollar Store foam core at home to assist with his images and then prints them at home on photo paper!

Up next was Mia who taught us how to catalog our Strawberry Shortcake collection with Omeka. Omeka is a free online service that can help you organize and document your collection. Omeka reminded me of a personal online library of your collection. It was simple to use and if you have knowledge of tags, metadata, etc. then you will fly through it!

The convention also supports Alex's Lemonade Stand, so they had a Lemon Hair Salon Project contest as well as a creative exhibition for attendees to show their creative side.  Afterwards some items were raffled and auctioned off to support Alex's Lemonade Stand.  I loved learning how these talented folks created new dolls, new hair styles, costumes and more.  They did a show and tell session and let each person get up and have the limelight for a while.  I loved their passion and creativity!

Well the creativity did not stop there.  We were all handed t-shirts and taught how to make adorable upcycled bags!   You take a t-shirt and cute the neckline off the front and back (make sure it scoops on both sides).  Next cut off the sleeves.  At the bottom of the shirt, cut about three inch long strips, after the strips are cut, you will need to then knot them front to back.  If it seems a little loose at the bottom, just knot again to the next one over.  Once done, you have a super bag made from an old shirt.  Perfect to take to the farmers market and load up with goodies!

What is up next for Strawberry and the Gang?  Well next year Strawberry Shortcake is turning 35 years old!  Her birthplace is Cleveland, Ohio; the convention is held in the Cleveland area and Cleveland is the headquarters for American Greetings, so I  young next bet next year  it will be the year of the strawberry!   I also bet  the Strawberry Shortcake Convention will be bigger than ever to celebrate  her birthday!

Watch for  the new toys from Bridge Direct coming fall 2014. The new app and Strawberry Shortcake: Berry Best Friends DVD this September!

Stay connected with Strawberry Shortcake:
  • Like Strawberry Shortcake on Facebook 
  • Follow on Twitter @Berrybestbits 
  •  Soon will be the announcement for next years convention on the Strawberry Shortcake Convention website.

Disclosure: I am a Fox Home Entertainment Insider, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment hosted this media trip and covered my expenses.


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