Neighborhood of Make-Believe Playset

Those of us who dig through boxes at garage sales and flea markets are always in search of that one item. You know what I'm talking about. It's usually something that's either impossible to find or is out there but only at a cost much more than any normal person would be willing to pay.

Some of you who know me here on the internet through my other blog are aware of my fascination with the work of Fred Rogers. For me, that "one item" is the 1977 Neighborhood of Make-Believe playset made by Ideal.

In the late 70's, Ideal also put out a Musical Trolley and three hand puppets featuring characters from the show. For the most part, those items are pretty easy to come up with. But not the NOM playset.

For years I have been searching high and low for any sign that this playset even existed. Having come up with two images of this set and nothing more, I was beginning to wonder if the playset was something that was planned but never produced. But last week that all changed.

Thanks to eBay, I was able to come up with not one, but three pieces from this orginal set. So it's out there, folks, and I have a renewed faith that someday I will come across a complete set.

King Friday and Daniel Tiger are in great condition while Prince Tuesday is missing a little paint on his arm and Henrietta Pussycat looks as those she's had her face run through a wringer (on a side note, the Daniel Tiger figure was an accessory to the Musical Trolley and was not a part of the NOM playset). While a few of the pieces I got are a little beat up, I couldn't be happier with them.

Most people would wonder why a guy in his 30's is so excited about these old toys, but some of you reading this certainly understand. You've got something you're looking for, too.


Guy Hutchinson said...

Indeed! The most recent thing I wanted (and bought) was this:
I had wanted one when they were new, but my parents thought it was a waste of money (it was $75 I think.)

So now I paid much much more for a used one.

Guy Hutchinson said...

Oh, and on a similar subject...

a few years ago we were going through some childhood photos of my wife's family.

In one of the pictures you could see the stack of gifts she got that year (all of them were long gone.)

So, I hunted on eBay and re-purchased most of them and gave them to her that year with a blowup of the photo.

The gifts included a Smurf Spin Around game, Go to the Head of the Class and a Punky Brewster doll. It was lots of fun to search for and ended up being a very cool gift (and not that expensive, either.)

TL said...

Guy -- I'm not sure which is more awesome -- your gift to your wife or the fact that Chairry is currently in your house!

Unknown said...

I realise this post is two years old but I came across it because *I* was looking for the 1977 playset. I did just find Queen Sara and Henrietta Pussycat figures on Ebay! Glad to see I'm not the only guy in his 30s with this obsession. My cover story is I have nieces and nephews who are toddlers...

TL said...

Jack -- check out my other site then --