When we opened up the box this month and I saw this toy aimed at tiddlers from 9 months old, I spent a while trying to think of any babies that we knew who would like it. I failed because, just like The Boy, they've grown up and are now all two years plus. In the end, I decided to get it out of the box and let him try it out.
This is where the first negative of this toy comes into effect. But let me reassure you, there are only two; one is over the minute you get it out the box, the other isn't that big an issue.
Getting the Elefun Poppin' Park out of the box is easier said than done. I wouldn't normally comment on something so mundane, but I think you need to know this or you are going to lose valuable time on Christmas (or a birthday) morning, getting irritated and having a baby who will quite possibly cry with desperation to play with it. There is a ridiculous amount of ties and sellotape holding the Elefun into the even more ridiculous amount of carboard. It took a full fifteen minutes to just get it out of the box. Then there was the small amount of assembly; click the steps on the base on (easy enough) and push the ears into place. Ha! Both Mr. TheBoyandMe and I struggled with this, but eventually (just before I was going to throw it out of the window in exasperation) it decided to relent and allow us.
And so to the toy. It's simple enough, but very effective. There are five plastic balls which you put into the Elefun's solid ear. Once you press the red button on his 'hand' (paw, hoof?) and the air flow starts, they get sucked up into his head and shoot out of his trunk.
Once the balls come out of the trunk there are a couple of different options of where they go based on the direction that the trunk is pointing in; they can either shoot out randomly into the room which would be good for encouraging crawling babies to get moving, or down through the ear with a hole in it to the pouch in the Elefun's tummy, or into the other ear and back up through the trunk creating a continuous loop.
In watching the video, hopefully you'll see my only other negative with this toy: the noise. If you've followed my reviews, you'll know that I've got a low noise-threshold (how, with my son, I'll never know!) and therefore something like this is a little irritating. It sounds like a hairdryer on constantly, and almost drowns out the music which is played. However, after a while you learn to live with it.
I was really pleasantly surprised by this toy, because The Boy adores it and is still playing with it on a daily basis months later. I think it appeals to different ages and abilities on many levels: sitting-up babies, crawlers, cruisers and toddlers. Oh and five year old boy-cousin quite likes it too!
A winner, and at £24.99 I think the Elefun Poppin' Park is a well priced toy to provide hours of fun for babies for quite a long time!
For more reviews, visit the Toys R Us Toybox application on Facebook by pressing below
We were provided with this item for the purpose of this review. My opinion is honest, and unbiased.