This sounds like a dream come true for both shopping parents and their children. An aerial tour of the toy department? Total genius! What a way to distract and enthrall kids while freeing their parents to browse more, and thus spend more. The kids were also likely taking inventory in their heads of all the toys they rode over in order to report back new wishes and wants to their parents. Do any of you remember seeing these IRL? Learn more about these monorails and what happened to them in this video by Peter Dibble on YouTube.
Throughout the mid-20th century, shopping centers across the United States featured an unusual Christmas tradition: kiddie monorail rides. In this video we’ll identify as many of these rides as I could find, explore where and when they were built, and discuss who was responsible for manufacturing them.
The first of these Christmas Monorails debuted at Wanamaker’s Department Store in Philadelphia. Fun fact, there was a Wanamaker’s not far from Adafruit HQ, located on Broadway and East 9th Street. It’s long gone now, but that short stretch of 9th street between Broadway and 4th Avenue is still called Wanamaker Place. Read more about the building site at 770 Broadway here on VillagePreservation.org
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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.