Saturday, October 21, 2017

Young Inventor Challenge Deadline: Oct 28!

Every year for the past 3 years I've attended one of my favorite events of the year, The Chicago Toy and Game Expo.

Here are some previous posts about the event:

It's upcoming the weekend of November 18-20, and undoubtedly I'll post more about it in the next couple of weeks or so.  (And of course, I'll be in attendance.)

One of the things I like most about CHITAG is The Young Inventor Challenge.  And this year, I can write about it early enough for people to apply!  The Deadline is October 28.

The Young Inventor Challenge provides an opportunity for children ages 6 to 18 to showcase their own original toy & game inventions to industry professionals, members of the media and the general public. The judging is split into two categories, 6-11 (junior) and 12-18 (senior).

The Young Inventor Challenge is an all-day event on Saturday, November 18. You must be available at Navy Pier between 9am and 10am to set up, and stay until after the winners have been announced (approximately 5pm).

Deadline to register October 28, 2017! All entry materials and videos must be submitted by November 4th, 2017. There is a suggested $10 donation to help cover administrative costs when you participate in the Young Inventor Challenge. Participants and their immediate families get complimentary admission to ChiTAG Fair for the whole weekend!

To find out how to register, keep on reading.

They have a couple of new things this year, including online and video entries.  Each student is asked to submit a 2-minute video pitch with their entry, That will give all of the judges time to review each entry before the actual day, as well as allow students to compete from around the nation.  At the completion of the event, all registrants receive feedback on their invention from the judges.

Last year's winners (two fifth graders from Palos Heights) had their game created and marketed by Target!  I've embedded the video below, but if you can't see it, try this ABC7 Web article

There's also a one-minute commercial competition this year, in which students are asked to create a television commercial for their invention.  It's an opportunity to get silly and creative, and use costumes, props, actors, and even pets to sell your amazing toy or invention to the judges.

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:
  • Most Marketable Game Concept (Sponsored by Target and Pressman Toys)
  • Most Creative Concept (Sponsored by Play Monster Toys)
  • Most Outstanding Presentation (Sponsored by Mattel)
  • Best Commercial/Video (Sponsored by Spin Master)
  • Best Educational Concept (Sponsored by Lego)

Over $10,000 in prizes and scholarships will be awarded!

Here are just a few of the games I previewed for the Inventors Challenge last year.  As you can see, they are full of hard work and creativity, even if they can't all be winners of the challenge.

To register for this year, visit

Best of luck, and I hope to be looking at your game this year!

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