Do you need a fun place to take your child in downtown Frederick? Visit the Dancing Bear toy store! The Dancing Bear is not your average toy store—as witnessed when I visited the store recently. Two very excited young children ran down the sidewalk shouting, “The Dancing Bear! The Dancing Bear!” These two adorable kids were just as excited as I was to visit this awesome store. As a shopper at Dancing Bear since it opened over 14 years ago, I have spent many hours in their store, both with my children and without. It’s a very unique toy store with very cool toys and educational items.
Batteries are not required with the toys that are sold there—the toys tend to be simple and classic yet extremely fun for children of all ages (adults too!). There’s bright colorful toys and adorable board books for babies; different blocks and building sets (I highly recommend the Keva blocks!); games for all ages (including wonderful games that promote reading, science, social studies, math, etc); interactive play items (fun glitter princess wands and safe non-toxic play food) and a huge section of small toys and games that are perfect for travel treats or stocking stuffers or non-candy Easter treats. The Dancing Bear also carries science kits and well-written children’s books.
What makes this toy store so unique is that there are toys that are out of the box, ready for your child to play with and try out (the large marble structure always has marbles to play with). There are child-sized tables and chairs for children to sit down and explore the toys. The owners love to teach children how to play items; and they themselves have played with each item they sell to make sure it is safe, kid-friendly and most of all fun.
The Dancing Bear isn’t just about toys! The store, located on Patrick Street also has a wonderful bright and cheerful back room. Every week they offer classes for kids. These classes are taught by professionals who know kids: a certified art teacher, a pediatric occupational therapist, and a dance instructor (story times are led by librarians). Also new this year, the Dancing Bear is offering evening classes for parents and educators of young children.
At the Dancing Bear, both children and adults can learn things in a fun, safe and unique environment. Also, to note, the Dancing Bear’s staff is extremely friendly (they talk to kids and love to be around kids) and they have a bathroom available to guests. Their website (and emails) provide up-to-date information about upcoming events, summer camps and classes. Be prepared, this is a store you will want to buy something for your kids at! Be prepared to spend at least twenty dollars. You won’t be disappointed! The toy, book or game that your child picks will actually be played for a long time. Dancing Bear is also a great store to shop for a birthday gift. Don’t hibernate this season, take a winter stroll down to the Dancing Bear today!
Also, if you visit the Dancing Bear on Patrick Street in Frederick, stroll around the corner to Market Street and visit the Curious Iguana, a truly wonderful Independent Bookstore run by the same couple who runs the Dancing Bear. The employees will help you find a book or two that you just won’t be able to put down. The Curious Iguana also has a larger children’s book section as well as books for adults (and the best shelf of journals that I’ve ever seen!).
These two stores are truly on my Top 10 Stores to shop at in the State of Maryland as well as in Frederick, MD. Hope you can visit Frederick soon.
What a perfect day in Maryland!