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Shamus launches FunFare

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One of the Wizard-related announcements at WWPh was the debut of FunFare, a new magazine which is owned by Wizard publisher Gareb Shamus but published via Wizard. You can read the PR in the jump but it will be a kind of family service magazine, with product reviews and recommendations, especially toys. The concept spins out of the “Hot Dozen Toys” event that Wizard and ToyFare have been promoting for years. It’s also a bit reminiscent of Family Fun, a magazine published by Disney for a while back in the ’90s.

UPDATE: Several people have reminded me that this is an update of Toy Wishes, a similarly-themed but more limited in scope magazine.

AND PLUS, two more staffers have apparently left Wizard, including the managing editor of Toy Wishes.

While the magazine industry is still in shell shock, FunFare is certainly a decent idea for a launch. The debut issue will come out in conjunction with the October Big Apple Con.

FunFare, the newest consumer magazine geared toward families about the joy derived from toys and games, hits retailers today. Published by Wizard Entertainment founder and CEO Gareb Shamus, FunFare takes the humor of Wizard’s collector-targeted magazine ToyFare, and expands the focus to families.

“Being the father of two amazing children, I am excited to share with other parents and their kids some of the best, innovative and coolest products that’s right for their families (and their budgets), FunFare is very personal to me,” said Gareb Shamus.

Created by Wizard founder Gareb Shamus and a team of editors, parents and children, the Premiere Issue includes:
• The 100 hottest new toys coming out this season (and who’s made our Hot Dozen list)
• Learn all about the unique history of different toys, companies, and inventors in our “Moms-approved” feature articles
• Meet the panel of “Kid Kritics” who break down this season’s new toys
• An all-new all-ages friendly version of the award-winning comic strip, “FunFare Theatre”.
• Features on how Lego toys are made and the evolution of how Fisher Price’s “Little People” have evolved over the past half century
• Features on our ever popular All-Stars and Kids ½ Dozen, FunFare lists are all featured prominently on Amazon.com.

Download the Annual Spring Hot Dozen list with photos at www.FunFareNow.com

The Holiday Issue of FunFare launches at Big Apple Con on October 16, 2009 and features the Annual Holiday Hot Dozen List – #1 most quoted list in the media!

  1. That’s… an interesting direction for the company. Their experience is in selling magazines to cult/collectible audiences, and from the way they describe this, they’re trying to sell to a completely mainstream mass market readership. Even more strangely, they’re trying to do a mass market spin-off of a collector publication, and I’m not quite sure how that’s supposed to work.

    On the plus side, there might conceivably be a gap in the market for such a thing. But launching a new mass market magazine is generally said to be a very expensive and high-risk business, and their other publications don’t seem to have been doing especially well of late.

  2. Not a bad idea… among fans and the general public, toys are an under-served market. (Name a public toy show that ranks with San Diego or NYCC…) There are collectors (Me want!) and there are nostalgics (I had one of those when I was a kid) and there are parents/relatives (I want something cool/educational/fun for my child.) A HUGE market which isn’t served well by mainstream media. It can always migrate to the web where links and ads can help fund the venture. I scan ToyFair and Lee’s Toy Review, so if there are interesting articles with none of the Wizard “frat house” style, then I’ll give it a read.

    The preview is slick and very un-Wizard-like. I hope it succeeds.

    Does Wizard have a good firewall between advertising and editorial?

  3. A magazine about toys? May as well make a silent movie about horse and buggy whips….

    What’s the over/under on Shamus firing everyone within a year?

  4. “Does Wizard have a good firewall between advertising and editorial?”

    It’s long been rumored that the amount of coverage a publisher gets in Wizard is directly related to the amount of ad space they buy, so I would say “probably not.”

  5. Jason,

    I was told the exact same thing by several Wizard staffers several times over the years, so I would say this is not a rumor.

  6. wonder who will be staffing and doing the work on the magizine since gareb has just about sent everyone who knows how to new job oppurtunities. why does he just admit it and fold wizard for good let wizard give up the ghost

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