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SackPals Review by Deanna JasperSackPals LLC
2278 NW Jessamine Way
Portland, OR 97229
SackPals is a set of toys intended to give kids a cozy way to develop their imaginations through play. The SackPals starter set ($39.95) comes with four “Pals,” which are small brightly colored stuffed animals with names listed in the packaging (there’s an elephant, a cat, a dog, and a turtle); four flat flannel board type pieces of “Sack Bling” (a butterfly, a ladybug, a star, and a sun); and a purple “Snuggle Sack” made from soft plush material on one side and a soft flannel-like material on the other which acts as a play surface. All the animals and “bling” have Velcro so they can stick to this material. There’s a little pocket inside the sack to keep the flat pieces protected, and since it is about the size of a pillowcase, all the stuffed animals easily fit inside for storage when children are done playing. The care instructions say that the Sack may be hand-washed with mild soap, and the SackPals and Sack Bling should be cleaned with a damp cloth because they are not machine washable.
When I received the SackPals Starter Set to review, I thought it would appeal mostly to my preschool-age children. (The packaging gives a recommended age of 3+). I was a little concerned about my two-year old and the flat plastic eyes on the stuffed Pals, though they seem very securely fastened. (There is no warning on the packaging against giving them to children under age three, but it does say that “Sack Pals meets or exceeds all US Toy Testing Standards,” which I found reassuring.) My 5-year old daughter is usually the most interested in animals and stuffed toys, but she never really got into the SackPals. My two-year old has a short attention span and would play with them for a little while, but then lost interest. To my surprise, the child who enjoyed the set the most was my 7-year old son, who loved the velvety soft sack and repeatedly picked it up to put over his head and run around wildly. He and my 9-year old son both had fun using the Pals to entertain the little ones.
After a couple months with our family, most of the SackPals are scattered throughout the house, though they’re definitely getting some attention since I find them in a different place every time. The Bling is still safely tucked in the pocket of the sack because no one ever really cared to take them out again after the first time I showed them what was included in the set. I keep thinking my daughter will pick it all up and get attached, but so far that hasn’t happened, though I wouldn’t rule out the possibility in the future. I’m surprised no one has snatched the Snuggle Sack to use as a pillowcase because to me it seems pretty tempting to me.
Although the SackPals were not a huge hit with our family, I think they could be a great fit for children who are really into stuffed animals or those with sensory issues who would appreciate the cozy plush Snuggle Sack and Pals. There are also plans to release additional SackPals for those who love them and want to collect new fuzzy friends.
-Product review by Deanna Jasper, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, November, 2017