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Candy Land Comes Alive In Wheeling: Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum Scales Up Retro Board Game

Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum patrons Seth and Isaac Mowder get a sneak peek of the life-size Candy Land board as it’s set up Saturday.

WHEELING — A retro board game is getting scaled up to celebrate the opening of the Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum’s new game room this week.

Opening Tuesday for museum members and Wednesday to the general public, Hasbro’s classic game Candy Land is getting a life-sized rendition in the lobby of the museum. Colored squares cover the floor over the weekend as museum workers recreate Candy Cane Forest and Gumdrop Mountain alongside the usual exhibits.

Gift shop manager Lynn Maguire, who came up with the idea, said the event is to celebrate the launch of the museum’s game room, which celebrates and exhibits board games from the 1920s to today. Dozens of renditions of Monopoly — not even half of the museum’s collection, Maguire said — line the highest shelves, while others, from Cooties to Linq and Buzz Word span the nearly 100-year exhibit.

Inside the game room, Maguire said, visitors will be able to play magnetic board games on the walls of the room, or detach them to play on the tables. When not otherwise in use, the tables are set up for checkers, Connect 4, KerPlunk and extra-large Jenga, as well as other classic games.

“There’s some really odd and bizarre games in here,” Maguire said. “There’s Q*Bert from the ’80s, and ’70s and ’60s through there. The Monopoly on top is not quite half of our collection — I said, ‘I bet we could get them all up there,’ but no, not even half, and we have quite a bit of those, dating back to the 1930s.

“There’s going to be 13 games … and people can play them with magnets, or take them off and play them on the table, and they’re changing throughout the year. There are games from 1960, to completely new games that are still in magazines, just a total hodgepodge of games, and there’s age groups from kindergarteners, to ones that are more difficult for adults.”

Maguire said the Candy Land event will return in future years, but this is the first year the museum is setting it up.

The life-size Candy Land will be available from Tuesday to Thursday, with a reduced admission price of $10 for adults and $5 for children. The museum and game will be open from 6 to 8 p.m.

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