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Weekend Expo Is All About Ohana

The baby crawling contest is a highlight of the Oh Baby! Family Expo | Photo courtesy of Oh Baby! Family Expo

You know how everyone’s always saying how quickly children grow up? The same can be said about the Oh Baby! Family Expo.

This popular event, now in its 10th year, will be back at Neal Blaisdell Center this weekend with some old favorites and new additions.

The expo welcomes thousands of anxious parents-to-be and families every year. Nervous new moms and dads can test drive the best, safest products on the market for their expanding families. Show director Anna Lau-Parish says that these newbies often come back with different needs as their children mature.

“We have the pleasure of seeing them come back each year to possibly get a new outfit, as their little one surely outgrows them fast, or to find out about extracurricular activities like dance, sports, tutoring or how to join a parenting/child play group! It’s an ohana affair.”

One of the highlights is the baby crawling contest. The track measures “10 very long feet, if you’re the parent at the finish line waving everything but the kitchen sink to get your child to race toward you and cross that finish line,” laughs Lau-Parish. “It’s sometimes more fun watching the parents with all their gestures, waving, twisting and turning. ”

The fun and games continue with a new attraction this year, Toy & Game and Party Expo. Expanding party offerings was a natural extension, since vendors who cater to first birthdays and children’s parties already participate.

The Hawaii Toy & Game Expo will feature products straight off parenting.com and Popular Science‘s list of Best Toys of Toy Fair 2013. Children and kids at heart can touch, see, feel and play with the toys and games and judge if they’re hot or not. There will be the Toys R Us Nerf Dart Tag Arena for group play and board games such as Disruptus. Another buzz-worthy board game, Flip2bfit, incorporates physical fitness.

You never know. It could be the renaissance of “family game night.”

“Remember when there were no TVs, no computers, no electronics – just the family, some dice and your favorite game piece?” recalls Lau-Parish, a fan of old classics such as Monopoly. She’s always been partial to the boot token. (Hasbro recently retired the iron and added a cat to the mix.)

Quick Takes:

* Average number of attendees: 10,000-12,000
* Baby crawl across the track: anywhere from 6 seconds to 3 minutes
* Product no parent should live without: Baby wipes. Hand-crafters sell unique embellished wipe holders at the expo.

Oh Baby! Family Expo
Neal Blaisdell Center
Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 12 and 13), 10 a.m.-5 p.m.