National Play-Doh day is thanks to New Jersey Teacher
For more than 60 years kids have grown up playing with Play-Doh making everything from different shapes to food and hair.
September 16 is National Play-Doh Day, and if it wasn't for a New Jersey resident the hall of fame toy would be not much more than the wallpaper cleaner it was originally meant to be. The National Museum of Play credits Joe McVicker with helping to find kids back in the 1960's find an alternative to modeling clay. NJ.com reported that while McVicker helped find a replacement it was Dover Township nursery school teacher Kay Zufall that really helped make Play-Doh the popular product it is today.
The NJ.com story said the product was originally going to be called "Rainbow Modeling Compound" before Zufall and her husband Robert decided Play-Doh might be more appealing to children. Zufall's husband was a doctor and the couple helped found the Zufall Health Center which provides medical treatment to people in the Dover area to this day. The center's website said it was founded to provide medical care to poor people who otherwise might not have been able to afford treatment.
Play-Doh was inducted into the National Toy Hall of Fame in 1998. The 2018 inductees will be announced on November 8. This year's finalists include American Girl Dolls, chalk, Chutes and Ladders and the Magic 8 Ball.
Play-Doh is also not the only toy with New Jersey roots to be represented in the hall of fame. Bubble wrap can trace its roots back to a garage in Hawthorne at around the same time Play-Doh was introduced. While it was originally used for packing it eventually developed into a toy and stress reliever for people of all ages.