Toy and book sets have become all the rage, starting with the Christmas-themed “Elf of the Shelf” and expanding rapidly into other holidays and themes. “The Mensch on a Bench” is a toy and book set intended to celebrate Hanukkah via the character of “Moshe” who is a “mensch” which is a Yiddish word describing a person of integrity and honor. Creator Neal Hoffman featured this item on ABC’s “Shark Tank” and has since expanded his company to include other items. Since its launch in 2012, the company has been dedicated to helping Jewish and interfaith families have meaningful and fun interactions that are centered on Jewish culture.
Neal had big plans for the company. Mostly, he hopes that within five years “The Mensch on a Bench” has cemented itself as an annual tradition. In regards to advice for fledgling inventors, Neal strongly suggests using crowdsourcing websites such as Kickstarter. “You can now test your ideas before you spend a lot of money in production so test and learn,” he suggested. As for the near future, he is looking forward to the release of “Hannah the Hanukkah Hero” and “Ask Bubbe” who is a talking Jewish grandmother doll. “Everyone should have a doting grandmother in their lives offering advice, and now they can,” Neal declared. “It’s going to be a blast!”
To learn more, visit the official website.