Who would've thought that in the era of video-game obsessions, Facebook, shopping mall meet-ups, iPods, cell phones and 100-channel television, kids and families could still find time for board games, and that the most popular would be a variation of tic-tac-toe? Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle's is full of surprises like that, and always full of kids and grown-ups exploring the store for much longer than they intended. A board game called Gobblet is the store's best-seller; it's tournament-worthy tic-tac-toe with a devious bent. Other tops are the card game Apples to Apples and, according to staff, everything that involves role-playing and imagination. Nobody gets out without a sprinkling of sparkling "fairy dust." The kids are all right.
2. Yikes! Toys, 2930 E. Broadway Blvd., 320-5669
3. Toys "R" Us, 5355 E. Broadway Blvd., 748-8697; 4525 N. Oracle Road, 293-8905; www.toysrus.com