JPMA Recognizes The StrollAway as a Finalist in the 2008 Innovation Award Competition, as Parents Recognize Benefits of City Living

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The StrollAway, the one and only stroller storage solution,is named a JPMA Innovation Award finalist.The StrollAway was invented by a NYC mother to solve a problem common to all urban families, stroller storage. In addition to making its national debut at the ABC Expo trade show in Las Vegas September 7-11, the StrollAway hits the market just as the news media reports on latest trend of parents choosing to raise families in cities as opposed to the suburbs.

With families growing, and the price of apartments rising, something's gotta give -- and usually that something is space.

The JPMA, the national trade organization which represents 95% of the country's juvenile products manufacturers, has just announced the finalists in their prestigious 2008 Innovation Award Competition. Among the finalists, is an innovative product which hits the market just as news outlets across the country herald the latest trend of parents opting to raise their children in cities as opposed to the traditional suburban exodus.
Invented by New York City mother, Mary Ann Schwanewede, the StrollAway was a direct response to Mrs. Schwanewede's fruitless search for a way to store her sons' stroller, when her downtown coop received a fire code violation for leaving it parked in the hallway.

While developing the StrollAway, she quickly realized that she was not alone in her dilemma. "The number of children younger than five in Manhattan has increased about 30 percent since 2000," according to the March 2008 Washington Post article entitled 'The Big Apple's Little Boom.'

In the same Washington Post piece, Kenneth T. Jackson, a professor of urban history at Columbia University, says, "In a reversal of a decades' long trend of flight to the suburbs, affluent couples are deciding to stay, at a time when crime is low, some schools have improved and urban life has a new allure." In December 2007, New York Post writer, Jennifer Gould Keil profiled two New York families living in tight quarters. "With families growing, and the price of apartments rising, something's gotta give -- and usually that something is space."
Schwanewede says, "While I invented the StrollAway for myself and my own space challenged family, I have come to realize that this might actually help ease some of the tension between families choosing to stay in the city and their neighbors. It's certainly helped with mine!"

In the March 12th issue of New York Magazine, S. Jhoanna Robledo explores the recent phenomenon of young children in city apartment buildings and the resulting culture clash due to children's gear in common spaces. Carol Burstein, an Upper West Side resident says her building is livelier now that it has kids around, but she dislikes the strollers and car seats stashed in the hallway. "It just looks unseemly," she says. More than unattractive, strollers in hallways are considered a fire hazard by the NYFD and therefore, illegal.

The StrollAway has been building buzz and garnering raves from the online juvenile press and mom and shopping blogs, since its introduction in April of 2008. "This is a product that should have been made years ago," says SuperCoolBaby.com. Cool Mom Picks says, "Mom Mary Ann Schwanewede hit a home run with this one!" And, "Simple yet genius" is what the reviewers at gizmos for babies.com had to say.

Thoughtfully designed, the StrollAway mounts over the top of a door, requires no tools or drilling (a bonus for renters) and adjusts to accommodate most stroller models. Sturdy steel construction means the StrollAway will easily hold up to 35 pounds and folds flush to the door when not in use. The StrollAway is currently available online at http://www.metrotots.com and coming to retailers soon. Now, if only someone can invent a device to prevent toddlers from pushing every button on the elevator!

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Mary Ann Malone
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