Russ Berrie US Gift Inc., www.shiningstars.com, was a famous teddy bear and plush maker that filed for bankruptcy in April 2011. At one point the company teamed up with the International Star Registry to create a unique idea, called the Shining Stars plush toys.
First, individuals needed to purchase 1 of 24 collectible plush animals that included (by title): Honey Bear, Beagle, Penguin, Dragon, Blue Bear, Pink Bear, Tabby Cat, Alligator, Cream Bear, Panda, Bunny, Pig, Lion, Monkey, Frog, Tiger, Pink Poodle, Horse, Elephant, Cow, Dragon, Hippo, Unicorn, White Cat, Yellow Lab, Black Cat, and Lamb.
Each plush toy arrived with an exclusive code, which was then registered at ShiningStars.com. The toys were collectible and unique. Each toy had a star icon embroidered on their paw pad. Originally these popular plush toys were sold for approximately $15 each.
Once the child owned the toy, parents would help them log-in to the website and they could choose the name of their very own star. The company collaborated with the International Star Registry and individuals received a certificate with the star's coordinates in the galaxy, as well as a picture of their chosen star.
A glamorous, fascinating, and mystical virtual world was also designed for kids to explore on the website. Children could personalize their star and choose characteristics for it such as being "funny, artistic, sporty, brainy, friendly, or sassy" to make their star feel more alive.
For those who collected Shining Star toys and friends, they also could receive Glow Points. Glow Points provided website users with access to hidden areas of the website that allowed them to play customized games, send e-cards, and complete many fun activities themed around the toys and the experience.
The website, ShiningStars.com is no longer available. While there were rumblings of the brand making a come back in 2012, the idea never came to fruition.
It is possible at this point you are perusing the web for information about the unique used toy you picked up at a yard sale. While it is no longer possible to purchase a star in conjunction with the toy, these toys are still adorable and the brand provided a lot of joy to children all over the world. Should you have a Shining Stars toy, it is possible you could consider reselling the item online as there is a big presence of these plush toys on Ebay.com.
While you can not purchase a cute plush toy and gain a code to buy your own star for less than $15 as was possible with ShiningStars.com, it is still possible to purchase a star from the International Star Registry. Visit StarRegistry.com to learn more about the process.