ASTORIA – Purple Cow Toys is celebrating its 17th anniversary on Saturday, June 2, by giving away glass coins good for discounts at their shop, any Astoria Sunday Market vendor or other participating merchants.

“We opened our doors in 1995 and have watched our customers grow up and now return with their own children,” reminisced Katie Murray who with Bill Colwill own Purple Cow Toys. “We were excited to be part of the new ‘Shop Astoria!’ glass coin promotion and look forward to giving these coins away on June 2!”

The coins are made by Fernhill Glass in Astoria and are a new program of Astoria Sunday Market. Purple Cow Toys, located at 1380 Commercial Street, will be giving away about 100 coins on June 2.

Murray and Colwill moved to Astoria in 1994 from Seattle, Washington. For several years before opening they collected catalogs, sought advice from specialty toy industry experts and subscribed to trade journals with the dream of someday opening a specialty toy store.

The dream came true on June 1, 1995. They started with a small inventory of toys. Thankfully, with locals hungry for toys, they were able to fill up the store within a few months. By the time the holidays came around they were in full swing.

Customers often ask, "What is the inspiration for the name Purple Cow?"

“It came from the title of a verse (you can read it in the store) called ‘The Quest for a Purple Cow,’ which is the story of a knight who went searching for a purple cow because he knew it would be wonderful when he found it,” explained Colwill.

Murray added that “Our quest is searching for good, hard-to-find toys– which has become our mantra when choosing toys for the store.”

Purple Cow Toys carries a mix of toys, activity books, games, jigsaw puzzles, arts and crafts, and, of course, hula hoops for kids of all ages. They carry many small lines and some larger such as Klutz, Playmobil, and Legos.

The “Shop Astoria!” Glass Coin promotion is a new program of Astoria Sunday Market. Hundreds of coins were created by Fernhill Glass and will be given away at various special events throughout the season. The coins are good for discounts at any Astoria Sunday Market vendor or participating merchant.

Participating merchants in downtown Astoria include Mise En Place Kitchenware, Klassy Kloset and Purple Cow Toys.

“Like” the Astoria Sunday Market Facebook page for Glass Coin giveaway announcements at or visit

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