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Sex toy vending machine debut was "crazy"

The machine debuted at the Philadelphia Burlesque Festival last Thursday.
Attendees of the Philadelphia Burlesque Festival check out the Pink Box Vending machiCourtesy of Ashlee Kulp/ Pink Box Vending

The debut of the nation’s first sex toy vending machine was wildly successful, representatives of the company that built it say.

“It was crazy,” said Timaree Schmit, the spokesperson for Pink Box Vending. “People were just crowded around the machine. It was sort of exciting. It was like ‘who wants to be the very first person to do this.”

Schmit said sales figures weren’t immediately available, but condoms and a kind of sex aid whose name rhymes with “dock sing’ were big sellers.

“Those are pretty small purchases, and easy to need,” Schmit said. Larger items, or items whose owners gently reassured them that they were large enough, also sold.

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The machine debuted on May 28 at the Philadelphia Burlesque Festival, so perhaps the audience tended toward those who might more likely than not to buy intimacy aids from a publicly located vending machine, but Schmit said the company is hoping to announce a permanent home for the machine this week.

“We want to be in nightclubs first, as a way to show people this doesn’t have to be a niche market item,” she said.

Yes, she says, buying a sex toy from a publicly located vending machine might turn some people off. So the company is looking for a discrete locationthat isn'tnecessarily inside brick and mortar sex shops. Purchases might also come with a non-descript bag.

And Schmit said the company has fielded inquiries from across the country.

Right now, there is just one machine, designed by the folks at Pink Box Vendingto accommodateitems with different shapes and sizes. A second one is in the works. Eventually, the company will be able to track sales data through a centralized database, meaning that the company will be able to market merchandise that’s more appropriate for say a gay bar or strip club.

Business aside, the company has garnered a lot of interest.

“We are the first major innovation in this industry in a really long time,” she said.

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