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Toys for tots drive kicks off

October 18, 2004|by WANDA T. WILLIAMS

wandaw@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN - Local veterans came together to kick off Washington County's Toys for Tots campaign Sunday.

Spearheaded by Hagerstown's Bulldog Detachment of the Marine Corps League, the local U.S. Military Veterans Motorcycle Club sponsored a toy run and rally at Washington County's AMVETS Post 10 on Frederick Street in Hagerstown.

"Every kid should have a good Christmas. It doesn't matter if you're rich or poor, black or white, it doesn't matter," said Gary Lloyd, motorcycle club president.

By 3 p.m., veterans had filled two collection boxes with toys at the rally, held from 1 to 6 p.m. Last year's Toys for Tots campaign collected toys for about 1,700 kids, said detachment member and Toys for Tots Chairman Philip Stotelmyer.

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"It has to be a new unwrapped toy," Stotelmyer said.

In the interest of child safety, Stotelmyer said organizers cannot accept toys that have been used or previously opened. Toys for Tots collection boxes and jars will be available in Washington County retail stores and other locations.

"For the first time this year, we have new official Toys for Tots collection boxes," Stotelmyer said.

Toy collection boxes and money collection jars bearing the Toys for Tots logo and a Marine Corps military seal have been set up at area veterans posts, retail stores, restaurants and taverns, Stotelmyer said.

The deadline for donating toys and money is Dec. 14. Toys will be given away to eligible children on Dec. 18 at the Long Meadow Shopping Center. Eligibility is determined by the Washington County Department of Social Services on North Potomac Street in Hagerstown.

For more information about supporting this year's toy drive, call Stotelmyer at 301-790-0296.

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