Businesses spread cheer through Toys for Tots

Residents at TrailSide Senior Living in Forest Lake display toys donated there for Toys for Tots. The senior home is also holding a food drive for Second Harvest and a hat, mitten and scarf drive for an elementary school in White Bear Lake. Residents shown were gathered Friday for the birthday celebration of 91-year-old Helen Schultz (fifth from right). (Photo by Clint Riese)

Residents at TrailSide Senior Living in Forest Lake display toys donated there for Toys for Tots. The senior home is also holding a food drive for Second Harvest and a hat, mitten and scarf drive for an elementary school in White Bear Lake. Residents shown were gathered Friday for the birthday celebration of 91-year-old Helen Schultz (fifth from right). (Photo by Clint Riese)

Donations accepted through Dec. 21 at local drop-off sites

 

A new collection site in Forest Lake this year is Taco John’s, where a homemade train is holding donations. The “Breakfast Betty North Pole Express” was made by assistant manager Becky Wagner. On Friday, shift manager Devin Vacha and general manager Dawn Pearson showed off the merry decoration. (Photo by Clint Riese)

A new collection site in Forest Lake this year is Taco John’s, where a homemade train is holding donations. The “Breakfast Betty North Pole Express” was made by assistant manager Becky Wagner. On Friday, shift manager Devin Vacha and general manager Dawn Pearson showed off the merry decoration. (Photo by Clint Riese)

Clint Riese
News Editor

Several area businesses are helping community members spread Christmas cheer this holiday season by serving as collection points for Toys for Tots.

Now in its 66th year, the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve program provides new toys to children in need in every state. To date more than 452 million toys have been unwrapped by more than 209 kids.

Regionally, the Twin Cities Toys for Tots campaign ranks among the country’s best. It distributed more than 186,000 presents in 2012, good for the sixth-highest mark in the nation.

The Forest Lake area is generous, as well. This year at least 11 local businesses are registered drop-off sites. Gifts will be accepted through Saturday, Dec. 21.

Forest Lake

ABRA Auto Body & Glass, 238 SW 19th St., 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Advanced Dermatology Care, 25 Lake St. N., 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday

Cub Foods, 2013 W. Broadway Ave.

La Grande BeautySpa and Boutique, 56 E. Broadway Ave. Suite 106, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Re/Max Synergy, 920 W. Broadway Ave., 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday

Taco John’s, 1966 W. Broadway Ave. (through Dec. 20), 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.

TrailSide Senior Living, 19850 Forest Road N., 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Wells Fargo, 208 Lake St. S. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday

Wireless Zone, 209 SW 12th St., 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Wyoming

Blue Sky Animal Hospital, 26850 Kettle River Blvd., 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Friday and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday

CU Recovery Inc., 26263 Forest Blvd., 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Requesting gifts

Families in need can register to receive Christmas gifts for their children (through age 16) by calling 612-298-2622 by Thursday, Dec. 12. For more information, or online registration, visit www.PlaceOfHopeMN.org.

After registering, families will be informed of a pick-up time on Tuesday or Wednesday, Dec. 17 or 18, at Redeemer Baptist Church, 2479 Geneva Ave. in Oakdale.

Photo identification (Social Security card, school ID card, insurance card) will be required for the parent and each child.

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