Dec. 6, 2004

Contact: Mary Jones, Toys for Tots, (785) 766-3023.

Toys for Tots ‘Drive for 500’ event to be held at Dole Institute of Politics Dec. 11

LAWRENCE -- The public is invited to donate a toy and enjoy a free lunch when the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas hosts the Douglas County Toys for Tots "Drive for 500" event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 11.

The Toys for Tots committee hopes to collect 500 new toys at the event to distribute to area children. Members of the community are invited to drop by the Dole Institute, adjacent to the Lied Center, with a toy donation and to enjoy live entertainment and grilled hot dogs, chips and soda provided by Hy-Vee, 4000 W. Sixth St. People who donate a toy or money will be registered to win door prizes, including a year of free cable from Sunflower Broadband.

Other prizes include a free Sunday brunch for two at Alvamar, a $50 gift certificate from the Hereford House and a $50 gift from Pachamama's.

This is the second year for the drive, which brought in almost 600 toys last year.

WIBW 94 Country will broadcast live from the Dole Institute from 10 a.m. to noon. Live music from the Sleeping Dogs, a two-man guitar and mandolin group, will start at noon. Googols of Fun also will provide free activities for children. A silent auction will feature such items as two tickets to the KU-Missouri basketball game and a birthday party at Googols of Fun.

“ It's just a really fun day and a good way for us to raise toys,” said Mary Jones, one of the local coordinators on the Toys for Tots committee.

Toys also may be donated at any of the Toys for Tots drop boxes around Lawrence: Century 21, Checkers, Children's Book Shop, CD McGrew (Sixth Street), all area Dillon’s stores, the Dole Institute, Googols of Fun, Half Price Books, Hastings, both Hy-Vees, KLWN-KLZR radio station, KU Credit Union, Kansas Union, Lawrence Athletic Club, Minuteman Press, Stephens Real Estate, Scotch Fabric, Royal Crest Bowling, all area Kwik Shops, Mass St. Deli, Buffalo Bob's, Weaver’s, police stations and all area McDonald’s.

Toys for Tots is a program run by the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve that collects new, unwrapped toys during October, November and December each year and distributes those toys as Christmas gifts to needy children in the community.

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