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Contributions to the 46th annual Lincoln County Toy Drive during Fayetteville firemen’s roadblock Saturday amounted to $7,500, and while organizers are pleased and thankful, overall donations remain low as the campaign enters December.
Altogether, $10,080 in donations have been received as of Monday for the effort, which benefits Lincoln County children up to the age of 12. The campaign, now in its 46th year, is organized by the Fayetteville Rotary Club, Fayetteville Fire Department and The Elk Valley Times.
In the 2012 drive, $12,065 had been donated as the drive entered December, and the year prior to that, in 2011, $11,194 had been given. Altogether, last year’s campaign raised $16,353 for the benefit of 779 Lincoln County children, and in 2011, $18,132 was raised for 777 local children.
“Our goal for this year is $19,000,” said Lucy Williams of The Times, also a drive co-chair. “While we appreciate every dollar given so far, we are reaching out, asking everyone to help us if they can.”
Danny Travis, Fayetteville fire chief and drive co-chair, also thanked contributors during Saturday’s roadblock, noting that 100-percent of the dollars raised goes toward the purchase of toys for children benefiting from the drive.
“I think it’s going to be a tough year,” Travis said. “Right now, we have over 500 children, but in the last couple of years we’ve provided toys for well over 700 children … We only spend $25 on each child, which isn’t much, but it lets them know they are remembered at Christmas.”
The deadline for adding children to the list is Friday afternoon, said Owen Bagley, another drive co-chair.
“The contributions are great,” Bagley said. “We couldn’t do this without the community’s help, and Lincoln County is always wonderful about responding when there’s a real need.
“There are also others we want to recognize,” added Bagley. “Thank you so much to the Marshes and Big G Express for providing us two large trailers for transporting the toys on our buy nights, and thank you, also, to Fayetteville Public Utilities for helping us with a truck and drivers. We’d also like to thank Triad Packaging out of Athens, Ala., which donates our boxes to us and have for many years.”
“This is a large campaign, and it takes everyone,” added Ken Mackay, who has been involved in the drive for more than a decade. “Again, we appreciate everyone’s help so much.”
Included in the roadblock contributions are the following donations: $1,000 from Elk River Crafters; $500 from Woodmen of the World Life Insurance Society, Lodge 599; $201 from D&M Market; $250, Anonymous; $100, Robert and Judy Strope; $100, Mid-South Garage; $50, James and Shirley Steelman; $50, Blake and Rhonda Copple; and $25, John Fitzsimmons.
Other donations received include $1,000 from the Mimosa Church of Christ, an annual contributor to the fund.
Additional donations thus far are: Howell Cumberland Presbyterian Church, $250; Robert and Kristin Carter, $100; Jubal and Debbie Ragsdale, $100; Anonymous, $160; Don Holman, $150; Attorney Don Wyatt, $100; $20, Anonymous; $10, Anonymous; $10, Pegga Jenkins (as well as toys donated); $50, Norman B. Johnson and Bruce A. Johnson; John and Laurel Skalko, $10; Boonshill Family and Community Education Club, $20; Anonymous, $50; Anonymous, $100;
Miles and Bobbie Springfield, $100 in memory of Johnny Malone; Gayle Pettersen Hughes, $50; Ricky and Lucy Williams, $50; and The Elk Valley Times, $250.
Checks can be made payable to the Lincoln County Toy Drive and sent in care of The Times, P.O. Box 9, Fayetteville, or given to any member of the Fayetteville Rotary Club or any Fayetteville firemen. If you wish to contribute but would like to remain anonymous, simply note that on your check.
And donations of new toys can also be taken by The Times at 418 North Elk Avenue, Sir’s Fabrics at 110 North Elk Avenue, or the Fayetteville Fire Department’s main fire hall at 300 West Market Street, as well as a host of other locations across Fayetteville and Lincoln County.