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Stadium GM collecting for Toys for Tots

Stadium GM Superstore sales professionals, from left, Joe Vittorio, Ben Springer, Jordan Shaughnessy, Mark Everly and Scott Henthorne display some of the toys already gathered for the 7th annual Toys for Tots campaign to benefit children in need in Columbiana County. Area residents can drop off new unwrapped toys still in the original packaging until Dec. 18 at the dealership, which is pushing to double last year’s goal and hit the 1,000-toy mark for this year. Toys can be donated from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. (Salem News photo by Mary Ann Greier)

SALEM — Area residents can help break records this year by dropping off as many new, unwrapped toys as possible at the Stadium GM Superstore for the 7th annual Toys for Tots marathon toy drive by the Marines and the Chevy All-Stars.

“Columbiana County collects a ton of toys. A lot of charitable people around here work hard for this,” Stadium GM Sales and Leasing Professional Scott Henthorne said.

The campaign reached a goal of 500 toys last year and set a new goal for this year of 1,000 toys — the dealership located on West State Street has already filled several of the familiar boxes carrying the Toys for Tots logo and wants to fill several more before the deadline of Dec. 18 for accepting toys.

Donated toys must be new, not wrapped and still in the original packaging to be accepted into the Toys for Tots program — cost does not matter. Henthorne said everybody likes to receive that one gift that’s all their own for Christmas.

Toys can be donated at the Stadium GM Superstore from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

The Toys for Tots program holds a special place in the heart of Stadium GM Superstore owner Shorty Navarro, who served as a Marine himself and loves to host the program and work with the Marines.

“The last few years, people from the community have come out and helped this toy drive be as big as possible. We hope they will continue to do so. Our goal for this drive is to help put some smiles on some children’s faces this Christmas season,” Navarro said in a press release. “Christmas is all about giving. We are going to start off the drive with a large donation for area kids and we hope that others will join in and give to help use exceed our goal.”

The toys are distributed to children in need in Columbiana County and Henthorne said some past families who have been recipients of toys have returned a few years later to give back to the program.

“I believe in Toys for Tots with all my heart,” Henthorne said, adding there’s a lot of great people in Salem and Columbiana County.

The distribution of toys will take place on Dec. 19.

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