SPRINGVILLE — Gift commercials are on TV and the radio and the stores are stocked with everything local residents need to deck the halls and make merry, this upcoming holiday season. The Springville Kiwanis Club is kicking off its annual Toys for Tots drive, run annually to help local families in need to stuff their stockings, come December.
On Nov. 30, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, the local Kiwanis club will host a showing of “The Polar Express” at Joylan Theatre, located at 11 West Main St. in Springville. The movie has been donated by Merrimack Insurance, with theatre owners Ted and Debby Adams allowing the use of the space. The movie will play at 10 a.m. and there will also be a basket raffle and a visit from Santa, to round out the day.
In conjunction with Small Business Saturday, which is a national effort to encourage residents to shop local businesses, the Kiwanis Club will be offering coupons to a local restaurant, for a post-Thanksgiving lunch that does not involve leftover turkey and stuffing.
In previous years, admission to the movie has been a nominal monetary fee and a toy donation to the club’s toy drive, but this year, the club is requesting that attendees bring just a toy for a local child.
“We got rid of the [monetary] donation and are asking people to bring a toy for our drive, so we can help out the kids,” said Springville Kiwanis President Dave Guadagna.
This year, the club is hoping people will get a jump on donations, to give the club more time to collect as many toys as possible. Donation boxes are available, starting this weekend, at Community Bank and Tractor Supply Co. in Springville.
“We’re hoping we can get donations early, so we can tailor what we have to do,” Guadagna explained. “Typically, we don’t get toys until Thanksgiving or after, and that only gives us so much time to get everything organized and figure out if we’re missing anything.”
The Kiwanis Club’s goal is to raise money for charitable events, focusing on the children in the area. While the club does not have a brick-and-mortar building, its members meet twice per month, to discuss upcoming drives and recipient ideas.
On Dec. 7, the Kiwanis Club will fill the Concord Town Hall with Christmas, as it distributes toys collected at its donation sites and at the Nov. 30 movie. While Guadagna explained that the families who receive applications to take advantage of that drive are located within the Springville-Griffith Institute School District, leftovers are donated to the Trading Post Community Care Center.
“Their reach is much further, so the toys really go a long way,” Guadagna said. “Our goal is to help as many people as possible.”
For more information about the Kiwanis Club and its activities, visit sprngvll.tripod.com.