November 27, 2017 Mark Berryman

You may have seen the tall cardboard boxes in businesses around town, but that’s not the only opportunity to donate toys to the highly regarded charity sponsored by the United States Marine Corps and assisted locally by the Georgia State Patrol.

Trooper First Class William Jordan is spearheading the local effort and says this long-running program provides much needed smiles to many children who, without these gifts, would have none.

The Georgia State Partol is participating in the Toys For Tots program. It’s a program which was designed by the United States Marine Corps Reserve in 1947. It’s basically set up to allow communities to donate toys to less fortunate children. It allows kids who normally might not get a gift this time of year to actually receive something,” says Jordan.

Along with the usual drop-off locations, the GSP has organized some toy drives as well. Jordan says at least three are already planned.

We’re actually going to have some toy drives. We’ve got three set up right now. On Dec. 9 from 1-3 p.m. we’re going to have a toy drive at the Georgia State Patrol post. It’s at 1529 Knotts Bridge Crossing Road. It’s in Lavonia. We’re actually going to have a jumpy house, we’re going to have hot dogs, the kids can come out and meet Trooper Santa. We’re going to do another toy drive. This one will actually be Dec. 3 from 4-6 p.m. at the Walmart in Hartwell, and then we’ll have one on Dec. 16 at the Walmart in Elberton,” says Jordan.

Drop-off sights in Franklin, Hart and Stephens Counties include:

Dollar General Stores in all three counties, Subway in all three counties, Pinnacle Bank in Hartwell, Royston and Lavonia, Fred’s in Lavonia and Royston, Rite Aid in Lavonia and Royston

In Stephens County: Toccoa Library, Oconee Federal Bank, Verizon Office, Georgia Credit Union, DOCO Credit Union, Taylor Automotive, Headquarters Salon and the Stephens County Courthouse.

Hart County: Athens First Bank and Trust, First Citizens Bank, Northeast Georgia Bank, Turner Concrete and Bank of America.

In Franklin County: ABC Pawn (Lavonia), Edward Jones (Lavonia), Dixie Dale (Franklin Springs), Family Dollar (Carnesville), Ty Cobb Museum (Royston), St. Mary’s Hospital Wellness Center (Lavonia) and Harbin Lumber Company (Lavonia).