Letters. We get letters. We get stacks and stacks of letters from youngsters living in Queens family homeless shelters hoping to get a toy or two from Santa Claus.
This year, for the Queens Chronicle’s 17th annual toy drive, three institutions will benefit from your generous contributions. They are two city homeless shelters, the Metro in Elmhurst and the Briarwood, and the River Fund New York, an organization that assists 800 children in the borough.
Octavia, 7, says in her letter that she’s been very good this year and would like Legos, science books for children and a paint set. “I love painting and started an art class in school,” Octavia said. “All my toys are in storage and I can’t get them for awhile.”
She also wrote for her 2-year-old sister, who wants a big doll, a toy phone and a tea set.
Amelia, the mother of three young children, said her son, who is 2 1/2, loves cars, while her 5-year-old daughter would like a new doll and a kitchen set, and the youngest loves books and toys with lights.
Kyle, 5, asks for a racing car and a truck, while his sister, Melanie, 3, wants a Dora the Explorer doll and a Baby Alive doll.
Kathy says she is a well-mannered child and does well in school. She asks for a Monopoly game and a Barbie doll. Another girl, Kelly, would like a Little Mommy Shopping Cart.
The mother of Peter, 19 months, requests an Elmo doll, a Fisher-Price toy and a learning toy, while Jaden, 5, wants some dolls, a doll stroller, a play medical kit and fashion accessories.
Speaking of accessories, don’t forget the teenagers, who tend to like jewelry, makeup, scarves, cologne and music. Edna writes that she’d like a set of Japanese cherry blossom body wash and lotion, while Sharon wants some body spray in a watermelon or body musk scent.
Another mother writes for her infant son, Jason, asking for baby blocks and a toy phone.
It’s hard not to be moved by these letters from people who have so little and are not asking for much.
We also want to thank those who have already brought in gifts, including Gayle Schwartz of Maspeth, Linda and James Dobson of Middle Village, Brian Kacher of Maspeth, Mr. and Mrs. Sal Lumia of Middle Village, Joseph and Patricia Paton of Holbrook, LI and the members of the Richmond Hill South Civic Association, who brought 13 bags of toys to Councilman Eric Ulrich’s Ozone Park office, one of our satellite dropoff locations. It’s the 14th year the civic has participated.
A special thanks also goes to Katie Byrnes, 9, of Floral Park, who brought in toys with her grandmother. Katie said she always has a wonderful Christmas and wanted other less fortunate youngsters to have the same experience.
Please don’t wait to deliver your new, unwrapped toys to the Chronicle office, 62-33 Woodhaven Blvd., Rego Park, Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. until Dec. 20.
Please leave your name, organization if that applies, and address with the front desk so we can thank you in upcoming editions.
Ulrich’s office is located at 93-06 101 Ave. Toys can also be left after-hours and on weekends next door to the Chronicle office at Barosa’s restaurant, 62-29 Woodhaven Blvd. or Barosa To Go at 62-37 Woodhaven Blvd.