Holiday activities are in the air at the World of Little League® Museum and Official Store, 525 U.S. 15 (Montgomery Pike). Over the course of the next month, Santa Claus will be making a visit, new toys are being collected for the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program, and unique gifts will be available.
Santa Claus Visit - December 10
On Sunday, December 10, Santa Claus and a special guest will be taking some time out of their busy schedules to visit the Museum from noon to 3 p.m. Additionally, a Lionel train, including an engine and cars built specifically for Little League®, will be on display.
All visitors will receive free admission to the Museum during Santa's visit. Along with free admission, visitors to the museum will have the opportunity to take photographs with the Jolly Old Elf at no charge, tour the recently renovated museum, and receive a free holiday gift (vintage Little League World Series pin) with any purchase at the Official Store.
Adults visiting the Museum to check in with Santa will receive a discount coupon for the Museum's store to be used between 9 a.m. on Dec. 11 and 2:30 p.m. on Dec. 23, when the Museum prepares to close for the Christmas holiday.
Toys for Tots Donations - November 1 to December 15
For the 12th straight year, the World of Little League Museum will also be participating in the Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program this holiday season. Each visitor who brings a new, unwrapped toy with a value of at least $10 to the Museum between now and December 15, will receive one free Museum admission for later use as a thank you for supporting the local Toys for Tots program. Additionally, there will be in-store specials and holiday gift-giving ideas.
"The primary goal of Toys for Tots is to deliver, through a new toy at Christmas, a message of hope to less fortunate youngsters that will assist them in becoming responsible, productive, patriotic citizens," said Bill Dougherty, Toys for Tots Coordinator for Lycoming County for the Williamsport Detachment Marine Corps League. "It is people like you, who help people like us, make Christmas a bit brighter for many families that are in need throughout Lycoming County. To you and the organizations that collect, sort, and package the toys for distribution to these needy families, we give you a big 'Thank you' in advance."
Toys collected at the Museum will be given to the American Rescue Workers and the Salvation Army for local distribution in Williamsport, South Williamsport, Loyalsock Township, Cogan Station, Trout Run, and Linden.
"In this season of giving, we encourage everyone to consider the children of our community by bringing in a qualifying toy to the World of Little League Museum," said Lance Van Auken, Little League Vice President and World of Little League Museum Executive Director. "We're grateful once again to the Marine Corps Reserve for this program, and we're proud to be taking part for the 12th consecutive year."
In addition to the toys donated at the World of Little League, children in Greater Lycoming County benefit from Toys for Tots donations at area collection centers. Donations collected in Jersey Shore will be distributed through the Grace Lutheran Church; donations from Hughesville, Montoursville, Muncy, and Picture Rocks will be distributed by the Veterans of Vietnam War Post 51. The Montgomery Christmas Committee will distribute toys to Montgomery area children.
"Toys and monies collected locally stay local," said Mr. Dougherty.
Less than three percent is spent on fund-raising and overhead, according to the national organization. Checks and money orders made payable to Toys for Tots should be sent to Bill Dougherty, 500 Quail Lane Cogan Station, Pa., 17728. Those will then be sent to the headquarters of Toys for Tots in Quantico, Va. The funds will then be placed into Mr. Dougherty account so he can buy toys for age groups that the five distribution sites are short of for Christmas. Local Toys for Tots campaigns are conducted in 825 Communities.
Holiday Shop Local - November 24 to December 30
Additionally, during the month of December, the World of Little League Museum is joining with businesses across the Susquehanna River Valley in the Holiday Shop Local campaign in coordination with the Susquehanna River Valley Visitors Bureau. As part of the campaign, which begins Black Friday (November 24) and ends the last week in December, the Museum is offering one free t-shirt, hoodie, hat, pin or souvenir with the purchase of an item of equal or greater value at regular price. The discount cannot be combined with any other offer. Twenty thousand shopping passes are available for distribution at more than 100 locations throughout the valley and Pennsylvania Welcome Centers.
Shopping passes will be available beginning Monday, November 20, throughout participating venues in the Susquehanna River Valley.
Throughout the upcoming holiday season, the museum will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, except for Thanksgiving Day (November 23) and December 24, 25, 31, and January 1, when it will be closed. Please contact the museum (570-326-3607) or check its digital sign or Facebook page at Facebook.com/LittleLeagueMuseum for updates on store specials, weather alerts, and more.
Rates for the museum are $2 for children up to the age of 12, $3 for anyone 62 and older, and $5 for general admission. Children four years old and younger are admitted at no charge. Members of the military, active, retired and honorably discharged, and up to five immediate family members are admitted at no charge all year-long.
About Toys for Tots
Toys for Tots offers toys for infants through children 12 years old, although in some communities that is extended to children who are 14- to 16-years old. The Marine Toys for Tots Foundation has supported the endeavor since 1991.
Toys for Tots does not publish an appropriate list of toys to donate. Instead it suggests donors give what they would consider an appropriate gift for their own child or relative. Realistic looking weapons and gifts with food are not distributed, however.
Those wishing to request a toy for a child may do so online by contacting Mr. Dougherty at firstname.lastname@example.org. The mailing address and telephone of the person requesting the toy also are required. The program enlists the aid of local social welfare agencies and churches to distribute toys.
Local business leaders play a key role by allowing Marines to locate collection receptacles in their stores; by providing free warehouse space during October, November and December for sorting and storing toys; by providing vehicles to collect toys from collection sites; by sponsoring toy raising events; and by helping Marines receive maximum media exposure for Toys for Tots.
Local Toys for Tots campaigns are conducted in 759 communities covering all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.