ShareThis Page

Mt. Pleasant area toy drive aims to meet rising need

| Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012, 10:15 p.m.
Mt. Pleasant Journal
Nadia Speney (foreground), an employee at O'Rourke Crystal and Antique Glass, stands near a Christmas tree at the local business adorned with 'Treasures for Children' wish list tags distributed by (background, from left) the Rev. Dale Porterfield, chairman of the Salvation Army's Mt. Pleasant Service Unit, and Marianne Bailey, a longtime unit volunteer. in a photo taken Friday, Nov. 9, 2012. A.J. Panian | Mt. Pleasant Journal

No less than 200 needy children throughout the Mt. Pleasant area see a brighter holiday season when they receive toys and other gifts collected during the annual Christmas Toy Drive conducted by the Salvation Army's Mt. Pleasant Service Unit, said the Rev. Dale Porterfield, the unit's chairman and pastor of the Community Church of Hecla.

This year, more children are signed up for the organization's drive than ever before, Porterfield said.

“We have 300 children signed up this year,” said Porterfield, of Mt. Pleasant. “That is definitely more than we've ever had.”

For that reason, Porterfield said he is particularly appreciative of efforts like those being put forth by the staff at O'Rourke Cut Glass & Gifts.

The business owned by Peter O'Rourke, the renowned cut glass and crystal artist, will hold its own toy drive starting today to benefit the Salvation Army's initiative.

That drive — organized by Nadia Speney, the business' product marketing manager — is scheduled to begin today at the business located at the Mt. Pleasant Glass Center at 402 E. Main St. in Mt. Pleasant.

“I'm just glad to be involved,” said Speney, of Port Vue, who was hired last summer at the business. “Nobody's against giving to people in need.”

That is the hope of Marianne Bailey, of Mt. Pleasant, a longtime Salvation Army volunteer and chairperson of the toy drive.

“We have more people in need now, but people who usually give have less, too,” Bailey said. “Anyone who can help, at all, is truly appreciated.”

Speney has set up a large, drop-off box decorated in red, white and green wrapping paper in the store with the hope that patrons stopping in might consider offering a wrapped toy donation.

“They're also welcome to drop off any store-bought toy, (they are) encouraged, even,” Speney said.

Patrons who donate will be entered into a drawing to win two tickets to the Pittsburgh Steelers' home game vs. the Cleveland Browns on Dec. 30. A drawing for the tickets will be held Dec. 23.

Next to the box is a Christmas tree adorned with 20 “Treasures for Children” wish list tags distributed by the Salvation Army.

Each of the tags include the first name, age, clothing size and specific gift request of a child from a family who signed up to benefit from the Salvation Army's drive. The tag also includes a due date for when it the requested gift is produced.

“I'm hoping donors will bring back the tag because I would like to keep it with the gift,” Speney said.

The store received the tags along with several other businesses including Walmart, Diamond Pharmacy, Smillie's Restaurant, S&T Banks in Mt. Pleasant and East Huntingdon and several area churches and other organizations

Participants will turn over all toys collected to the Salvation Army on Dec. 12 for distribution by Salvation Army officials to those in need from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 13 at Community Church of Hecla in Southwest, Speney said.

Speney said O'Rourke Cut Glass & Gifts continue to collect toys from willing donors through Dec. 14-15, at which time they will again be distributed to the Salvation Army for the organization's second planned giveaway from 10 a.m. to noon Dec. 15 at the Mt. Pleasant United Methodist Church, or the Town Clock church, at 645 W. Main St. in Mt. Pleasant.

A.J. Panian is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-547-5722 or apanian@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.