EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment is holding its 14th annual Toys for Tots collection drive through Saturday, Dec. 9.

All are welcome to bring in new, unwrapped toys and spread holiday cheer this holiday season to a child in need. Meadowlands Racing & Entertainment will be donating all collected toys to the local Marine Corps Toys for Tots.

“We are proud to host a Toys for Tots drive each holiday season,” said Jason M. Settlemoir, GM/COO of Meadowlands Racing and Entertainment. “The holiday season is about family and helping others that are less fortunate. We want to be able to make a child’s Christmas just a little bit brighter.”

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Since its approval to be an official activity of the U.S. Marine Corps in 1995, the mission of the Toys for Tots program is to collect new, unwrapped toys during October, November and December each year. The program then distributes those toys as Christmas gifts to less fortunate children in the community in which the campaign is conducted.

YONKERS, N.Y. Empire City Casino at Yonkers Raceway employees were in the Christmas spirit, joining General Counsel Timothy Rooney Jr. at the inaugural “Wrapped with Love” volunteer event to assist those in need during the holiday season on Nov. 13 in the casino’s Good Time Room.

The supportive staffers wrapped toys that will be donated to Catholic Charities and the Yonkers-based Aisling Irish Community Center as part of 11th Annual Christmas Spirit Coat & Toy Drive. The gifts will assist the organization’s local families this upcoming holiday season.

Toys for Tots returns to Aqueduct Racetrack on Cigar Mile Day

OZONE PARK, N.Y. — The New York Racing Association’s (NYRA) annual Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Foundation weekend of giving at Aqueduct Racetrack on Cigar Mile Day, Saturday, Dec. 2 and Sunday, Dec. 3.

A holiday tradition at Aqueduct, Toys for Tots will collect new, unwrapped toys, cash contributions, and checks made payable to Toys for Tots, with donation boxes located at the main Clubhouse entrance and the Turf and Field entrance.

"It's a privilege for the New York Racing Association to partner with the Marines Corps' Toys for Tots Foundation to brighten the holidays for so many children each year," said Lynn LaRocca, NYRA Senior Vice President and Chief Experience Officer. "Our fans and employees have generously supported Toys for Tots over the years, and we are pleased to encourage that giving spirit again in 2017." 

In addition to NYRA's contributions, Toys for Tots is supported by generous contributions from thoroughbred owner Harold Lerner, the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, trainer Gary Contessa, and thoroughbred owner Salvatore Sano. 

"Putting a smile on the face of a child who may not otherwise receive a gift this holiday season is a priceless feeling," said Harold Lerner. "I hope that these acts of kindness will inspire the children receiving the gifts to go on to do great things, knowing that there is a community that cares about them."

"The holidays are the perfect time to count our blessings and reach out to help those less fortunate than ourselves," said NYTHA President Rick Violette Jr. "New York's horsemen have long been supporters of the Marine Corps' Toys for Tots Foundation, and we are proud to do our part once again as we celebrate the 70th anniversary of this great initiative."

"Toys for Tots is not only a great way to give back this holiday season, but it is a great way to honor our military and the Marines who have been operating this great program for 70 years," said trainer Gary Contessa. "I am proud to have supported Toys for Tots for more than a decade and to support it again this year."

On Dec. 2 and Saturday, Dec. 9, NYRA will be holding a Stocking Stuffer Sale of vintage giveaway items. A portion of the proceeds from the sale will be donated to Toys for Tots.

Aqueduct Racetrack is located at 110-00 Rockaway Blvd, South Ozone Park, N.Y.

Donation boxes to be located at Clubhouse entrance and Turf and Field entrance.

Toys can be brought 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

See www.playmeadowlands.com for more information.

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