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Recap: Oakland's 2021 Toys for Tots Event!

Updated: Dec 16, 2021

THAT'S A WRAP! Below is the recap by Marc Fox, Oakland Community of Commerce Director for our Toys for Tots events and owner of Soccer Shots Bergen County West. Gallery #1 are photos by Operation Toy Train. Gallery #2 are fantastic photos from Emily Kern Photography who really captured the spirit of the event!

"WOW....what an unbelievable amount of toys donated at the Oakland location for Operation Toy Train. Cannot begin to list the # of volunteers (for fear that I will forget some)...let's just say it was a massive team & community effort to collect, count, and load that many toys onto the train. Thank you to everyone, and already having discussions for ways to grow and improve for 2022!

Not 100% sure we will get an exact count of toys collected in Oakland, but the total amount over 4 days for Operation Toy Train was 19,793 in 2019 and 31,819 in 2021. In just 1 day, Sat 12/11 they collected 21,034. (the train did not run in 2020)." ~ Marc Fox

The Oakland Community of Commerce is ever so grateful to all who helped pull together this year's event. Marc Fox and Lindsey Smith reached out to business owners and organizations to get boxes into position. Boxes were also placed in approximately 40 schools around the county. Many, many thanks to Michele Belfiore (Broker & Owner) of RE/MAX for collecting and housing the toys including taking up her office, to Enterprise-Rent-A-Car for also housing toys, to William P. Elwood III, Owner & Operator of Lawn Doctor of Central Bergen for using his vehicles to transport toys from businesses, to Realty Executives for donating the totes which held promotional items from various businesses, and to Mike's Dog House, Coffee Roasters Inc, the Oakland Public Events Committee for providing food and beverages, and to Anthony Pietropalo of APL Masonry Co LLC for providing the holiday trees for our festive Santa tent.

We want to thank the following businesses/organizations who participated in toy collections this year:

Dance Theatre of NJ, JD's Deli & Grille, Pedal Sports, J-B Pet Supplies, RE/MAX, Oakland Library, The Soccer Post, Oakland Drugs, Revival Health, Columbia Bank, ShopRite in Oakland, W's Grill, Stop & Shop in Franklin Lakes, Junior's Pizzas & Subs, UPaint Studio, American Woman Fitness Center, Franklin Lakes Public Library, barre3, Team K Taekwondo, Christie's International Real Estate, Ramsey Public Library, Mahwah Public Library, Dunkin Donuts in Franklin Lakes, Uncle Louie's, Frank's Pizza in Oakland, Sports Clips, Toytastik, Bernice Hughes (Doc Watsons NYC), Roast'd Coffee, Enterprise Rent-A-Car in Oakland, Oakland Elks Club, Huntington Learning Center in Wayne, and Brookdale Senior Living Solutions in Wayne.

And, of course, we want to give special thanks to all community members for the many fabulous donations! Have a Healthy, Safe & Happy Holiday Season!

Gallery #1 -

Photos posted by Operation Toy Train and the Oakland Community of Commerce

Gallery #2 -

Photos taken by Oakland's Emily Kern Photography

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