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Westgate Commons businesses collecting toys for local tots

Two businesses located in Westgate Commons, 1500 13th Ave. E., West Fargo, are partnering with Toys for Tots to collect toys for disadvantaged children - Maurices and the Dressbarn.

All new, unwrapped toys will be collected until Dec. 10, at Maurices, and Dressbarn through Dec. 15. The toys will be distributed to local families in the community by Toys for Tots.

As a special thank you, Maurices will give those who make a donation a coupon for 20 percent off a regular-priced item.

"Many families are facing difficult times," said store manager Stacey Haecherl, "but we want children to still experience the joys of the holiday season. Our hope is that this toy drive brings lots of happiness and unending smiles to the young people in our community."

Gifts are needed for children of all ages. "It's so much fun to buy little dolls and toy trucks," said Haecherl, "but we're also encouraging customers to think about buying presents for tweens and teens who are sometimes forgotten. Things like board games, books, fragrances, jewelry and accessories make great gifts for older children."

The goal of Toys for Tots is to deliver a message of hope, through a new toy during the holidays, to less fortunate youngsters. The organization estimates that there will be 1 million more children in need this holiday season.

As their way of saying thanks to those bringing in toys, Dressbarn will give 15 percent off the purchase of a regular-priced item.

"The holidays can be hard for children from families of limited resources.

We are determined to make an even bigger difference as a company this year by collecting more than 12,000 toys," said Janice Ross. "A toy can be so much more than just a present. It can be a message of hope. Along with the Toys for Tots program, we strive to help motivate children to reach for their dreams, no matter what their circumstances. We at the West Fargo Dressbarn location are proud the company is taking part in this important effort again. We invite the local community to join us in spreading holiday cheer to those who need it most."

The U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program objectives are to help less fortunate children throughout the country experience the joy of Christmas, to play an active role in the development of children, to unite all members of local communities, and to contribute to better communities in the future. By providing an example of success, the program aspires to steer children into becoming more responsible and productive citizens.