So, every year I do the Letters to Santa charity thru the Chicago Sun-Times (and so should you!!). I get a few letters from kids asking for Barbies, trucks, cars, Hot Wheels, and the like. I make a harrowing run to Toys R Us or wherever, wrap them up, and send them away.
In 2008 (kind of a bad year, remember?) I got a letter from a girl who asked for a warm hat. She was SIX and was asking for A HAT. A toy or a stuffed animal didn't even make her radar. Since then, shopping for toys for a couple of Santa letters hasn't seemed like enough. I find it unconscionable that any child in this country, a country of so much, should be wanting for something so basic as a stuffed animal at this time of year (or any time, really).
Thus, we are once again reaching out to you all, our friends and fans in Chicago, to perhaps spend some time going thru back closets, or overloaded toy boxes and shelves for gently used stuffed animals.
Since our humble beginnings with this, when we might collect enough to cover a classrom, the drive has grown so that in 2013 we collected enough so that EVERY child in the kindergarten thru 2nd grade program received their own stuffed animal. Not only that, the older children have been helping with the wrapping of the presents for their younger schoolmates.
If you can't make it, you can drop off at Bloodshot Records, 3039 W Irving Park Road, our office hours are M-F, 10AM-6PM. A lot of the time we are here later, so call to check (773-604-5300) .
We will absolutely be collecting at the Bloodshot Holiday Pop-Up shop at our HQ on Saturday December 3rd.
Either way, in exchange, we'll give you a little goodie in the form of a Bloodshot sampler or just a little holiday cheer when you pop in.
We'd like to have the donations in our mitts by Friday, December 20th so they can be distributed in a timely manner
Here are the general guidelines for stuffed animals.
PLEASE PAY ATTENTION AND DONATE ONLY ITEMS THAT FIT THE BILL.
THIS ISN'T A GARAGE SALE.
We are ONLY accepting stuffed animals. No toys, games, clothing or other items. Gotta stay focused...
May I suggest Value Village etc as a great source of high quality, low cost stuffs?
a) New or very gently used and in excellent, unsoiled, condition; if you wanna do a quick run through the steam cycle at home, that’d be great
b) Must be soft and cuddly, not stiff;
c) Not smaller than 6'' or bigger than 18'' tall (they can be a little taller if they are squishy-soft and can pack down);
d) No Beanie Babies;
e) Not animated or talking (battery operated);
f) No TV cartoon characters (i.e.: Sponge Bob, Sesame Street characters, Action Characters, etc.) Exceptions: soft classic Disney characters like Mickey & Minnie Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore; Snoopy, etc.
g) No sea animals, bugs, or reptiles; Who wants to hug one of those?
h) Holiday-styled animals with seasonal trimmings removed are OK (snip off Santa hats, Valentine hearts, etc.).