MOGADORE, Ohio — Goodyear and the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve are teaming up to help lift spirits this Christmas season by collecting toys and gifts for the Toys for Tots program.
The tire maker will host toy drives at its airship bases in Florida and Ohio. Toy collections will be held at Goodyear Auto Service Centers and Just Tires stores located near Goodyear's airship bases in Ohio, Florida and California. Those who make donations will be entered in a drawing for a blimp ride.
New toys in original packaging will be accepted, and monetary donations also may be made.
Ohio visitors can drive through the Wingfoot Lake blimp hangar between 2 and 9 p.m. on Dec. 13, 14 and 15 to make donations and get an up-close look at the blimp. The hangar is located at 841 Wingfoot Lake Road in Mogadore..
In lieu of collecting donations at its airship base in California, the blimp crew will participate in volunteer efforts with Toys for Tots.
Goodyear Auto Service Centers and Just Tire locations in Akron, Cuyahoga Falls, Fairlawn, North Canton and Wadsworth, Ohio, will host public toy drive events Dec. 1-14.
In Florida, stores in Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood and Pembroke Pines will accept donations from Dec. 1-14.
Stores in California that will accept donations for Toys for Tots are located in: Alhambra, Bellflower, Carson, Culver City, Glendale, Hollywood, La Canada, La Crescenta, Los Angeles, Maywood, Monterey Park, North Hollywood, Reseda, San Fernando, Sherman Oaks, Torrance, Panorama City and Venice. Donations can be dropped off Dec. 1-14.
Since Goodyear and the Marines first joined forces for the Toys for Tots campaign in 2010, more than $350,000 and 130,000 toys have been collected.
"We are very pleased to welcome Goodyear as a National Corporate Sponsor of the 2019 Marine Toys for Tots Campaign," said retired Marine Colonel Ted Silvester, vice president of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation. "Their community service goals certainly align with those the Marine Corps has promoted for over 71 years through our Toys for Tots Program. With their generous support, we will be able to fulfill the Christmas holiday dreams of thousands of less fortunate children who otherwise might be forgotten."
Goodyear first used its blimps to spread Christmas cheer when, in 1927, it nicknamed one of its blimps the "Santa Claus Express."
Since then, the company has invested in volunteer efforts and programs that work to create stronger communities. The Toys for Tots partnership is one example.
"All of us at Goodyear are pleased to provide this annual opportunity for visitors to get unique access to the Goodyear Blimp," said Laura Duda, senior vice president, Global Communications. "Leveraging both our world-famous airships and our retail stores to help the U.S. Marines provide joy to children in need is a perfect fit with our dedication to the community and the spirit of the holiday season."