For the 18th holiday season, members of the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce joined with police detective Anthony Guzzello to collect toys for children and food for those in need in Port Washington. The program is called “Make A Child Smile.” Twenty-seven Chamber of Commerce member businesses offered to be drop-off locations for the toys and donations.
“The response from the community has been overwhelming. Over 500 toys plus food and monetary donations were collected to brighten the holidays for the less fortunate children in Port Washington,” said Guzzello, who created this program 26 years ago with the Port Washington Police Benevolent Association and the Port Washington Fire Department. Local residents and the Port Washington Yacht Club asked guests bring toys to their holiday parties and Sousa School collected a truckload of toys to donate to the cause. This year the effort was supported by Eagle Scout candidate Will Simone, who collected toys from generous members of Troop 71.
Chamber co-president Mitch Schwartz said he was very proud of the support given to the toy and food drive by Port’s businesses and residents. Some local storeowners took toys off their shelves to add to the donations brought in by Port residents. Schwartz pledged the participation of the chamber again next year, saying every child deserves some special happiness during the holidays.