In a difficult economic climate, members of a local church want to make Christmas merrier for children.
The sixth annual St. Nick’s Toy Resale will be conducted from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 7 at Visitation of the B.V.M. at 1127 McKinley Ave. in Johnstown’s 8th Ward.
“With the economic downturn in our local community and the local layoffs of the past year, this event is more important than ever,” said Cynde Smith of the 8th Ward,
Buyers should be aware that this is a toy sale only.
Approximately 70 tables on two floors of Visitation’s former elementary will display a variety of gently used toys. All toys are gently used or new, clean and in good working condition.
They are priced at garage sale prices mostly from 25 cents to $5.
The sale is being conducted in the former school’s gymnasium and cafeteria areas. Signs will be posted to help direct people to the sale.
“We have had to turn vendors away because we cannot hold anymore toys,” Smith said. “Everyone can afford to have great quality toys under their tree for very little expense.”
Any toys remaining after the sale will be donated to St. Vincent DePaul Society for distribution to the neediest families this Christmas season.
“We want these toys to go to families who need them and cannot afford the expense of buying new toys at this time of year,” Smith said.
Last year, the resale accounted for more than $6,000 worth of toys distributed throughout Johnstown and the surrounding area.
“People were carrying them out by the garbage bags full last year,” Smith said. “When someone can carry that amount out for around $210, it is a wonderful sight.”
Proceeds from the sale go to vendors except for a 10 percent surcharge by the church to cover the cost of lighting, heating and advertising.
Smith, along with Judy Lansberry, also of the 8th Ward, serve as coordinators of the sale.
“It is a great place for working families, single mothers and anyone struggling economically to buy great toys in wonderful condition just in time for the holidays,” Smith said. “This is a great community event to help those who need to stretch those dollars and get some bang for their buck during the holiday season.”
The toys are good condition with no broken or missing pieces.
“We ask vendors to bring batteries in order to demonstrate that those toys are in good working order,” Smith said.
Tom Lavis covers Features for the Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter.com/Tom LavisTD.
What: Sixth annual St. Nick’s Toy Resale.
Where: Visitation of the B.V.M. at 1127 McKinley Ave. in Johns-
town’s 8th Ward.
When: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 7.