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On the Coast Magazine

A Season of Giving

11/01/2016 11:06PM ● Published by Nancy Babin

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With the holiday season rapidly approaching, most people are looking forward to spending time with family and friends and enjoying the traditions of the holidays - one of which is of course gift-giving! Another of the great traditions of the holiday season is to help provide for others in need, and there are many ways to do so.

One group of friends carries out this tradition in an exceptionally meaningful way – by honoring and carrying forward the generosity of their dear friend who passed away a few years ago, Gretchen McDowell. Tamela Butler, Cindy McGee, Amanda Belcher and Mike Dahnke were all loving friends of Gretchen’s and have chosen to continue to support the underprivileged youth in their communities in the same way Gretchen did – by hosting a toy drive during the holiday season.  According to Tamela, the friends “…wanted to do something to continue Gretchen’s tradition of holding a toy and bike drive as a way to honor her and her desire to help others.”

The 3rd Annual Silver Sleigh Toy Drive in Memory of Gretchen McDowell will be held on her birthday, December 11, 2016. This year the event will again be at the Hog’s Breath Saloon in Destin (541 Harbor Blvd.) from 2:00 – 5:00 pm. For the second year, the Silver Sleigh Toy Drive benefits Kidz4Kidz Florida, a charitable organization that serves local underprivileged children to help them enjoy fun, enriching extracurricular activities that they would not otherwise be able to enjoy. All donations of toys, cash, and particularly bikes (a focus of Gretchen’s) will be collected and distributed to children in need throughout Walton and Okaloosa counties. 

The partnership of the Silver Sleigh Toy Drive and Kidz4Kidz Florida embraces the true spirit of the holiday season in mutual support of our local underserved youth. Last year over 40 bicycles and helmets, hundreds of toys and over $1,000 were raised, and with your help they can reach even more children this year! Come participate in a wonderful event with your donations of toys, bikes or a monetary donation by contributing to the Silver Sleigh Toy Drive at the Hog’s Breath Saloon in Destin on December 11, 2016! 

For more information on Kidz4Kidz Florida, please visit www.k4kfl.org.

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Community Maya Sherwood Luke Sherwood Kidz4Kidz Gretchen McDowell Hogsbreath Saloon
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