At ‘Party with a Purpose’ toy drive event in Mt. Airy, thoughts turn to Sandy Hook Elementary

Close to 100 residents entered 7165 Lounge in Mt. Airy on Friday with a toy or cash donation in hand as part of a special holiday event.

‘Party with a Purpose,’ organized by Eighth District City Councilwoman Cindy Bass, invited neighbors to welcome the weekend with a dose of dancing eating, mingling and goodwill.

The event, held for the first time, was specially created to help make sure that children in shelters throughout the Eighth District received gifts for the holidays.

After a night of full of dancing, Bass took time to address her guests.

She spent the initial moments thanking everyone for attending, but then turned to the tragic shooting that unfolded inside an elementary school in Newtown, Conn. just hours before the event.

The party’s underlying focus on children resonated.

“My husband and I were in D.C. when we heard the news,” said Bass of the violent incident which left 26 people dead, 20 of which were children. “We still have a lot of work to do after what happened today in Connecticut.”

“This just gives us more of a reason to hold our children tighter. Not just our own children, but all children,” added Bass.

By the end of the night, a few hundred dollars in donations were raised and over one hundred toys – including dolls, action figures, make up kits, school supplies, and puzzles – were collected.

In conjunction with Mt. Airy USA, a community development corporation, Bass plans to distribute the toys and donations before Christmas arrives next Tuesday.

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