MCFRS News Release

2006 Toys For Tots Opening Ceremony at DC's Union Station

Fire Chiefs from around the region will join Ambassador Knut Vollebaek, of Norway, District Of Columbia Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, District of Columbia Fire Chief Adrian Thompson, District of Columbia Police Chief Charles Ramsey and Major Miller, U.S. Marines, Commander, Navy/Marine Corps Reserve Training Center - Anacostia at the Opening Ceremony for the 2006 ‘Toys For Tots’. The region’s annual “kick-off” event for ‘Toys for Tots’ will take place on Tuesday, November 21, 2006 at 9 a.m. at Union Station, Washington, D.C. There will be a musical prelude performed by the Marine Corps Brass Quintet, as well as special children’s activities.

Dozens of children have been invited as guests of the Norwegian Embassy, District of Columbia and will be on-hand for the opening of the Union Station holiday model train exhibit and at the same time be part of the U.S Marines 2006 ‘Toys For Tots’ “kick-off” celebration. In addition to officials from corporate sponsors SunTrust Bank and Interstate Van Lines, other area Fire Chiefs scheduled to attend are: Jim Schwartz, Arlington; Gary Mesaris, Alexandria; Mike Neuhard, Fairfax County; Tom Carr, Montgomery County; Joe Pozzo, Loudon County; Larry Sedgwick, Prince George’s County and Mary Beth Michos, Prince William County.

A special guest from the North Pole is expected to drop by to be assisted by Santa’s helper’s or in this case the U.S. Marines. Congresswoman Norton is expected to read a Christmas story and Ambassador Vollebaek will distribute special Norwegian made hats to the children. As part of the pre-ceremony activities Norwegian Actor Rolf Stang will be involved in a story telling activity while children will also have an opportunity to learn from the conductors how the model train was built, maintained and operated.

Again this year fire departments throughout the National Capital Region will be participating in the annual ‘Toys for Tots’ toy drive sponsored by the United States Marines. Working together we are sure to make many area family’s holiday season a lot brighter. All local area fire stations will be designated toy “drop-off” sites.

These efforts provide a tangible sign of hope to economically disadvantaged children during the holidays. As an example, the ‘Toys for Tots’ campaign is one of the nation's flagship Christmas charitable causes and the only charitable endeavor within the Department of Defense that reaches outside the military to give something back to the communities from which the nation draws the young men and women who serve in the armed forces of the United States of America.

This charitable endeavor has made U.S. Marines the unchallenged leaders in looking after needy children during the holiday season, particularly at Christmas. The National Capital Region’s local fire and rescue service looks to support those efforts.
Again, 2006 ‘Toys For Tots’ Opening Ceremony at DC Union Station at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, November 21, 2006.