It’s just one of the meaningful ways to give back to the community. Local drop-off locations are now ready to take Toys-For-Tots donations, and for the last 10 years, Mount Dora Fire Department has been collecting among the most toy donations in Lake County.
Toys-for-Tots was founded by a United States Marine Corps major in 1947 to collect and distribute toys to underprivileged children in time for Christmas. The effort has since grown to include over 700 communities across the U.S.
Thanks to the generous donations from local residents, Mount Dora Fire Department collects thousand of toys, and no child in the Lake County Toys-For-Tots Program has gone without receiving multiple toys.
Residents can bring brand new and unwrapped toys to the following donation drop-off sites:
Mount Dora Fire Station 34, 1300 N. Donnelly St. Visitor parking in front
Mount Dora Police Department, 1300 N. Donnelly St. Open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
Mount Dora City Hall, 510 N. Baker St. Open 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday - Friday
Barrel of Books & Games, 128 W. 4th Ave., Mount Dora
Mount Dora Marina & Boating Center, 148 Charles Ave., Mount Dora.
In order to distribute the toys by Christmas, the final day of toy collection is Friday, December 8th. Families wishing to apply for the Toys-For-Tots program should contact the Florida Department of Children and Families at 1300 N. Duncan Drive in Tavares or call 352-742-6330. The deadline to apply is November 22.
What could be more welcoming than sipping iced tea on Mount Dora’s most notable porch? That’s what visitors will find out when the new Mount Dora Welcome Center opens in downtown’s picturesque Donnelly House later this month. Friends of the Donnelly House, a non-profit that assists with funding the upkeep of the large Victorian landmark, plans to open to the public and share maps and local information with visitors while extending Southern hospitality. Guests will be offered complimentary iced tea and can come inside the Donnelly House or just sit on its grand porch for a spell. Area merchants will be able to provide coupons to be distributed at the center without a fee or membership.
The yellow and white Victorian home, dubbed "The Gingerbread House," was built in 1893 and is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
Mount Dora Welcome Center will be staffed with local volunteers and members of the nonprofit group. The plan is to open Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning sometime in November. The center is located at 535 N. Donnelly Street. Anyone interested in volunteering can email DonnellyVolunteer@gmail.com. Read more about the Donnelly House.