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Photo courtesy of Sunnyside's Boulevard Bars
Photo courtesy of Sunnyside's Boulevard Bars
The fourth annual Santathon will take place in Sunnyside to collect toys for neighborhood children.

One Sunnyside organization is looking to make the holidays brighter for neighborhood kids.

Sunnyside’s Boulevard Bars will hold its fourth annual Santathon, a festive pub crawl that acts as a toy drive. This year, the crawl will take place on Dec. 5 at 3 p.m. and nine bars will participate. A $10 wristband will allow patrons to access the food and drink specials at each bar.

Melissa Navia, spokesperson for the organization, said the bar owners got together in 2012 to “elevate our community by utilizing our joint efforts to organize year-round events that bring people together and give back to the community.”

The event has raised more than $20,000 for local organizations in the past three years through wristband sales, monetary donations and toy donations. Each participating bar will also be collecting new and unwrapped toys until Dec. 21. According to Navia, 600 people are expected to attend this year’s event.

The toys will be donated to local organizations. St. Raphael’s Church in Sunnyside, St. Teresa’s Church in Woodside, the 108th Precinct, and the Hour Children Center in LIC are some of the organizations that have received support in the past.

Participating bars include Arriba ArribaThe Courtyard Ale HouseMaggie Mae’sBar 43Molly Blooms, The Gaslight, McGuinness’s SaloonSideTracks and Jack’s Fire Dept.

“We came together as a group three years ago to highlight the dynamic neighborhood we have here through events that bring people together and give back to the community,” said Pat Burke, owner of The Courtyard Ale House. “Santathon was our first event and now it kicks off the holiday season for us in Sunnyside. We’re looking forward to celebrating on Saturday, raising money for local organizations that need it most this time of year, and kicking off our Christmas toy drive.”

If any organization or toy drive is interested in partnering with Sunnyside’s Boulevard Bars, contact BlvdBars@gmail.com.

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