Letters to The Editor: December 21-27, 2023


The Editor:

CAP’s Blaine/Birch Bay Community Toy Store welcomed parents from 120 families last week who came to shop for Christmas gifts for their children at drastically discounted prices. Those who needed additional support were provided with partial or full vouchers. This adjusting of the assistance level provided makes our program unique among otherwise similar programs.

Because of the amazing generosity of people in this community who donated over 750 toys and 124 gift cards as well as monetary donations, these parents were able to choose from a wonderful selection of high-quality gifts for their kids, which would otherwise have been out of their reach.

I wish you all could have seen the smiles on these parents’ faces and heard their words of heartfelt gratitude as they left with their bags of gifts. I’m sure there will be many more smiles on Christmas morning, too, as these 321 children open and enjoy the gifts their parents chose for them. Thanks to all the donors who helped shower these families with love and support! It truly means the world to them.

This year’s shopping proceeds, which totaled $3,734, will be shared with the Bridge Community Hope Center’s Emergency Assistance Fund, Valley Church Blaine Campus’ VC Essentials outreach to unhoused people in our area, and the Loads of Love program run by Christ Episcopal Church, which pays for laundry costs at the Blaine Washhouse two Mondays each month.

Through the work of these organizations, your donations to the Community Toy Store will have an impact on our neighbors in need throughout the year ahead. Thank you for making all this possible.

A huge thanks to my toy store leadership team, all our volunteers, and to Valley Church for the use of the Blaine campus facility. We also want to thank the Blaine High School culinary arts classes that baked and packaged a dozen Christmas cookies for each family to take home.

We couldn’t do this without all of you. This is truly a community-wide effort. It is an honor to be part of such a giving community.

Laura Vogee

Community Toy Store director



The Editor:

How lucky are we to live in a community that prioritizes providing activities and festivals that benefit our health and celebrate the wonderful place we live?

I have been attending exercise classes through Blaine-Birch Bay parks and recreation (you may also know it BBBPRD2) for some time now. The quality of the classes and instructors, offered at a price that makes them available to all in the community, is amazing.

However, I’ve only recently come to realize the extent to which parks and rec goes beyond exercise classes and is extremely involved in backing community-wide events.

From supporting the Wings Over Water festival to Blaine Youth Sports and so much in between, our whole community benefits from the great work they are doing. I have also been impressed with how much they are expanding their offerings to meet the diverse needs and interests of community members, keeping their finger on the pulse of what our community is looking for.

I know they are always looking for suggestions for new offerings. Keep up the great work, BBBPRD2!

Meaghan Doyle



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