ST. CHARLES, Mo. – One St. Charles tattoo shop has made it a holiday tradition to collect toys and give back to the community.
For the past five years, Permanent Vacation Tattoo has held it’s Toys-4-Tats event to collect toy donations. Anyone who brought a toy valued at $50 or more and a receipt could wait in line for a free tattoo.
“For me, it’s a service I can provide back, and a way to give back to our community, and to keep the toys here in the St. Charles and St. Louis area,” said Joe Cumbee, owner of Permanent Vacation Tattoo.
Crews from the Central County Fire rescue gathered Saturday to support the event and spread the holiday cheer
“We were just fortunate enough, to have a relationship with him already, and come alongside to provide the barbeque and hot chocolate for the people that are standing in line. They’ve been around the building since 3:30 this morning,” said Jason Meinershagen, Central County Fire Rescue’s deputy chief community relations.
The Foster Adoption Support Team (F.A.S.T.) collected toy donations and will help with the next steps of distributing them to the community.
“As we’re here, we add toys to our website. So all the toys that are coming, our families get to shop on that website, all for free to them. And then later on this week, we have an event where they can come and pick up their toys,” said Jennifer Phillips, vice president of F.A.S.T.
Smiling faces all around, this event is about giving and coming together as one.
“My favorite part of the event is seeing the people being out here with the people, and having the giving attitude and the cheerful spirit, that people want to make a difference in their community, I just really enjoy knowing we’re putting smiles on kids’ faces on Christmas morning,” said Meinershagen.
“People giving and the ability for us to use our gifts and give back to those around us and those less fortunate than us,” said Cumbee on what he enjoys about Toys-4-Tats.