NYRA Helps Promote Toys for Tots at Aqueduct

The New York Racing Association (NYRA) will host its annual “Toys for Tots” weekend of giving Saturday, Dec. 3 and Sunday, Dec. 4 at Aqueduct Racetrack. The weekend of giving is being offered in partnership with the Marine Corps Reserve “Toys for Tots” Foundation, with support from thoroughbred owner Harold Lerner and the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NYTHA).

The Toys for Tots program collects and distributes new, unwrapped toys to local children in need each holiday season. Donation boxes will be located at Aqueduct’s main clubhouse entrance, as well as at the Turf and Field entrance.

“The New York Racing Association is proud to support the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots Foundation during this season of giving,” stated Lynn LaRocca, New York Racing Association Senior Vice President and Chief Experience Officer. “We encourage all horseplayers and fans to join us at Aqueduct on December 3 and 4, and to bring an unwrapped toy in support of this important community effort.”

Two races on Saturday’s Aqueduct card will be named for supporting organizations. This includes a race honoring the “Toys for Tots” Foundation and a race honoring the United States Marine Corps Reserve. Following the conclusion of each race, representatives from these participating organizations will join NYRA officials in the Aqueduct winner’s circle for a special presentation.

“New York’s horsemen are honored to be part of this holiday tradition,” said NYTHA President Rick Violette Jr. “There is no better way to get into the spirit of the season than by helping the Marine Corps’ ‘Toys for Tots’ Foundation deliver smiles to the children in our community.”

“I really believe anything you can do for kids that unfortunately get left behind in the holiday season; it’s a wonderful thing to put a smile on their face,” said Lerner. “I’ve been committed to this program for a number of years after being initially introduced to it by my trainer Gary Contessa, who has been contributing part of his earnings to “Toys for Tots” on a Saturday in the past for years and thankful to a part of it again.”

For more information on the United States Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation, visit www.toysfortots.org.

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