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Teddy Bear Brunch will benefit Salvation Army’s toy drive

Date: 11/15/2011

SPRINGFIELD — While adults have many elegant holiday events and galas to attend during the holiday season, kids under twelve generally don’t have many options when it comes to fancy gatherings. That will change on Dec. 11, when, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Max’s Tavern Teddy Bear Brunch will take place in the MassMutual Room at the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

This one-and-only lavish affair for kids and families will feature a sumptuous breakfast buffet and serve a very special purpose: to help the Greater Springfield Salvation Army make the holidays happier for area children in need. Children planning to attend are being asked to bring a new, unwrapped toy to be donated to the Salvation Army, which will distribute them in time for the holidays.

The Max’s Tavern brunch selection will include an omelet station; waffles, bagels, scones, mini Danish pastries, and mini muffins; special “Rainbow Bread”; petite peanut butter and jelly sandwiches; Virginia baked ham; scrambled eggs; hash browns; field green salad; pasta; and a juice, coffee and tea station.

Children will also be treated to a magnificent Candy Buffet, and will receive a special Max’s Tavern Teddy Bear to keep. The fun will include face painting and a holiday craft area, and an opportunity for children and families to have their pictures taken with the real “Max Bear.”

“We are honored to help the Salvation Army raise awareness about their unflagging work year-round, and their special efforts to help children during the holiday season,” AnnMarie Harding, public relations director and event planner for Max’s Tavern, said. “With this tough economy and the devastating year we’ve had with weather, the Teddy Bear Brunch is an excellent way to educate younger children about the importance of giving back to the community.”

Major Thomas Perks, commanding officer of the Greater Springfield Salvation Army, said “It is wonderful to be included in this type of new event, and to see children and families not only having a great time together, but also giving to those who really need help this season,”

He went on to note that “giving back to the community has to start at a young age and we are flattered that Max’s Tavern thought of us as the beneficiary of the new toys children will be donating at the Teddy Bear Brunch.

Tickets for the all-inclusive event are $25 for children under 13, and $30 for adults. Family tables can be reserved. Tickets can be purchased at Max’s Tavern in the Basketball Hall of Fame, located at 1000 Hall of Fame Ave., or online at . For more information about the Teddy Bear Brunch, please contact AnnMarie Harding at 746-MAXX (6299) or

At the time of the event, the Salvation Army will be in the midst of their Annual Red Kettle Campaign. The signature fund-raising initiative for more than a century, this year’s campaign promises to make donating easier with the aid of a Quick Response Code (QR code) on all kettle signage. Area residents with iPhones, Androids, or BlackBerry Smartphones can simply swipe the code to be taken to the donation page on the Salvation Army website. The Greater Springfield Salvation Army hopes that use of the QR code will help them fulfill their ongoing mission to serve thousands of local families in need. Last year, the nonprofit organization, which serves all of Hampden County, raised funds that provided more than 5,000 families with assistance during the holiday season. This year, the Salvation Army is anticipating that there will be more residents in need.

A kettle will be on location at the Teddy Bear Brunch for monetary donations to support the vitally important Salvation Army programs.

The Salvation Army serves approximately 30,000 families in Greater Springfield each year with a wide range of programs, including emergency services; Coats for Kids; Toy for Joy; the Good Neighbor Energy Fund; tutoring, literacy, and music programs; the Family Reading Program; teen violence and gang prevention programs; and much more. Monetary donations can be made in the form of a check made out to the Salvation Army, P.O. Box 971, Springfield, MA 01105. Please indicate that the donation is for the Kettle Fund. For more information about the Salvation Army, please call Major Tom Perks at 733-1518.

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