Parkrose volunteers mount giant toy drive

Here’s how to help needy kids, right here in outer East Portland: Be part of the The Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway this year …

Amy Nichols is one of the many volunteers collecting, sorting, and organizing toys and clothing for this year’s Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

After the 2020 Parkrose Stepping Up season had concluded with their Thanksgiving Food & Clothing Pantry, and the organizer of those events, Terry Murphy, came up with another idea: Gathering gifts, and hosting a “Free Holiday Toy Store” in his driveway.

>> To read about last year’s event, CLICK HERE.

“It’s true, after the Parkrose Stepping Up events in late 2020, I felt we could still do more for people that year, with so many folks losing work, and the economy shutting down,” Murphy recalled, while sorting toy donations for this year’s toy giveaway event – coming up on December 19.

Toy drive organizer Terry Murphy says he’s encouraged to see families bringing in toys, books, crafts, and clothing to donate, every collection day.

“COVID-19 coronavirus fears were still so high, I could not find a willing partner to host the event – so I decided to do it myself at my home, and it worked out just great!” Murphy told East Portland News. “We had volunteers come and go throughout the day, who help keep stocked the tables, under canopies, which were set up on my 40-foot driveway. We gave away hundreds of toys – which made for a lot of happy people that day!”

New event, new partners
After the successful conclusion of his Parkrose Marketplace project, Murphy set out to create a new, and even grander event – which he calls The Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway.

“I guess I like creating platforms that the whole community can be a part of,” mused Murphy. “When we do something together, we leverage a strength that we don’t have as individuals, and we can achieve results that none of us could achieve alone!”

With that, he announced that the Parkrose Business Association (PBA) is his partner for The Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway.

In the doorway of Argay Square is PBA President William Keller CPA, ready to accept donations.

“With COVID-19 shutting so much down, especially in the business community, we’ve chosen to help with this toy drive, as the PBA is reactivating itself in the community,” explained PBA President William Keller, CPA. “We believe that this is a great project that will directly help our neighbors – right here, in the northern area of outer East Portland, which our Neighborhood Business District serves.”

Murphy commended Norwest Engineering, the company donating the office space in Argay Square, as well as the PBA for providing support. “They stepped right up and offered their support for this Toy Drive; that is what ‘community’ is about.

“I want to see this community be what I know it is: In a word, generous,” observed Murphy.

All of the volunteers behind The Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway say they hope for many donations this year, including great books, like these!

Now, through December 17
Be part of The Fantastical Parkrose Toy Drive & Giveaway – From 3 until 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. You can help out by dropping off new unwrapped toys, games, art supplies, musical instruments, books, and winter clothing. They are accepting “like new”, but used, items – if they are squeaky clean, complete, and in working order.

These items will be given away on Sunday, December 19, from noon until 4 p.m.

Take your items to Norwest Engineering’s offices (you can see their sign from the street) in Argay Square, located at 4110 NE 122nd Avenue, Ste. 207, 97230. For questions, or to have your donation picked up, contact the organizer, Terry Murphy, at

© 2021 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™



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