Toys for Tats: Firefighters Team Up With St. Charles (MO) Tattoo Shop for Toy Drive

A donor gets a tattoo at the 2019 toys for tats event
Central County Fire & Rescue's Toys for Tats fundraiser is now in its 5th year,

Donors Receive Free Tattoos in Exchange for New Toy Donation for Local Foster Children

Dreaming of a new tattoo this holiday season? Central County Fire & Rescue (CCFR) has a fun and charitable way for you to make that dream a reality. Join CCFR Community Outreach in collecting toys for children in foster care this Christmas! The 5th Annual Toys-4-Tats event will be held on Saturday, December 4, 2021 in St. Charles, MO.

With a donation of a new, unwrapped toy worth at least $25 (with receipt), donors will receive a free tattoo, courtesy of Permanent Vacation Tattoo. Last year alone, the event raised over $10,000 in new toys for the Foster Adopt Support Team (FAST) of St. Charles County. FAST provides support for hundreds of families in foster care throughout St. Charles county every year.

“Providing toys for nearly 300 children in the foster care system in St. Charles county takes a village,” says Jennifer Philips, Vice President of FAST. “The Toys for Tats event ensures our kiddos have gifts under their trees on Christmas morning. We are beyond thankful for the community’s assistance in helping us fulfill that mission,” says Phillips.

Toys for Tats Fifth Year

Starting at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, Permanent Vacation Tattoo, in partnership with CCFR Community Outreach, will host the 5th annual Toys for Tats event at the St. Charles tattoo shop. As in past years, nearly 20 tattoo artists from across the country are volunteering their time to assist with the event, some coming from as far away as Kentucky. In 2020, in the height of the pandemic, the Toys for Tats event raised nearly $10,000 worth of toys for local children, and the event organizers are hoping to increase that number this year.

“I had been helping a friend in a neighboring state with a similar event in his tattoo shop,” says Joe Cumbee, owner of Permanent Vacation Tattoo. “I knew no one was doing anything like this locally, and when I saw what they were able to achieve there, I knew we could make a big difference here in our own community. Knowing that the toys are going to local foster children right here in our own community really just makes all the difference,” says Cumbee.

Off-duty CCFR firefighters will be providing a free barbeque meal for all donors and delivering the toys afterward. It’s a unique partnership born from a desire to make sure every child has a great Christmas. “Our firefighters are passionate about making a difference in our community,” says CCFR Deputy Chief and Public Information Officer, Jason Meinershagen. “Children in foster care have already experienced more trauma in their short lives than most adults will in their lifetime, and we just want to make sure they feel loved on Christmas morning. We’re confident our community will show up in force to support our most vulnerable members of the community this Christmas,” says Meinershagen.

2021 Details Announced

When: 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 4
Where: Permanent Vacation Tattoo (3130 West Clay St., St Charles, MO 63301)

Permanent Vacation Tattoo is located 3130 W. Clay St., St. Charles, MO 63301. For more information about the Toys for Tats event, visit www.facebook.com/permanentvacationtattoos.

In addition to receiving toy donations at the event on Dec 4, all CCFR firehouses will serve as collection points for people wishing to donate toys for FAST. Following is a list of CCFR firehouse locations:

  • Station #1 – 1 Timberbrook Drive, St. Peters, MO 63376
  • Station #2 – 109 McMenamy Road, St. Peters, MO 63376
  • Station #3 – 511 Willott Road, St. Peters, MO 63376
  • Station #4 – 1259 Cave Springs Blvd, St. Peters, MO 63376
  • Station #5 – 3421 Harry S. Truman Blvd, St. Charles, MO 63301
  • Station #6 – 1151 Jungs Station Road, St. Charles, MO 63303
  • Administrative Offices – 1220 Cave Springs Blvd, St. Peters, MO 63376

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