Thousands Gather for 33rd Annual Toys Party


This year’s event raised more than $275,000 to benefit SAGE, and collected over 5,000 toys for children in need
[New York, NY] – Over 2,500 attendees — including former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, CNN’s Don Lemon, and actresses Lorraine Bracco and Mariska Hargitay – packed Chelsea Piers on December 9 for the 33rd Annual Toys Party, to mix and mingle and celebrate the holiday season all while benefiting LGBT elders and children in need.

This year’s successful event raised more than $275,000 to benefit LGBT elders, and collected over 5,000 toys for distribution to numerous LGBT-friendly children’s charities. Over a span of three decades, the Toys Party, founded by Robby Browne, has collected more than 150,000 toys for children, and raised over $3.5 million for SAGE.

“Robby has been an amazing host for so long. He’s one of the truly great and most generous New Yorkers I’ve ever known,” said former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg. “This annual party really is so special, spreading a little holiday cheer to those who really could use it, donating to charities who support everyone in this community.”

The event, co-hosted by Chris Kann and David Tufts, has become one of New York’s most recognized traditions, making a major impact on the lives of LGBT older people and children in need during the holidays.

“What cannot be quantified here was how many friendships were made, and how much good cheer was generated along the way,” said CNN’s Don Lemon. “I want to take this moment to thank Robby Browne, on behalf of our community, for creating something wonderful and, dare I say, historic and iconic.”

All proceeds and ticket sales support SAGE’s work with and on behalf of LGBT older people across the country.

Toys from the event were distributed to the following charities: 9th Police Precinct Community Center, Camp Felix, Ali Forney Center, Brooklyn ACE Integration Head Start, God’s Love We Deliver, Grace Baptist/Faith Mission, The Iris House and UEW Jericho Project/Brick Church.

“This time of year, it’s more important than ever to band together and support our larger LGBT family — elders and children — who need our help the most,” said SAGE CEO Michael Adams. “For decades, the Toys Party has been a beautiful tradition of our city’s LGBT community, ringing in the holidays while making a huge difference for LGBT older people and children in need. We’re so grateful to Robby, Chris, and David for creating such a uniquely festive evening, and to everybody who came out to have fun while making a difference during the holiday season.”

SAGE CEO Michael Adams, former New York State Superintendent of Banks Diana Taylor, Toys Party Founder and Co-Host Robby Browne, former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, CNN host Don Lemon, NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson, Toys Party Co-Hosts Chris Kann and David Tufts. Photo credit: Karen Seifert

Photo credit: Anna Wahrman of SAGE

For more photos from the event, visit https://www.sageusa.org/2018toyspics.

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SAGE is the country’s largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) older people. Founded in 1978 and headquartered in New York City, SAGE is a national organization that offers supportive services and consumer resources to LGBT older people and their caregivers. SAGE also advocates for public policy changes that address the needs of LGBT elders, provides education and technical assistance for aging providers and LGBT community organizations through its National Resource Center on LGBT Aging, and cultural competency training through SAGECare. With staff located across the country, SAGE also coordinates SAGENet, a growing network of affiliates in the United States.

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