Bronx Zoo, Diaz Jr. hold holiday toy and food drive

The Bronx Zoo kicked off the holiday season with a call for toys and food for children in need, enlarging its mission to include helping the community that supports the institution throughout the year.

The zoo kicked off its holiday toy drive held in conjunction with Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.’s’ office, and its food drive in partnership with City Harvest, with a visit from a group of schoolchildren from P.S. 205, Deputy Borough President Aurelia Greene, and Bronx Chamber of Commerce CEO Lenny Caro on Wednesday, November 16.

The group gathered to drop the first batch of toys into a drop box for the ceremonial start to the holiday season. The box was in front of the museum’s Amazing Amphibians exhibit in the Zoo Center.

“The Wildlife Conservation Society is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the borough presidents, the Bronx Chamber of Commerce, Bronx Toys, and City Harvest to give back to communities that have never wavered in their support of WCS and our zoos and aquariums,” said John Calvelli, WCS executive vice president of public affairs. “The toy drives and the food drive are truly worthy causes. We are proud to play a role in making the holidays more enjoyable for families in need of a helping hand.”

Through the end of December, the Bronx Zoo, as well as the WCS’s other facilities in Brooklyn and Queens, will be accepting donations of new, unwrapped toys to designated drop-off points around the zoo. They will also be accepting some canned fruits and vegetables, jars of peanut butter, and packaged macaroni and cheese and hot and cold cereals.

Caro pledged 1,000 toys from Bronx Toys, a Chamber member, and that donation is part of a 10,000 toys that the Chamber and Bronx Toys will be distributing around the borough in what is the largest toy donation in recent memory, Caro said.

“This is our third year participating in this drive with the Bronx Zoo, and we

Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at or by phone at (718) 742-3393

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