Since 2016, Bowling Green State University Parking Services has fallen into the season of giving by offering students fresh starts by accepting toy donations in lieu of parking tickets.
Any citations issued between now and finals week will be dismissed by the university’s parking services as part of Toys for Tickets, a toy drive initiative.
“We wanted to give back to the community. Other people have done it and thought we could do it too,” a spokesperson for BGSU Parking Services Aileen Berry said.
Parking Services has collected 25 toys for the Wood County Children’s Protective Services and the Wood County Children’s Resource Center since the toy drive started on Oct. 1.
“If you don’t want to give your money to Parking Services, you can give it to kids instead,” USG Chief Administrator Kaylee Kahl said.
Toys can be dropped off at their office on 1 College Park, in a new, unwrapped condition. Berry said students must also have their receipts and the toys need to be within a dollar amount of the ticket cost.
But the Toys for Tickets drive will not cover citations issued for forged or illegal permits and those parking in a handicap area.
“The good thing about this is that, if you have a lot of tickets, this helps them start fresh,” Berry said. “If you have multiple tickets, getting some or even one taken away helps you not get a boot on your car.”
There’s not a limit on how many toys can be donated per person, and even people who don’t have tickets can donate as well.
The program has happened every year since 2016, but took a pause during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021. However, Berry said over 300 toys were donated each year in 2018 and 2019.
Toys will start being picked up on Dec. 5, but the program will accept toys throughout the last day of finals or until an equivalent of $5,000 is raised.
“It’s actually gone over in the past,” Berry said. “We’ve easily reached it.”