Community Raises $80,000 In Attempt To Save Local Toy Store

In just a few days, area residents and businesses have raised nearly $80,000 to save Once Upon a Toy.

In just a few days, area residents and businesses have raised nearly $80,000 to save Once Upon a Toy.

Just a week ago, it looked like an independent Illinois toy store would be going out of business after the bank chose to not renew the store’s business loan for another year. But online efforts to raise money by today’s deadline may have saved the store.

“We finally decided that we needed to tell the community,” the owner of Once Upon a Toy in Edwardsville, IL, tells KTVI-TV. “Give them an opportunity to use their gift certificates and just even a minute for us to say goodbye.”

But instead of a going-out-of-business last hurrah, the store witnessed an outpouring of support from local shoppers and businesses, some of which chose to donate 10% of yesterday’s sales receipts toward keeping Once Upon a Toy open.

The store needed to raise $76,000 by today in order to repay the bank in full. And according to the numbers on its CrowdTilt fundraising page, it’s already surpassed that mark and heading toward $80,000 with still a few hours to spare.

“This is a unique place” explained a customer who created the CrowdTilt page. “You can come in here and find things that you can’t find at most stores. And it’s not your iPad. It’s not your iPhone. To actually sit down and play, and use your imagination, and use your hands, and explore and learn while you’re doing it is really awesome, and you can do all of that here.”