CEDAR CITY — The miracle of The Happy Factory will be on display Saturday for the public to come and see how nearly two million toys have been produced and distributed free around the world to children in need.
The open house will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at The Happy Factory’s headquarters and shop located at 896 N. 2175 West, Cedar City.
Volunteers will offer free tours highlighting the various steps to making the hardwood toys, from tracing and cutting out the wood to sanding, oiling and “wheeling.” At the end of the tour, visitors can have a snack, receive a free toy car and learn about volunteering or donating to The Happy Factory if they wish.
“The purpose of the open house is really three-fold,” said Donna Cooley, who founded The Happy Factory with her husband, Charles Cooley, in 1995. “We mainly want everybody in the community to visit and see firsthand what we do here. Then, if they would like, they can learn more about volunteering or donating to the Factory. We always need more volunteers, and we always need more financial resources.”
The Happy Factory is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that operates with no paid employees. Also, many of the supplies to build the toys are donated.
However, it still takes about 50 cents to make each toy; this pays for equipment, maintenance and items such as saw blades, sandpaper, and wheels and axles for the toy cars.
Various donation levels are available, with larger donations eligible for a thank-you gift of a wooden toy – from cars to stools to steam shovels. Donations are not required for the open house, but any amount would be appreciated.
Information about volunteering will be available. The Happy Factory has an ongoing need for volunteers. From office and management help to gluing, tracing, cutting, sanding, routing, oiling and wheeling, there is something for everyone.
The people associated with The Happy Factory understand that there are over 500 million children living in poverty in the world, and that many of them have never had a toy. But they believe in The Happy Factory’s motto: “We may not be able to make a toy for every child in the world that needs one – but we’re going to try.”
“The spirit of The Happy Factory is infectious,” Cooley said. “Come visit us and see why.”
- What: The Happy Factory open house.
- When: Saturday, Oct. 3, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
- Where: 896 N. 2175 West, Cedar City.
- Additional details: Call 435-586-8352 or visit The Happy Factory website.