City waiter saves tips for 'Big Brother' gifts
Tony Bloxsidge is trying to reach an ambitious goal to help as many little brothers and sisters as he can.
Bloxsidge works part-time at Woodstock's Boston Pizza and has been saving all of his tips since Oct. 1. He is putting that money -- about half of his initial goal of $5,000 -- towards gifts for unmatched little brothers and little sisters who will attend a Christmas party at the restaurant on Dec. 20.
Today is the last shift he'll be putting aside tips, given his plans on shopping for the gifts over this weekend.
"I wanted to do something to help out some organization, and Big Brothers-Big Sisters came to mind," Bloxsidge said.
A former big brother whose schedule no longer allows the time to be part of a match, his previous experiences with the organization left him with a level of comfort with this organization. He explained he's helped an individual family with a similar tip-saving campaign in the past but wanted to go further this year.
Between 70 and 80 children are currently on the waiting list to be matched with a big sibling by Big Brothers-Big Sisters of Woodstock and District, executive director Diane Hatfield said. They are brought together on a regular basis to participate in activities with Big Brothers-Big Sisters staff and volunteers and the Boston Pizza party will be one of their holiday events this year.
"We are very fortunate Tony chose to help us this way," Hatfield said. "We will give him the wish lists tonight."
Bloxsidge said people at the restaurant have been supportive of his goal through tips, dress-down days for wait staff and donations. The restaurant will be closed to the public that Sunday morning so the kids can have their festivities, participate in some activities and also meet the big red elf himself.
Bloxsidge's last tip-collecting shift is afternoon to close today.