Local business Cherry Bomb Toys was the victim of a break and enter early Friday morning and the store’s donation box was stolen.
The donation box supports the National Toy Museum, an installation on the upper floor of the store that houses a collection of rare and collectible toys.
“The money is to help the museum stay alive and be expanded,” said Cherry Bomb Toys owner B. Woodward, who started the museum in 2016.
Woodward says two individuals gained access to the store by breaking a window in the back door. “There’s an alley that’s behind – that’s how they got in,” said Woodward. “We’ve always had issues in the alley.”
The store, located on Broad St., backs onto what’s now an empty lot after a suspicious fire gutted the heritage Plaza Hotel in May.
“With the hotel being gone, what’s left of the lot is all boarded up,” Woodward says. “We have constant problems with people doing drugs back there, and situations like this happen.”
Woodward says that he believes more police patrols are needed and is calling on city officials to provide greater funding. “We shouldn’t be cutting funding to the police, we should be giving more money to the police.”
Despite the issues he is facing, however, Woodward says he has no intention of closing his business or moving. “We love downtown so much,” Woodward says. “We want downtown to be vibrant. It needs some attention, some focus in the right ways.”