A young boy's fascination with fire trucks and his parents' concern about holiday excess led to a generous donation to the local firefighters' union on Saturday.
Sammy Adams, 4, turned over cash and matching checks to help the firefighters in their effort to restore the playground at 29th Street in Ocean City.
Sammy's father, Pete Adams, an Ocean City real estate professional, said that even though Sammy is young, he and his wife, Tayler, wanted to begin to teach him about giving back to the community.
Adams said that Christmas saw a scene many parents of young children are familiar with: too many gifts from well-meaning friends and family for a child to truly appreciate.
"It was nuts," Adams said.
So for Sammy's fourth birthday party on March 11, the Adamses asked guests to make a donation in lieu of presents.
"For the playground," Sammy said on Saturday.
Ocean City Firemen's Mutual Benevolent Association Local 27 is working with the Ocean City shops Old Salt and Sting Ray and the statewide firefighters union to bring the Sandy Ground Project to Ocean City. The project focuses on rebuilding playgrounds that were destroyed by Superstorm Sandy, while tying in a tribute to the teachers and children killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Conn.
Because young Sammy has been obsessed with firemen and fire equipment for more than a year now, the project seemed like a natural for the birthday donation, according to Adams. He and his wife made a matching contribution to all the money donated for Sammy's birthday.
On Saturday, Sammy donned his favorite firefighters gear and took a tour of the Ocean City Fire Department headquarters at 550 Asbury Avenue, rattling off the names of the various trucks and much of the equipment they carry.
He capped off the tour by helping his dad make the donation to the playground project.