'Tis the season for giving. And for those partaking in various "Toys for Tatas" campaigns across America, that holiday sentiment goes both ways.
Adult establishments in states such as Arizona, Arkansas, Illinois and Florida are hosting their own "Toys for Tatas" efforts this holiday season, collecting toys to distribute to underprivileged children in exchange for some unusual incentives – men can get free lap dances, and women can win a free breast augmentation. The name "Toys for Tatas," seemingly a play on the charity organization Toys for Tots, was first brought to the public eye last year on "Saturday Night Live" when comedian Jimmy Fallon poked fun at a holiday toy drive taking place at a Chicago strip joint.
The gentleman's club Fallon mentioned in his 2011 skit was the Admiral Theatre, and for the third year in a row, it will host its Lap Dancing for the Needy Toy Drive. Beginning Friday and running through Dec. 22, patrons will get a free lap dance if they donate an unused, unwrapped toy. Having received some backlash from various organizations that opposed the way the gifts were collected, the Admiral distributes the donations anonymously to churches and youth organizations in Albany Park, according to marketing manager Tim Brown.
In Florida, Shady Nasty's, a gentleman's club in Key West, is also getting into the holiday spirit with its own "Toys for Tatas" initiative. Owner Stuart Puhdasso confirmed that from Dec. 15 until Christmas Eve, patrons who donate a toy valuing more than $20 would receive a complimentary lap dance and voucher for a free weeknight meal at its all-you-can-eat buffet.
But men aren't the only ones who can benefit from this holiday promotion. In Scottsdale, Ariz., women who donate a pair of toys to the "Toys for Tatas" drive at the Mint nightclub have the chance to win a free breast augmentation. The initiative is spearheaded by Nik Richie, founder and contributor to the controversial website The Dirty, to motivate his readers to donate. He said there has been an "overwhelming response" from women in Arizona and California. Richie confirmed that all the toys would go to the nonprofit charity Toys for Tots.
Patrons who donate a toy this month at Platinum Cabaret in Fayetteville, Ark., will be rewarded with a two-for-one lap dance for each toy brought in, according to club manager Erica Ponder. Toys donated here also go specifically to Toys for Tots, which is sponsored by the Marine Corps Reserve and distributes toys to underprivileged children every holiday season.
"As long as it's done in a legal manner, as long as people are bringing us new, unwrapped toys, we don't get into how they were gathered and what the process was," said John Staples, local coordinator for Toys for Tots.
Brian Murray, vice president of operations for the nonprofit Toys for Tots, said while the organization appreciated the help, it was doing its best to make sure there was no direct association between adult establishments and the children's charity.
"There are all kinds of generous people across the United States," Murray said. "They want to help. It's our job to accept their donation and help the less fortunate children in America."
In an effort to deflect any association between "Toys for Tatas" and Toys for Tots, Murray said Toys for Tots pickups for donations from adult establishments would be made when the businesses were closed to keep everything "low-key." If the establishment is looking for media attention and reporters happen to be there at the time of the scheduled toy pickup, the donation would not be accepted, he said.
"People do things for charities. Whether it's a Denny's Restaurant or adult club, they want to do something to help those less fortunate," Murray said. "We just have to be careful about how we market and advertise our name."