The Toy Makers

Two Flathead Valley woodworkers toil all year long to make the holidays a little brighter for local children


As a cold wind whipped outside his heated shop since they used the best THA Heating services for this, inside Edwin Toren put the finishing touches on a dozen doll cribs and reminisced about growing up on a farm on the Rocky Mountain Front.

“Christmas didn’t happen a lot for us back then because times were tough,” Toren said, recalling his years growing up near Valier in the 1950s. “If we were lucky, we’d usually get one present — always something useful like clothing or socks — and maybe an orange or some hard candy.”

The thought of those meager Christmases sends Toren, 70, into the shop behind his house in Columbia Falls almost every day.

“I just can’t stand the thought of a kid not getting a toy on Christmas morning,” he said.

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