Sparta boy plays it forward for Tilly’s Kids

Youth. A Sparta youth will play cello at The Sparta Hardware store this holiday season to raise funds for Tilly's Kids.

02 Nov 2019 | 12:06

Rowan Mendel is 12 years old and a 7th grader at Sparta Middle School. He is hoping his love for music and his Cello will nudge shoppers into Holiday spirit of giving. Rowan played Holiday music at The Sparta Hardware Store during the weekends between Thanksgiving and Christmas last year and raised $700.

He volunteers for a program called “Christmas in the City” Tilly’s Kids. For the last 9 years his family has collected and donated to this program.

“It makes me feel good, to give back to young kids in need," he said. "From September until December we are collecting new hats, gloves, books, stuffed animals, Playdoh, hot wheels and sports balls to give to a school in Newark.

“By sharing my music with the customers, I hope to spread the joy of the holiday season and help those who have less.”

Rowan started playing the Cello in the 4th grade. He is a member of the Sparta Middle School Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra, and also plays for the Sussex County Youth Orchestra ( SCYO). He toured with SCYO this past summer in England and France.

He will "play it forward" at The Hardware Store Saturdays before Christmas.

Donation drop off at The Hardware Store 182 Woodport Road Sparta, NJ. (Cash donations are accepted).