Actor Alec Baldwin as Santa? No, I'm not talking about his voiceover in the recently released kids' flick, Rise of the Guardians, in which he portrays North (alias Santa), an inked-up hulk with a Russian-tinged accent that perhaps reflects a childhood fascination with Rocky and Bullwinkle’s Boris Badenov.
The Hunt for Red December? (courtesy tumblr)
No, I'm talking about a monetary gift he made recently to the Adams Memorial Library in Central Falls, Rhode Island. The library, which was closed for several months in 2011 in the wake of the town's bankruptcy, received an unexpected check for the sum of $5,000 from Baldwin, his second donation in 12 months. “A year ago, Alec’s donation [of $10,000] helped us keep the doors open,” said board President Bruce Kaplan. “This year he’s helping us expand hours of operation and community programming.” The library, which is staffed mainly by volunteers, serves an impoverished community where the median household income is just over $22,000. Per capita income for the city was $10,825. Nearly 26% of families were below the poverty line, including 40% of those under age 18 and 30% of those age 65 or over. In 2010, Central Falls made the national news when the entire faculty and administrative staff of Central Falls High School was fired after the teachers' union refused to accept one of the "No Child Left Behind" options for restructuring
Baldwin, who in the past has garnered as much publicity for his cranky personality, public (and private) rants and tangles with the paparazzi as for his acting roles, has no personal connection to the town or the library.
Benevolence is definitely sexy. So the challenge is on to determine the librarian's favorite pin-up for 2013 (now that we have definitively proven that the world is not ending, at least not yet.) Mr. Gosling, the ball is in your court.
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