Children's Hospital . . . . Those are the words on so many readers' lips, and so many readers' checks. If this surge continues -- and there's every reason to believe it will -- our annual fund-raising campaign may be heading for a record.
These group contributions to our drive have recently graced the mailbox:
Employees, Spectrum Office Systems, Alexandria ($292).
Headquarters staff, Office of Inspector General, Department of Housing and Urban Development ($160).
Prince George's County Chapter, Maryland Retired Officers Association ($330).
Employees, The Charles E. Smith Companies ($540).
Employees, Gleason & Flynn, Rockville ($408 instead of exchanging gag gifts).
The people of W. S. Chesley Real Estate ($200).
Employees, Washington Office, National Park Service ($65 in funds remaining after the Christmas party, in honor of director James M. Ridenour).
Scott-Johnson-Collins VFW Post 9619, Morningside ($100).
Coffee mess, Building 10 NSI, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt ($500).
Montgomery Community Television Inc., Rockville ($25 in memory of Erin McMillan).
Henderson-Edmonds-Smith Unit No. 86, American Legion Auxiliary, Rockville ($300).
Staff and friends, The Heritage Foundation ($2,485 from these annually generous folks).
Walmer Enterprises, Inc., Alexandria ($50).
Manassas-Lake Ridge-Alexandria Bridge Group ($21.18).
Epiphany Byzantine Catholic Youth, Annandale ($35.20).
Annapolis Title Company ($35 in memory of Jim Fenton).
Carpet Decorators, Inc., Silver Spring ($100).
"Some of the staff," City of Hyattsville ($163).
Staff, Rolling Terrace Elementary School, Takoma Park ($200 instead of exchanging Christmas gifts).
Staff, Rachel Carson Elementary School, Gaithersburg ($190).
Bell Atlantic Benefits Planning, Arlington ($99).
Civil Service Retirees Luncheon Group ($50).
Eastern Federal Lands Highway Division, Federal Highway Administration ($104 by raffling a cheesecake).
Latin Honor Society, T.C. Williams High School ($65.70 from a bake sale).
Employees, Computer Decision Support, Inc., Alexandria ($85 instead of exchanging gifts, matched by the company).
Prairie Dog Court Neighbors, Waldorf ($157.45 raised by caroling).
DeLeuw, Cather & Company, Northwest Washington ($1,180, half from the employees, half from the company).
Foreball Golf Club of Washington, D.C., ($50).
Northern Virginia District Employees Benefit Association ($71.25 collected at a Christmas get-together).
Veterans Canteen Service Central Office, Department of Veterans Affairs ($264.15).
Brenneman Property Services, Inc., Bethesda ($95).
Metsat Project/Code 480, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt ($315).
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center ($25).
Employees, Office of Workforce Information, Office of Personnel Management ($80, and thanks for a 14th consecutive contribution).
Bendix Field Engineering Corp., Software Systems and Engineering ($150).
Bachelor & Bachelorette Square Dance Club ($121).
State Department Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations ($221 raised via a door-prize raffle at the annual holiday party).
Employees, Air Line Pilots Association, Herndon and Washington offices ($1,150).
Employees, Clean Sites, Alexandria ($75 in lieu of exchanging holiday cards).
St. Bernadettes Tuesday Club, Silver Spring ($53).
The Single Center, Columbia ($316.56).
Terri Levan's sixth grade class, Virginia Run Elementary School, Centreville ($31.29).
Springfield front office employees, Marlo Furniture ($159).
Staff, Columbia Pike Central Office, C & P Telephone ($150 from a clock raffle).
Employees, W. T. Galliher & Bro., Inc., Springfield ($307 instead of exchanging Christmas presents).
Bell Atlantic employees, fourth floor, Chesapeake Complex, Silver Spring ($426 from a month-long bake sale).
L. Barrett Contracting Co., Inc., Capitol Heights ($500).
Deep-Sea 20 ($300).
Arlen's Inc., Oakton ($406.40, half from the employees, half from boss Arlen Blechman).
Fred L. McKee Realty, Inc., Seabrook ($390).
The Maj Ladies of West Bethesda ($75).
Belfort Furniture, Herndon ($500 instead of holding a Christmas party).
Office staff, Burke and Springfield Connections ($35).
The Aged Woman's Home of Georgetown ($50).
Inslaw, Inc. ($58.15).
KVOP and KVOR Branches, General Services Administration ($31.55).
Bridge Center of Northern Virginia, Arlington ($75 from a charity club tournament, with thanks as always to club manager and chief limerick-coiner Tom Lyon).
Helen Malone's fifth graders, Oakridge Elementary School, Arlington ($44).
Staff, SEIU National Industry Pension Fund ($140).
Ben Franklin Store No. 3143, Annandale ($548).
Associates of the Greenbelt Nationwide Building ($15).
Network Operations Branch Coffee Mess, Code 534.3, Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt ($700).
Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Assistant Secretary for Acquisition, The Pentagon ($176).
AARP Pharmacy Service ($121 by raffling gingerbread houses baked by Angie and Paul Bergeron).
A/C (Returns Processing) Staff R:O and Room 3601 Neighbors R:R:Q, Internal Revenue Service ($250).
Employees, Engineer Automation Support Activity, McMillan Reservoir ($133.76).
Olympic Imported Parts Corp., Alexandria ($500).
Beech Street Foundation, Northwest Washington ($500).
Members, Identification Unit, Arlington County Police Department ($65).
Washington, D.C., Alumnae Chapter, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority ($176.25 collected at the annual Christmas party).
Sharon Jaffee's piano students ($50 instead of buying her gifts).
Staff and students, Potomac Massage Training Institute, Northwest Washington ($50).
Brian Gruber & Associates, Northwest Washington ($71).
Government Relations Staff, TRW Inc. ($100).
Park Mart, College Park ($457.77 from the jar atop the counter).
BFMA-Nation's Capital Chapter ($50).
U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, International Forestry ($101 instead of swapping funny gifts).
Richard Watkins Photography, Fairfax ($25).
Employees, Dermatology Associates, McLean ($10).
American Legion Auxiliary Unit 24, Alexandria ($50).
Compass Computer Services, Inc., Falls Church ($100 in honor of clients and employees).
Great work! Thanks so much, one and all.
TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CAMPAIGN:
Make a check or money order payable to Children's Hospital and mail it to Bob Levey, The Washington Post, Washington, D.C., 20071.
THE CAMPAIGN ENDS ON JAN. 18.