By Kyle LoJacono
LUTZ — Britten Dental, located at 213 Crystal Grove Blvd. in Lutz, raised more than 200 pounds of Halloween candy during its Combat Candy program.
“It was even better than we anticipated, and we can’t thank the community enough,” said Dr. Nick Britten, Doctor of Dental Medicine.
Nick works with his father, Leonard, Doctor of Dental Surgery, who started Britten dental in Lutz some 20 years ago. Nick’s twin brother, Todd, received his D.M.D. from the University of Florida with Nick in May, and their older brother, Matt, received a master’s of International Business degree from UF also.
The Combat Candy program ran from Nov. 2 to 6, and Britten Dental planned on paying people $1 for every pound of Halloween candy they donated. However, the community changed things up for the practice.
“Everyone was very kind,” Britten said. “Almost everyone told us to keep the money and use it for postage to ship the candy to the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. We have such a great community here.”
Britten said people from Carrollwood, Lutz, Land O’ Lakes, Wesley Chapel and even further came to donate candy. All the candy was given to the Lutz Patriots to send to the troops with their normal care packages.
“We knew Britten Dental was going to be dropping off the candy they collected at our flag waving, but we didn’t know how much,” said Judy McCray, Lutz Patriots member. “Then when they showed up with 200 pounds, we were like ‘whoa.’ They helped us load it onto a truck and even donated a $100 check to help us ship the packages to the troops.”
McCray said the Lutz Patriots plan to ship about 12, 60-pound boxes to the troops, and the Combat Candy will go a long way to help them fill those boxes at their packing party on Nov. 21. The packing party was originally planned for Nov. 14, but it had to be moved to the following weekend.
McCray also said the Patriots are looking to donate as much of their materials to local troops overseas as possible. But to do so, they need the soldier’s families from the area to tell them where they are stationed. To inform the patriots where local soldiers are, e-mail them at .
Britten Dental had a couple kids who went above and beyond all others. Taylor and Tanner Armstrong, who attend Academy at the Lakes in Land O’ Lakes, gathered 100 pounds of candy from kids at the academy and donated it to the practice on Nov. 6.
So much candy all at once was even too tempting for a dentist.
When asked if he ate any candy, Britten said, “Guilty as charged. I ate one piece of Laughy Taffy, but I did brush my teeth and floss after.”
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