Fourth-grader Max Lazarowitz woke his mother up one morning a few years ago and told her his idea for a summer project: build an arcade out of recycled materials.
Lazarowitz had heard about Caine Monroy who created an arcade out of recycled cardboard in his father’s Los Angeles car repair shop. “I got cardboard boxes and my first few games; it was hard, but then it got easier,” said Lazarowitz whose motto is “Little Kids Dreaming Big.”
He launched the arcade in his driveway in September 2016 and donated the more than $1,000 he raised to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. In November 2016 and 2017, money raised by Max’s Arcade went to Brookside and Claremont schools to buy recess equipment.
Last November, Claremont hosted the arcade which raised $1,400. As a result, Lazarowitz was able to shop for holiday toys, clothing and books for families Claremont had contacted. The stores – Penny & Ting, Bob’s Army & Navy and Laur-Lee Sports – all gave discounts.
Lazarowitz likes being able to brighten people’s lives. “I wouldn’t want to keep the money for myself because I know I wouldn’t have much to do with it. I’m really happy and I’m thankful for what I have,” he said.
Ferzeen Shamsi, Claremont assistant principal, called him an inspiration. “For someone so young to already know the gift that kindness brings is remarkable,” she said.