---- — PLATTSBURGH — The seventh-annual Dentistry From The Heart event will provide a free day of dental care on a first-come, first-served basis to residents of the North Country.
Dr. Michael O’Connor, Dr. William P. Caldon and Dr. Donnon “D.J.” O’Neill, along with the volunteer staff from High Peaks Dental and other local dental offices, will host the event on Saturday, Sept. 14.
In the past, people have arrived as early as 2 a.m. on the day of the event, prepared to camp out in order to receive free services.
Over the years, Dentistry From The Heart patients have traveled from across New York, Vermont and Canada to High Peaks Dental, located at 675 Route 3, Suite 201, Plattsburgh, for the annual free day of dentistry.
In 2001, Dentistry From The Heart started with New Port Richey dentist Dr. Vincent Monticciolo as a means of give back to the community and provide dental care to the growing number of Americans without dental insurance.
Since its inception, Dentistry From The Heart has grown to include more than 200 annual events nationwide and provide more than 45,000 people with the care.
Annually, O’Connor, Caldon, O’Neill and their team of dentists, volunteers and sponsors provide the first arriving patients, 18 years or older, with a free extraction, filling or cleaning. The local team has donated more than $160,000 in free dental care to more than 500 North Country residents.
“We feel it is important to give something back to the people of our community, so we decided what better way is there to do it than to give the community what we do best, which is to provide exceptional dentistry with incredible service,” Caldon said in a news release.
“The services provided by Dentistry from the Heart help more than just a patient’s teeth; it gives them a renewed reason to smile,” O’Connor said in a statement.