Twin Cities Toy Drive Is A Success After Fire | News
City of Tonawanda, NY - Lots of heroes from across the area really stepped up this weekend. They helped The Rockin' With Santa Toy Drive in the Twin Cities, deliver on a yearly promise on Sunday.
That promise was to hand out thousands of toys to young children so that they can have gifts to open on Christmas Day.
Saturday morning over 100 gifts were lost in the fire at the Elks Lodge 860, but the community came through that night to make sure these children can enjoy the holidays.
After the fire, organizers were forced to move this year's toy drive to the City of Tonawanda Fire Headquarters on William Street. Over 2,000 toys were collected this year, and wrapped on the spot before they were given to about 140 families from the Tonawandas.
John White tells 2 On Your Side as word of the fire spread, people continued to donate toys throughout Saturday.
"People walking in with 3,4,5,6 bags of toys," said White.
Rockin' With Santa volunteers like Joyce Santiago were all too happy to bring children an early taste of Christmas.
"Its nice to give toys, but when you see it going to a family, you see them smiling and put thought into it, naturally you get something out of it. That's better for me," said Santiago.
"It helps out, for the parents and the people that's not able to work or don't have enough money to support to buy their children stuff for Christmas," said Michelle Hunter as she was picking gifts for her 5 children. "So it think this is a wonderful thing and as long as they have this going on I will be here every year."
Organizers said one person came in Saturday night, and donated $200 in cash just to make sure there were enough toys were on hand to pass out Sunday.
The toy drive may be over for now, but the work continues. Gift cards that were donated will be used to purchase gifts for next year.