Toys for Tots spreads holiday cheer - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Toys for Tots spreads holiday cheer

More than 600 children received gifts at the event. (Photo source: WLOX News) More than 600 children received gifts at the event. (Photo source: WLOX News)
Organizers say they'll continue the event as long as they can. (Photo source: WLOX News) Organizers say they'll continue the event as long as they can. (Photo source: WLOX News)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

Some of Santa's Gulfport helpers are making sure children along the Gulf Coast have a Merry Christmas.

For the second year in a row, Marlene Hayes coordinated a day of giving for Coast children. Hundreds of toys were set up at Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church in Gulfport Saturday morning, and are now in the hands of more than 600 boys and girls.

"We have all the toys laid out, unwrapped so they can see what they want," Hayes said.

The best part — boys and girls weren't limited to just one toy. They got to pick out two of their favorites to take home. 
    
"It brings us joy to be able to help out and see the kids smile during the holidays," Gunnery Sgt. Richard Rios said

The kids weren't the only ones walking around with a smile on their faces; parents were all smiles as well. 

"I wasn't expecting all of this. I'm glad that they came out and helped the community, and did something nice to spread cheers to the little boys and girls," Lenea Osler said.

Spreading cheer is why Anthany Wallace says he had to come back for a second year to volunteer; to see the faces of children and their parents light up with joy from the selfless act of giving.

"Just to be able to give back, you know, to those who have a little less than others. You know what I'm saying? It's just beautiful," Wallace said.

Hayes says she'll keep the tradition of giving going as long as they can.

The toys from the giveaway were donated by church members and hundreds of others from communities across the coast.

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