A Christmas miracle

Toys for Tots announces toy surplus
Dec. 15, 2012 @ 12:05 AM

There will be plenty of presents this Christmas.

Last week, the Toys for Tots program in Sevier County did not have enough toys to distribute to families who registered for them in November.

“We didn’t realize it would be that drastic,” said Ron Russell, commandant of the local Marine Corps League, which organizes the effort. “We were kind of wondering how to fill the bag for people who signed up.”

Russell’s wife Brenda called the Toys for Tots Foundation, which arranged for more playthings. “They sent 12 pallets of toys,” he said.

Now there are more than enough toys, so families who missed earlier opportunies to sign up will get another chance. They can register at the previously scheduled toy distribution event and receive presents then. On Saturday, Dec. 15, at 2 p.m., they should go to Red Roof Mall, 2850 Parkway in Pigeon Forge, Suite 28D.

Toy and money donations to Toys for Tots are down in 2012. The Sevier County program raised $16,000 this year. Last year it raised $34,000.

“That’s because of the economy,” Russell said. “Companies are laying people off. We have to account for that.”

Thanks to the delivery, Toys for Tots is looking forward to a joyous holiday season, Russell said. “Everything we do, we do for the love of Christmas.”

kburns@themountainpress.com