NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—For the 13th straight year, the New Brunswick Housing Authority hosted its annual Holiday Toy Giveaway on December 10 from 5-7pm at the agency's headquarters on Van Dyke Avenue.
All of the toys distributed by the NBHA staff were donated by the participants in the 13th Annual Big Chill, a charity 5k run/walk hosted by Rutgers Recreation.
Unlike most races, the participants in the Big Chill do not have to pay any entrance fees. Instead, they are asked to donate unwrapped toys that are then donated to local organizations.
Each year for the past thirteen years, toy donations collected from the race have allowed the New Brunswick Housing Authority to give out gifts to its residents.
Thanks to the efforts of the NBHA staff and the generosity of those involved with the Big Chill, each year the Holiday Toy Giveaway seems more successful than the last.
This year, residents and their children began to line up outside of the community center at around 4:30pm.
While waiting for the event to open, the children played outside and spoke of their excitement to see Santa Claus.
Once the doors opened at 5:00pm, residents and their children entered the community room and were given tickets to get in the line where they would receive the gifts.
Santa Claus, portrayed by NBHA Director of Maintenance Richard Sweeney, took pictures with the eager children.
New Brunswick Housing Authority Executive Director John Clarke handed out candy canes and Senior Portfolio Manager Andrea Eato-White helped direct residents and children throughout the event.
Toys were given to children ages 0-12 years of age. Raffle tickets were alsohanded out to the parents of children of a certain age for two bikes that were raffled off to one boy and one girl.
Each family left the event with several toys for each child, and left the children with happy faces.