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Toy drive starts up

The SCV Sheriff’s Station begins festive holiday event

Posted: December 3, 2009 9:59 p.m.
Updated: December 4, 2009 4:55 a.m.

Monticello Preparatory School student Laura DeFalco and other students perform during the kickoff event of the annual Sheriff's Station toy drive at Power Honda Valencia on Thursday.

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The sound of children’s voices singing to “Jingle Bells” and other holiday tunes filled Power Honda Valencia on Thursday evening as families filled two bins with donated toys.

Radio station KHTS AM-1220 broadcast the carols as dozens of people kicked off the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station’s annual toy drive.

Albert Galura, 30, of Canyon Country, dropped off a bag full of teddy bears before watching his sixth-grade daughter, a Leona Cox Community School student, sing and dance for the crowd.

“There’s a lot of kids that their parents cannot afford to buy toys,” Galura said.

The event marked the start of toy collection by the sheriff’s station, which will set up a “Toy Store” on Dec. 19 at College of the Canyons for families in need, said Los Angeles County sheriff’s Deputy Laurie Baylis.

Pre-registered families can sign up to attend the Toy Store day where children can visit Santa and parents can pick out donated gifts for their children, Baylis said.

“It’s so every child, no matter what their financial situation is, can feel like every other child on Christmas,” Baylis said.

The store served about 520 families last year and more are expected to attend this year because of the soured economy, she added.

“The demand — I believe it will be much greater this year,” Baylis said. “We have a lot of new families that are coming.”

Those who want to register for toy vouchers can contact their local schools.

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