OCEANSIDE — Santa Claus, carolers and a rockin’ deejay rang in the spirit of the holidays at the third annual Saturday for Giving on Dec. 6. The event took place at the Regal Entertainment Plaza where toys, food and warm coats were collected for local families in need.
“We collected 200 toys last year, two truckloads of toys and blankets, 700 pounds of food and want to top that,” Cathy Nykiel, MainStreet Oceanside, event coordinator, said. Within two hours, Saturday for Giving had almost reached its collection goal.
The Saturday for Giving event has grown steadily over the past three years. “The turnout is higher this year with more community sponsors,” Nykiel said. “People are now asking us how they can get involved.”
Brother Bennos and North County Community Services were on hand to help collect food donations and more than 30 volunteers pitched in to help including the Oceanside High School cheerleading team. “Some of us are collecting toys, some are Santa’s helpers taking pictures, some are doing crafts with the kids,” Mackenzie Kurtz, an Oceanside High School cheerleader, said.
While Saturday for Giving pulls in the bulk of donations, MainStreet Oceanside began collecting toys, food and coats in November and will continue to accept donations through Dec. 18, at MainStreet Oceanside, 701 Mission Avenue. Additional drop-off sites for donations are posted on the MainStreet Web site at www.msoceanside.com.