The Times West Virginian

December 4, 2013

More families take part on second day of Christmas Toy Shop

By Emily Gallagher
Times West Virginian

FAIRMONT — Shoppers who missed out on Black Friday shopping got another chance Tuesday.

Organizers of the Christmas Toy Shop held the event, which provides free toys for low-income families in Marion County, for a second day Tuesday after their main event on Black Friday left them with extra toys.

Organizers said Tuesday’s event was just as popular as Friday’s.

“They were lined up out the door and down the sidewalk,” Randy Elliott, a member of the Christmas Toy Shop committee, said.

Debbie Mann, who registered families before they went shopping at the event, said they provided more than 500 families with toys Friday.

“It averaged out to be two or three kids per family that were shopped for Friday,” she said.

During Tuesday’s event, shoppers had a limit of picking out toys for three children or less. Mann said on Friday, shoppers were allowed to shop for more than three.

“With the second day, we wanted to be fair and to make sure there were enough toys for everyone no matter where they were in line,” she said.

One family who was shopping for a 2-year-old and an infant said they were glad something like the Christmas Toy Shop is available in Marion County.

“This is awesome that they do this for the kids,” one shopper said.

Another shopper said that despite the fact she hasn’t been able to work, her kids will still have presents on Christmas morning.

“I had never been here before,” she said. “I will be coming back next year. It helps a lot.”

Holley Faulkner, organizer of the Christmas Toy Shop, said Tuesday’s event went smoothly and volunteers got a workout.

“As soon as the volunteer was finished with one shopper and said Merry Christmas, they were right back helping another shopper,” he said.

Faulkner said having Tuesday’s event be as successful as Friday’s was gratifying, and he was thankful that it was promoted in such a short time. He said the evening event was a positive experience.

“It was a great evening. People were appreciative and positive,” he said.

Faulkner said the whole purpose of the Christmas Toy Shop is to bless Marion County children with gifts.

“It’s an extraordinary time for the county to come together and do something so beautiful. I’ve got to be careful and not take it for granted,” he said. “Now it’s been five years (since the first Christmas Toy Shop) and the county keeps giving and giving.”

After Tuesday’s Christmas Toy Shop, there were still toys left. Faulkner said those toys will go to local agencies that will give them to children.

Email Emily Gallagher at egallagher@timeswv.com or follow her on Twitter @EGallagherTWV.