Months of hard work and dedication paid off and the annual Toys For Kids effort was one of the most successful in the program's history.
Saturday, organizers and volunteers distributed approximately 4,000 toys to families of 1,300 children in Brown County who would probably not otherwise have presents on Christmas morning.
"We had more than 100 volunteers come out today," said Wanda Thacker Martin, co-founder of the Brown County Toys For Kids program. "We would love to thank the community for the wonderful support we had this year in helping us provide toys for the 500 plus families."
For each child, parents were able to pick out two stocking stuffers, one smaller toy - stuffed animals of various sizes - and two major toys from the shelves.
"I say this every year," Martin said, "but every year it's true. These children are going to have a good Christmas. We do this for the children, but we do it for their families too. When parents are facing difficult times, it's just that much more pressure to try and provide Christmas presents for their children.
"It's all about the joy of giving, and sharing. That's the true message for the Christmas season."
This year, families arriving to select the toys for their children were greeted by surprise guest celebrities. Jerry, Kathie and Krystal Campbell, stars of A&E's show "American Hoggers," who earlier in the week helped KOXE promote their toy drive benefiting Toys For Kids, were at the Toys for Kids headquarters signing autographs and posing for pictures.
"We came out here to try and help bring in more toys for the kids in need," Jerry Campbell said. "I know that there is a need and many kids wouldn't have Christmas without the help of organizations like Toys For Kids."
The Campbells posed for photographs, signed autographs and talked with several families and kids during Saturday's distribution.
"I really enjoy seeing the people come together with their giving spirit and helping these kids," Jerry Campbell said. "They donated both toys, money and time to give the kids in need a Christmas like everyone else."