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Community makes Seneca Santa possible ADVERTISEMENT

Community makes Seneca Santa possible

SCHUYLER COUNTY--For many the holidays can bring increased family time, wonderful meals and gifts to celebrate the season. However, this time of year can also make it more apparent of those who are in need. Schuyler County's Seneca Santa program helps to make sure the holiday cheer reaches as many people as possible.
Seneca Santa traces its roots to the 1940s when a need was seen in the county. Fire departments and the postal workers would take toys to underprivileged children for Christmas. The tradition continues today, as fire departments from around the county will again be making stops on Christmas Eve morning to deliver toys. Volunteers make it all possible.
Last week, Thursday, Dec. 7, students from Watkins Glen went to the First Presbyterian Church in the village to help move boxes and begin preparations for the additional work in the coming weeks. The students helped offload a truck from Hesselson's which had games and toys that will be given to children through Seneca Santa. The program gives gifts to kids who are from two to 12 years old.
So far this year, there are 282 children from 122 families who will receive gifts. However, Seneca Santa organizer Peggy Scott expects that number will increase as Christmas approaches.
While the direct help from program volunteers will continue until all the gifts are delivered, the 21st annual Seneca Santa Fundraiser allowed even more members of the community to help donate holiday cheer. Last weekend, Grist Iron Brewing Company and Hazlitt 1852 Vineyards presented a party at Grist Iron with donations at the door and on auction items going to help kids in need. Live music and fun at the Saturday party packed the venue.
For those who still want to make a donation, Sal's Bar and Grill in Montour Falls is holding an Ugly Sweater Party to benefit Seneca Santa, Saturday, Dec. 16. The event begins at 4 p.m.and a donation of an unwrapped toy is requested. Donations can also be mailed to Seneca Santa, P.O. Box 22, Watkins Glen.

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