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The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

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The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

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The Rider Online | Legacy HS Student Media

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Key Club, AVID Host Toys for Tots Campus Fundraiser

Juniors+Arnoldo+Chavez+and+Keslynn+Smith+walk+under+the+Tunnel+of+Lights+at+the+Toys+for+Tots+event+on+Nov.+30.+The+Center+hosted+the+event+to+raise+toys+and+money+for+local+children.
Photo by Caroline Schlieker
Juniors Arnoldo Chavez and Keslynn Smith walk under the Tunnel of Lights at the Toys for Tots event on Nov. 30. The Center hosted the event to raise toys and money for local children.

Key Club and AVID organized of Toys for Tots for Legacy. The clubs hosted a pep rally to raise toys and money for the charity which focuses on distributing toys for kids at Christmas. AVID sponsor Ms. Cheryl Cason helped prepare for the pep rally, including getting it approved by administrators and finding teachers to participate in games and challenges, like dodgeball and human sundae making.

It was a great way to get out of class to help out the community. There are many families here without homes and without the idea of Christmas. There are many young children who don’t get to celebrate Christmas or get toys so they miss out on such an essential aspect.

— Praisy Geevarghese, 11

“Surprisingly, we had a lot of volunteers come out and say we want to throw dodgeballs at children,” Ms. Cason said. “Our kids are pretty good and they jump up and volunteer where they’re needed when they’re needed.”

Last year, AVID hosted Toys for Tots, but this year, joined Key Club to co-host the event this year. Key Club students presented the idea for the pep rally after being tasked with finding a way to raise money. Junior Praisy Geevarghese, secretary, wanted to help the community by helping plan the event. 

“It was a great way to get out of class to help out the community,” Geevarghese said. “There are many families here without homes and without the idea of Christmas. There are many young children who don’t get to celebrate Christmas or get toys so they miss out on such an essential aspect.”

The pep rally alone raised $3,000 and 100 toys. The organizations used the money to purchase more toys, raising 1,072 toys for the school. The overall ticket goal of the event was 650, yet the clubs sold over 1,000. Ms. Abbigayle Marion, Key Club sponsor, celebrates Legacy achieving second place overall in the district.

“Creating a spirit of giving within our Legacy culture was something we really believed in and wanted to take on,” Ms. Marion said. “This event is extremely well run by the district, and we wanted to give as much as we could.”

The Dr. Jim Vaszauskas Center for the Performing Arts held a four-day event to raise money, holiday spirit and to give toys to children in need. This event included performances from cheer, the Silver Spurs, along with chamber and show choir. The event also featured an armadillo ring, food trucks, bouncy houses, a 360 photo experience, a petting zoo and a mascot race where Bucky the Bronco took first place.

We’re helping each other out. When you can recognize someone else’s pain and someone else’s fear and feel it yourself. Once you alleviate that pain and fear in some small way like giving a child a toy. It really helps you to create empathy which creates community.

— Ms. Cheryl Cason,

“It was amazing, a fun experience,” Bucky, (Aiden Lawson), said. “I like representing my school.”

Toys for Tots is the biggest event The Center has all year. Mansfield ISD became a distribution center, meaning all the toys collected in the toy drives are distributed here in Mansfield. At the event, there is an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 toys collected along with 15,000 from all the different schools in the district. Because the toys stay in Mansfield, the district coordinated with counselors from each school to select certain families in need and give them a VIP experience allowing them to go to the warehouse and letting the kids handpick their toys from the bunch. This is Ms. Christine Uribe’s first year as an event coordinator at The Center helping with the collection of toys.

“There’s a lot of different moving parts to these huge events, and it takes a really strong team to get every aspect up and running up to perfection,” Ms. Uribe said. It just takes so many people that really are all working together but it’s all worth it”

Toys for Tots celebrates its 75th year anniversary in 2022.

“We’re helping each other out. When you can recognize someone else’s pain and someone else’s fear and feel it yourself,” Ms. Cason said. “Once you alleviate that pain and fear in some small way like giving a child a toy. It really helps you to create empathy which creates community.”

About the Contributors
Colin Nguyen
Colin Nguyen, Staff Writer
"I am the hope of the omniverse! I am the lightbulb in the darkness! I am the bacon in the fridge for all living things that cry out in hunger! I am the Alpha and the Amiga! I am the terror that flaps in the night! I am Son Goku and I am a Super..."
Caroline Schlieker
Caroline Schlieker, Photo Editor in Chief
Hey, I am Caroline Schlieker, EIC of the photojournalism publication for our online newspaper and yearbook. I love animals, listening to Koe Wetzel, and waffles.
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