A lull in donations at the Christmas Connection this year has created a last minute rush to buy and deliver gifts for hundreds of needy families.
For the first time in more than 15 years, the Christmas Connection will have to make deliveries on Christmas Day. And Wednesday, some Tallahassee police officers spent their shift on "gift patrol."
Officer Greg Black is once again scaling the steps here at 1010 Macomb Street.
Not bearing handcuffs, but boxes full of Christmas cheer for families like Hattie Kelley’s.
"Everything she asked for we normally get. Everything she asked for, he got. So I'm very happy and very pleased and I thank everybody that donated and gave for us to have a good Christmas,” Hattie Kelley shares.
"It's kind of fun to come out here and do something for the community and get smiles instead of yelled at,” laughs Officer Black.
This entire squad of officers will spend Christmas Eve helping to deliver truckloads of gifts and groceries.
A lull in donations this year forced volunteers to go out and buy many items at the last minute.
This is the second year that Officer Maria Mercurio has delivered gifts for the Christmas Connection. One of her stops will brighten the day for three of Clara Kilpatrick’s grandchildren.
"She doesn't have the money to, you know, really buy Christmas gifts for her children. So it means a great deal to me and to her and to my grandchildren. I really appreciate that. I really do,” explains Clara Kilpatrick.
If you would like to help with deliveries Thursday, the Christmas Connection should be open around 10 a.m.
They're especially seeking people with SUVs and trucks.
3958 West Pensacola Street
Just past the Appleyard intersection.
Call with any questions 575-1520.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or firstname.lastname@example.org.