Marion, Miss. The second annual Marion PD Toy Drive took center stage at Penny’s Flea Market and Antiques.
Hundreds turned out to donate toys for kids across Lauderdale County. Even Santa himself showed up to lend some Christmas cheer for the cause and so the kids could give him their Christmas list. Captain Casey Hoffer says he was excited to see such a good turn out, despite the rainy weather.
"Right now we have an SUV loaded down," Hoffer said. "And now that it's full, we're moving on to another vehicle. It's been a great turnout, even though it has been bad weather, we've had great group of people that have really supported us."
Marion Police Chief Randall Davis says he wants to stress to area children that police officers aren't the bad guys, but instead, the police are there to serve the community and help those in need.
"I’ve said this before, the kids see police in a bad way," Chief Davis said. " We're just here to set a positive note that we are here to help. That’s how you get things started with the kids early, to let them know there is help out there fore them, and there are different routes for getting help."
Penny Kennedy, the owner of Penny's Flea Market, said that when she rode with the police last year to deliver the toys, it was truly touching to see how excited the kids were over a basketball or toy car. She said that's why she is helping again this year.
"This is just something we wanted to do to give back to the town of Marion," Kennedy said. "I think what the police department is doing is a wonderful thing, and we here at Penny's Flea Market feel blessed to be a part of it."
If you would like to donate to the cause just contact the Marion Police Department, which will be accepting donations until December 24. The number is 601-483-9573.