A local off-roading group is holding a toy drive to raise donations for a kids Christmas charity.
The Maritime Toyotaholics, an off-road Toyota enthusiasts group, are collecting toys and donations again this year to go toward the Christmas Index charity program.
Stemming from the success of last year’s toy drive, the group will be collecting donations up until their toy drive trail ride on Saturday, Dec. 9.
The group held its first toy drive last year, and brought in $560 for the charity, as well as six truckloads of new and slightly used toys.
“My SUV was packed from the floor to the roof with toys,” said Charles Hyslop, co-organizer of the drive.
“When we dropped it off, I asked the Christmas Index workers how big our donation was compared to other groups who had donated. They told us we had the largest donation, which felt pretty cool to us.”
This year, the toy drive will run similar to the last one, with drop-off points set up at Truro Toyota, Ellis Imports on Willow Street, and Serious Sounds Off-Road on Walker Street.
Something new they are trying this year is to get people to donate items for older kids as well as toys for younger children.
“A lot of people forget about teenagers, who are also part of the Christmas Index program,” said Hyslop.
“Aside from new or slightly used toys for kids, we are looking for stuff for teenage boys and girls, such as toothbrushes, makeup, hair straighteners, body hygiene stuff and anything else teens could use.”
The trail ride on Dec. 9 is open to anyone who donated and wants to hit the trails, but some caution is given to those who are inexperienced.
“The trail is a little bit advanced, so someone would probably need a modified rig,” said Hyslop.
“You could take a stock truck through, but it won’t come out stock, so we advise you bring something built for trail riding.”
Hyslop is hoping the group exceeds its previous donation, and wants to reach $1,000 in donations for the Christmas Index.
“I would love to be able to give them $1,000; I think that amount would be awesome,” he said.
For information on the trail ride or donations, contact the group through their Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/groups/766805970150549/), or stop by one of the mentioned donation drop-off points.