PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Forget about just decking the halls….one local business owner is spreading Christmas cheer and giving back in a very big way by bringing the North Pole to North Philadelphia.
Candy canes, ice sculptures, Santa Claus, and reindeer are all part of the North Pole to North Philly Christmas Toy Giveaway.
“I’ve got over 100 bikes, I have over 500 toys to give away to the kids,” said Saudia Shuler, owner of Country Cookin’ soul food restaurant in North Philadelphia. “We have power cars, Batman, Robin, Spiderman we have dolls, we have a whole toy store in here.”
Shuler orchestrated the event for the less fortunate.
“I know how it feels to not have,” she said. “It’s bad when you need and you don’t want to ask, so this is for everybody.”
Hundreds of children stood in the line that wrapped around several blocks for a chance to see Santa Claus and receive a special gift.
Even Santa’s helpers braved the cold and makeshift snow in an effort to make this a memorable Christmas for everyone who came out.
“I’m so blessed,” said Malikah, Santa’s helper. “This is really just a blessing just to see all this stuff come together, to see all the kids in need and [Saudia] to be able to reach out to the community, it’s a wonderful thing.”
Surprise, gratitude and amazement best describe the attitude of many of the kids who came out say Santa, Ms. Saudia, helped save Christmas.
“We don’t get this often,” said one young girl. “This is probably the first time this ever happened, so it feels good for somebody to care about the community and help people in need.”
Ms. Saudia says she’s happy so many people from all over the city came together to make sure kids in her North Philadelphia neighborhood have a Merry Christmas.