As Christmas approaches, children everywhere will be watching the skies for Santa Claus. Here in Fairfax County some very special children won't have to wait until Christmas Eve. Since 1988, Santa and his elves have been rumbling down the streets of Fairfax County on motorcycles picking up and delivering toys to children in local hospitals.
Once again this year, Santa will temporarily trade in his sleigh and reindeer for a Harley-Davidson motorcycle and police escort. The Fairfax County Police Motor Squad, along with with the Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office, Virginia State Police, Fairfax City Police, the Town of Vienna Police, and the Herndon Police will escort Santa on his annual “Ride for Children” – according to FCPD Media Relations Bureau.
During the second week of December, Santa and his elves will collect donated toys from local police stations, other government facilities, and eight Fairfax County Schools. On Dec. 13 and 14 Santa and his helpers will deliver toys to children at INOVA Children’s Hospital Child - Life Services Center and the Georgetown Hospital Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. Some of the toys that are not handed out on the day of Santa’s visit are left with the Child Life programs at each hospital. Those toys are used throughout the year to provide the children something to keep their mind off being in the hospital. Toys will also go to various local charities including Life with Cancer and the Herndon-Reston F.I.S.H. (Friendly Instant Sympathetic Help).
Anyone wishing to make a donation can bring a new, unwrapped toy, game, book, or other gift to any Fairfax County Police Station, Fairfax County Public Safety Headquarters, Fairfax County Print Shop at the Government Center, or the lobbies of the Pennino and Herrity Office Buildings. All donations should be made before 9 a.m. Monday, Dec. 11.