BIG RUN — The Big Run Volunteer Fire Company’s "Breakfast with Santa" on Saturday not only allowed children to deliver their Christmas wish lists personally to the jolly old elf, but also raised funds for two Big Run-area non-profit organizations and provided everyone with a delicious breakfast.
"This is the second year for 'Breakfast with Santa,' and we collected a total of $902.60 from hungry people in the Big Run area," said Rick Smith, Big Run Area Volunteer Fire company vice president.
Smith said the Big Run Betas and the Big Area New Community Helping Hands (BRANCHH) will each receive a check for $451.30 that was raised from Saturday's breakfast held at the Big Run Fire Hall.
Santa had 90 children from the area provide him with their Christmas lists during the four-hour event, Smith said, adding that the volunteer firefighters served 250 meals.
"Brett Neal used this as his senior project at Punxsutawney Area High School," he said.
"Since we've been doing this we've asked the seniors if they would want to organize and run this event as their senior project so we could give a helping hand to an area youth," Smith said.
"The community gives so much to use throughout the year. This is just our way to help those who are less fortunate throughout town," he said.
Smith said it gives the fire company the chance to feel good and give back to the community.
"This has become a regular event, and we look forward to continuing it into the future," said Smith, adding that there was a silent auction that was also held during the fundraiser.
"The kids enjoyed being able to connect with Santa personally here at the fire hall," he said.
Smith thanked everyone who donated to the breakfast: Big Run Betas, Big Run Fire Hall, Reagle’s Notary, Yeager Sanitation, Galliker's Dairy, Biggie’s Quality Meats, Melissa's It's All About You Salon, Marion Center Bank, Stello Foods, Wachob's Market, Beaver Meadow Creamery, Neko's, Fezell's County Market, Advanced Auto Parts, The Pool Guys, Walmart, Mahoning Valley Milling, Sheetz, the Neal family and Missy Peffer.