Adriana Acosta

It was a winter wonderland that included snow, elves, Christmas music and a visit from the man himself, Santa Claus, at the Edinburg Municipal Park this past weekend.

The Boys and Girls Club of Edinburg RGV held their 2nd annual Christmas in the park celebration where children got the chance to receive free toys, sit on Santa’s lap and enjoy a full day of fun and games with a carnival themed celebration.

“It’s all about the kids; it’s all about the toys and getting them toys for Christmas,” said Maria Medina, director of operations for the Edinburg Boys and Girls Club.

Over fifteen sponsored made the event possible and included the Junior League of McAllen who was on hand to help the children pick a toy from the many toy bins that were on site.

Medina said they also worked with Toys for Tots and collected toys so that every child in the community would have a toy this Christmas season.

Another sponsor at the event was the Edinburg Volunteer Fire Department and EXPLORER club which donated and served over 600 meals for the event.

Each year, the Rotary Club of Edinburg donates funds to purchase bikes each year that equals enough to purchase approximately 20 bikes for the children. The bikes are then raffled to the children on the day of the Christmas toy giveaway.

The event which usually takes place at the community center was brought outdoor last year to promote outdoor activity said Medina.

“We decided to do this to promote the outdoors and have more activities for parents to come outdoors,” she said.

One of the activities the Boys and Girls Club wanted to bring to the children was snow. A truck filled with blocks of ice was brought in and hundreds of blocks of ice were shaved to simulate a cold snowy day.

“We wanted to bring the snow to the community because a lot of our children have never seen snow,” she said.

The Boys and Girls Club of Edinburg serves over 20,000 children in 19 different locations in Edinburg, Edcouch, Elsa, Faysville, Monte Alto, Hargill, San Carlos, and San Manuel/Linn. The Boys and Girls Club broke ground earlier this year for a new 32,000 square feet facility.