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Santa getting help this year

By Staff
Melissa Cason
Russellville City employees are working together to give Santa a little help this Christmas.
City Council members Gary Cummings and David Grissom have teamed up with the Russellville Fire Department and Russellville Police Department to collect new and used toys for the children of Russellville.
"This Christmas is going to be hard Christmas economically," Cummings said. "We are going to do all we can to make sure the children of Russellville receive a visit from Santa this year."
Cummings said there will be drop boxes in the Russellville City Hall, Police and Fire Departments in addition to other sites, which will announced soon.
"We are a little behind on this, but we want to get as much community involvement as we can," Cummings said.
Police Chief Chris Hargett and Fire Chief Joe Mansell said the program is similar to what they have done in the past, but the toys will be distributed locally.
"In years past, we have given our toys to other organizations that may have distributed them outside the city," Mansell said. "This year, we know the toys will stay here in Russellville."
Cummings said they are looking for anything that anyone can donate from a good used bicycle to clothing for the children.
In addition to the donation sites, there will be booths set up at Wal-Mart. The fire department is planning to offer photos with the firetruck in exchange for a toy donation.
"We want to do the photos a few times if possible so be looking for times that will be going on," Cummings said. "We just want to do the best we can to make sure this Christmas is good for every child in Russellville."
Hargett said they will get names of families in need from the school system, and the Department of Human Resources. But, names can be given to the city.
"If you know of a family in need, let us know," Hargett said. "We will put them on the list."
Cummings and Grissom wants this to become an annual event for the city, and plan to make this bigger each year.
"I've always wanted to do something like t his but have never had the opportunity," Cummings said.
Mayor Troy Oliver and the rest of the council are behind the effort, and encourage everyone in Russellville to pull together and help one another this holiday season.