What to Know

  • In the past, fire stations citywide were open for toy collections, but because of coronavirus public health restrictions, the options were reduced to the seven sites.
  • Gifts for infants up to 16-year-olds are needed.
  • The toy drive is on now through Christmas Eve.

Riverside firefighters inaugurated their annual campaign to collect gifts for underprivileged children throughout the city, asking residents who can afford to make a donation to drop blankets, sports gear and unwrapped toys at any one of multiple “Spark of Love” toy drive locations.

“With love and support of donors and sponsors, we have been able to help over 5,000 kids each year receive a new toy during the holiday season,” Riverside Fire Marshal Jennifer McDowell said. “We hope to make that happen again this year with the help of your donations.”

The toy drive, which is supported by fire agencies throughout Southern California, will run through Dec. 24. The focus is on gifts for infants up to 16-year-olds.

In Riverside, seven locations have been specifically designated as drop-off points:
  

In the past, fire stations citywide were open for toy collections, but because of coronavirus public health restrictions, McDowell said the options were reduced to the seven sites.

Along with sports paraphernalia, bed ware and toys, gift cards are also welcome, according to the fire marshal.

She said staff from the Riverside Parks, Recreation & Community Services Department will begin distributing gifts before Christmas.

More information is available at RiversideCA.gov/Park_Rec.

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By Kelley Wheeler

Kelley Wheeler is a Metro reporter covering political issues and general assignments. A second-generation journalist, worked with all major news outlet, she holds a vast expeirience. Kelley is a graduate of USC with degrees in journalism and English literature. She is a recipient of Yale’s Poynter Fellowship in Journalism.

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