Dollar Tree surprises Boys & Girls Club with 1,500 toys

Just in time for Christmas, 115 members of the Boys & Girls Club of Oakhurst received bags of toys last week thanks to a large donation from the Dollar Tree store in the Raley’s shopping center.

The club received more than 1,500 toys from Dollar Tree for the holiday season. The generous donation provided each club member with a grocery bag with more than 20 toys, including yoyo’s, puzzles, monster trucks, dolls, and stuffed animals. The club members received the bags their last week of school before winter break.

“The children were very surprised and excited to see all the gifts given to them,” Jennifer Simmons, club director, said. “Parents thanked us and expressed their gratitude for the much needed help this holiday season. On behalf of our club members and their families, the Boys & Girls Club would like to send a special thank you to the Dollar Tree of Oakhurst and Operation Home Front for keeping their donation local for our Mountain Area children.”

Simmons recently took over as the new director of the club, a whole new staff and new volunteers have also joined the club. Simmons, 30, comes from the Central Coast where she played and later coached in Boys & Girls Club athletic programs. She has coached various basketball, softball, and baseball teams throughout the last 10 years while working in grocery management.

The club has not only undergone a staff transformation, but a physical transformation as well. In late October during the school’s fall break, staff and volunteers spent more than 40 hours making needed repairs, cleaning, and painting the inside of the club. Maria Myaskovsky painted three murals in the one week.

Since October, daily membership has doubled with new members signing up weekly. Board president and frequent volunteer Bob Macaulay has been working with Simmons in finding new ways to grow membership, while lowering costs for Mountain Area families. Together, they want to provide a safe and fun environment available to all children in the community.

Starting Jan. 1, membership will be $25 per school semester. The Boys & Girls Club is open Monday - Friday after school until 6 p.m. During school breaks, the club is open Monday - Friday, noon - 6 p.m., excluding holidays.

“We are always looking for new members and adult volunteers to help with our many programs, and I would encourage parents to contact me for additional information,” Simmons said.

Details: (559) 642-4600.

B&GC of Oakhurst