Toys for Tots program gets turbo-boost

Car enthusiasts contribute to charity

 UPDATED 6:56 AM HST Nov 26, 2012
Toys for Tots drive
HONOLULU -

Sunday morning, the season of giving went into overdrive as "gear heads" gathered in Kakaako.

"I've always been a car guy, since I was growing up," said Wayne Silva, with the VW Club of Honolulu.

He's not alone, hundreds of proud owners showed off their prized possessions -- vintage cars from the 1930s to the latest tricked-out rides. The cars were on display at the group "Show and Shine".

The day for drivers wasn't about trophies or bragging rights though, instead it was about giving something back.

"The generosity of the community has been amazing," said Abe Dentel, with the USMC's Toys for Tots program.

Drivers in the car clubs don't just cruise around the island anymore.  Now, they said, they also park with a purpose: to help their community.

So, riding along in many of these hot rods were toys for tots, who might otherwise go without over the holidays.

"I'm thankful for everything I had as a child, but not everybody has that opportunity. So if I can help out a little that makes me feel better," said Ted Shiroma, with Scion Evolution.

Christmas may even come early to some kids in need. Because of all the giving, the toys won't stay under wraps til the end of the month.

"We do get a lot of toys and we don't have room to store them all. That means we get them out to kids as quickly as possible," said Dentel.

Games, stuffed animals and bikes were all dropped off during the day of cars and charity.

But, as you could have guessed, there was one kind of toy that topped the list of giving.

"Hotwheels, of course. What kid doesn't like Hotwheels," said Shiroma.

"Hotwheels, the old-time favorite. We're car guys so we got some Hotwheels for the kids," said Silva.

The event gathered up over 2,000 toys, which is just some of the tens of thousands needed for the annual Toys for Tots campaign in the islands.  Those donations will be collected up until just days before Christmas.

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