Video Photographed and Created by Dale P. Hansen
For the 13th consecutive year, Toys for Tots Vallarta will be travelling in caravans to outlying villages to hand out toys to underprivileged kids on Three Kings’ Day.
Over the course of the past 13 years, more than 100,000 toys have been distributed, resulting in 100,000 smiles on the faces of kids who might otherwise not have received any gifts during the Christmas season.
With a visit by the Three Kings can come a greater sense of inclusion and belief by these kids that the future holds as much promise for them as for better off children they see on TV. Then, perhaps more of these poor kids will be encouraged to stay in school to pursue loftier dreams.
Two major fundraisers were held this past weekend to generate enough money to purchase at least 7,000 toys this year. A charity golf scramble on Saturday attracted 75 participants at the Vista Vallarta Golf Club. On Sunday, a gala Dinner/ Dance at the Marriott CasaMagna Resort & Spa was enjoyed by 180 proud supporters.
Both Vista Vallarta and the Marriott, who've been major supporters of Toys for Tots since the inception 13 years ago, paid 100% of the costs of these two events, meaning every peso raised will go to the purchase of toys.
Adding to the total are generous cash and in-kind contributions from Coldwell Banker La Costa Realty, OXXO, Punta Mita Foundation and Cashola ATM, and smaller contributions from nearly 100 small businesses throughout the Bay.
The Toys for Tots program in Puerto Vallarta is operated by the local Navy League Council, under the leadership of President Bill Clark.
Toys for Tots International was founded by the U.S. Marine Corps in 1946, and to show their enthusiasm for the enormously successful PV program, they agreed to send Major John Flanagan from the Marine Corps detachment at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico City. Major Flanagan played golf and attended the dinner dance, where he gave the keynote address to a full house.
Toys will be distributed to the kids on Monday, January 7, the day after Three Kings' Day and the 1st day back to school from the holiday break.
About 20 caravans of volunteers will fan out across the Bahia, from Nayarit to Cabo Corrientes, originating from the parking lot of the Marriott Resort in the Marina.
If you'd like to join this fun and fulfilling adventure, please arrive at the Marriott no later than 8:00 am to enjoy a cup of coffee and rosca while assisting in the loading of toys aboard Mexican Navy trucks and SUV’s/pick-up trucks from
It's an unforgettable and incredibly fulfilling experience.
If you'd like to participate, please contact Bill Clark at (322) 222-3616, or simply show up at the Marriott for assignment to one of the caravans.
The Puerto Vallarta Navy League Council is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting the Sea Services of the U.S. and Mexico, while serving the people of Puerto Vallarta. We host visiting Navy and Coast Guard ships; assist as needed the local Mexican Navy Base; arrange transport by visiting Navy/Coast Guard ships of donated medical goods from the U.S.; arrange the painting/repair of local schools, orphanages and other public/non-profit facilities by visiting sailors; assist targeted local schools in any number of ways; and of course, run the local Toys for Tots program including the construction of playgrounds. Membership is open to all – no prior military service is required. We meet the 1st Tuesday of every month at the Marriott Hotel in the Marina. Simply stop by one of our meetings to find out who we are and what we do, or call Bill Clark at (322) 222-3616 for more information.
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If you would like to donate directly to the non-profits in Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit, here are some suggestions you may want to consider to help our local communities in this time of greatest need.