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Speedway collects money, toys for families at Christmas
Clay Campbell, president of Martinsville Speedway, waves the green flag to begin the Girls on the Run 5k Sunday at the speedway. The speedway also held its 17th annual toy drive Sunday, and 750 toys and more than $3,000 were donated to help families in need. (Bulletin photo by Mike Wray)
Blustery cold weather did not have a chilling effect on the generosity of those attending the 17th Annual Martinsville Speedway Toy Drive Sunday afternoon.
More than 750 toys were donated along with more than $3,000 to help more than 100 families in the Martinsville and Henry County area have a better Christmas.
“Year after year the people of our community come together to help others in need during our toy drive,” said Martinsville Speedway President Clay Campbell. “It’s always humbling to see our friends and neighbors in Martinsville and Henry County help others. It’s something we are very proud to be a part of.”
Even though the toy drive was delayed a day by cold rain on Saturday, a steady stream of people poured into the speedway Sunday afternoon. Some dropped in to deliver toys or to make a cash donation, while others drove their personal vehicles around the track after making a $10 donation and others made a $50 donation to ride in a Sprint Cup car driven by Campbell.
Volunteers from the Grace Network, a network of more than a 100 churches in the area, manned the Infield Media Center, sorting the toys for distribution later in the week. Grace Network volunteers also will use all funds raised to shop for more toys this week.
“Our volunteers always look forward to the toy drive each year. It’s a wonderful day, full of fun for everyone. And this year was no exception,” said Grace Network Executive Director Donna Proctor. “Despite the chilly weather, all of our hearts were warmed by the generosity of individuals and groups within this community. Grace Network’s board, staff, and volunteers are honored to be a part of the very special event.”
Toys and monetary donations can be made until Wednesday by dropping them off at Martinsville Speedway. Checks should be made out to Grace Network.
The day began at the speedway with the Girls on the Run 5K. More than 400 runners were registered for the race and 298 finished.