Spectators at this year’s 24th annual Marion County Toy Run saw 148 motorcycles and 16 classic cars Saturday rumbling down the main streets of Hillsboro and Marion with Christmas toys accompanying the riders.
Tom Koslowsky, secretary-treasurer with Sons of the American Legion, and treasurer of the Toy Run consortium, said donations could be less than in previous years.
“It was a nasty start to the day—cloudy, foggy, cold—and so we didn’t have as many motorcycles as in some years,” he said.
“As for the donations, I think the total will be down, but that happens, and weather does play a big part.”
Regardless of weather, nothing seemed to dampen the spirit of riders, with many carrying more than one toy on their bikes, said Jessie Wiebe, president, Hillsboro State Bank, and destination for Toy Run participants.
Kim Abrahams was also present at the event, which he said he’s been doing for 24 years.
Looking under the Christmas tree at Hillsboro State Bank, Abrahams said he would estimate there were more than 200 toys.
After the motorcyclists and classic cars delivered toys to the bank, many headed to the American Legion to take part in the auction and chili dinner, Tom Koslowsky said.
“The auction doesn’t play as big a part as it used to, but at one time, the auction was a major portion (of proceeds),” he said. “Now we get a bigger percentage of donations from businesses and individuals.”
While most of the contributions come from Marion County, the Toy Run does collect money from outlying counties.
“I got some calls today, with people saying the ‘run’ just slipped past them, but they would be sending donations,” he added.
Koslowsky said the total amount of money collected for the Toy Run over 23 years was near $190,000.
“I would think with this year, the amount will be more than $200,000,” he said. The distribution of cash and toys is anticipated to be the first Saturday in December, he added.
The first Toy Run has raised a little under $500 with 18 motorcycles participating, said Tom Koslowsky.