AKRON - The kids were so excited, they ran towards the trucks that blew their horns before stopping at a designated corner.
Many of the kids may have suspected what would happen next. Such is the reputation of "Elves and More."
That extraordinary organization passed out 1,300 bikes for free to children on Sunday. For some of those children, it may either be the best, or the only, Christmas present they will get this year.
We raise money, we order bikes and we secure a warehouse," said "Elves and More" President Tim House, "but without the volunteers, we couldn't make it happen."
Last weekend, hundreds of volunteers spent a day assembling the bikes. The location of the distribution is done in coordination with the Akron Police Department. It's officers know where there are a lot of children who may need a bike.
"A lot of times, we see these children in different circumstances," said Captain Daniel Zampelli, "and we may be arresting a family member or bringing sad news. So, to see smiles on these children's faces, brings warmth to our hearts as well."
When Amir Gracy received his bike on Sunday, the youngster said simply that "it's just so amazing that you get a chance to get a bike you can't afford."
Volunteer Lenny Rauscher summed it up succinctly when he said: "One kid, one smile, that's all I need."
There were 1,300 children smiling on Sunday and there will be more smiling next year.
In fact, since 2006, "Elves and More" has donated over 6,000 bicycles and tricycles to children in the Akron area.
It is the spirit of Christmas and it is on display every year in Akron.